Paola Ponce
Associate Lecturer in Osteoarchaeology

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Profile

Biography

Paola took her BSc in Biological Anthropology at Universidad Nacional de La Plata (Buenos Aires, Argentina) in 2002 to then move to the UK to pursue her post-graduate studies. She received her MSc Human Osteology and Palaeopathology at Bradford University in 2004 and her PhD in Palaeopathology at Durham University in 2010 with a Durham Doctoral Fellowship Award.

She worked for Archaeology South-East (University College London) between 2012-2017 carrying out excavation and post-excavation assessment and analysis of human and cremated remains spanning temporarily from Neolithic to post-medieval times.

In 2017 she was appointed as an Associate Lecturer in Bioarchaeology in the Department of Archaeology at the University of York where she teaches Human Bones for undergraduates.

Research

Overview

My current research interests include the study of health and disease in past populations, particularly British, European and Amerindians from South America, history of medicine and funerary archaeology of human remains. Some current examples include:


• Mercury content in skeletons with syphilis from London
• Isolated and deviant Saxon burials in southern England
• Palaeopathology of a Saxon population from Soham, Cambridgeshire
• History of medicine: cranial dissections in post-medieval England
• Hip prosthesis in contemporary skeletal collections from Argentina
• Paediatric palaeopathology: Legg-Calvé-Perthes disease in post-medieval London

Past examples of research include:

• Palaeopathology of post-medieval populations
• Palaeopathology of Victorian England populations
• History of medicine in Victorian England: amputations
• Activity-related and occupational diseases in native Americans from South America
• Orthopaedic pathology of northern Chile
• Functional craniology in native Americans from South America

I can supervise Masters and PhD students willing to conduct research on any aspect of the above-mentioned topics and other related themes of osteoarchaeology and palaeopathology of past populations

Grants

• 2017 Society for Post-Medieval Archaeology
• 2016 Prehistoric Society's new Collections Study Award
• 2016 ArtFund: The Jonathan Ruffer Curational Grants Programme
• 2015 British Association for Biological Anthropology and Osteoarchaeology (BABAO). Commercial Grant Scheme
• 2015 The City of London Archaeological Trust (CoLAT)
• 2009-2006 Durham Doctoral Fellowship Award. PhD research grant

Teaching

Undergraduate

Second year

Practical Skills: Human Bones

Team Project: Human Bones

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Contact details

Dr Paola Ponce
Associate Lecturer in Osteoarchaeology
Department of Archaeology, PalaeoHub
University of York
Wentworth Way
Heslington
York
YO10 5DD

Tel: 01904 323900

External activities

Memberships

Member of the British Association for Biological Anthropology and Osteoarchaeology (BABAO)

Member of the Paleopathology Association (PPA)

Invited talks and conferences

Outreach activities and public talks

2017: Family Archaeology Day. Displaying human remains at Brighton Museum.

2017: The application of scientific techniques in commercial archaeology. Talk given to the Brighton & Hove Archaeological Society.

2016: The value of human remains in archaeology. Talk given at Brighton Museum.

2015: The autopsy of the skeleton. Talk given to the Brighton & Hove Archaeological Society.

2015: Whitehawk Camp. Displaying Neolithic human remains at the Brighton Museum.

2014: The Autopsy of bones: sex and dissection. Talk given at The Novium Museum.

2013: Scientific techniques and the study of human remains. Talk given to the Surrey Archaeological Society.

2013: The autopsy of the skeleton. Talk given to the Novium Museum.

2008: The Victorian way of life: a palaeopathological perspective. Talk given to the Bradford Language Centre (West Yorkshire, UK).

 

Museum engagement 

2017-ongoing collaboration with the Museum of Brighton (East Sussex) in relation to the launch of the Archaeology Gallery at the end of 2018 and the analysis and display of 5 skeletons representing the early inhabitants of the city from the Neolithic, Bronze Age, Iron Age, Romano-British and Saxon periods.

https://brightonmuseums.org.uk/2017/05/04/a-new-archaeology-gallery-will-open-at-brighton-museum-art-gallery-in-summer-2018/.

Media coverage

Newspaper:

2017 Interview about 2 skeletons found during excavations near Ramsgate, Kent.

https://www.kentlive.news/news/kent-news/two-human-skeletons-been-found-711877

http://www.kentonline.co.uk/thanet/news/roman-era-skeletons-uncovered-134703/

 

Radio:

2017 Interview on BBC Sussex Radio about the discovery of a Quaker burial ground in the Corn Exchange of Brighton.

 

Web:

2017 Interview for the Brighton Dome about the discovery of a Quaker burial ground in the Corn Exchange.

https://brightondome.org/news_blog/interview_archaeology_south_east_on_the_discovery_of_a_historic_quaker_burial_site/

2017 Laying out an Iron Age skeleton at Brighton Museum for Museumcrush.org

http://museumcrush.org/we-take-an-ancient-skeleton-from-a-museum-store-room-and-piece-it-together/