Lee To Welcome Adkins To Present Lecture In Physical Anthropology

Thursday, November 7, 2019
Ashley Adkins
Ashley Adkins

Ashley Atkins from University of Hawai'i at Manoa will present “Habitual activities of prehistoric hunter-gatherer-fishers and farmers: A case study from Japan” on Thursday at 6 p.m.  The lecture will take place at Lee University’s Humanities Center, Room 100.

Ms. Atkins, a Lee alumna, is a PhD candidate in the Department of Anthropology at the University of Hawai'i, pursuing a specialty in physical anthropology. Her talk is about the transition from fishing, hunting, and gathering to full-time agriculture and how it occurred at different times in different places throughout the world. 

According to Ms. Atkins, different habitual activities performed by hunter-gatherer-fishers and farmers can be identified in the postcranial skeleton.

“Using the human body as a storybook, we can learn the history of prehistoric hunter-gatherer-fishers and early farmers of Japan, just from marks left on their skeletal remains,” says Ms. Atkins.

Ms. Atkins received a Master of Science from Liverpool John Moores University in 2016 in forensic anthropology, where she studied the degeneration of the sternal end of the clavicle to estimate the age of elderly individuals using the prevalence of osteoarthritis of the sternoclavicular joint. 

While studying in Europe, Ms. Atkins spent time in Rome shadowing forensic experts, excavating and exhuming skeletonized individuals from a medieval cemetery at the Poulton-Cheshire Farm, and working in the St. Bride’s skeletal collection at Museum of London.

In Hawai'i, Ms. Atkins has led a group of seven anatomists and archaeologists learning forensic anthropology techniques at the John A. Burns School of Medicine forensics lab. She also scored and measured skeletal remains of 104 individuals from four Yayoi sites with the Kyushu University Museum, and assessed skeletal remains for preservation for the National Museum of Nature and Science in Tsukuba, Kyoto University, Japan.

“Ashley is one of those rare students whose love of learning, intelligence, and passion has united for success in, perhaps, the most rigorous and challenging area of our discipline,” said Dr. Richard Jones, professor of anthropology at Lee. “The anthropology faculty at Lee are extremely proud of her accomplishments in biological anthropology.”


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