*Samantha Blatt, Ph.D.
Office: Graveley 157
I received my PhD in biological anthropology in 2013 from Ohio State University. I integrate cultural and archaeological context with biological evidence to better understand adaptive strategies of human-environment interaction from a holistic perspective. My work has centered on reconstructing the lives of prehistoric Native Americans in the Midwest and Great Basin from skeletal, dental, and mortuary remains. I have also excavated in the Near East and Europe and worked with many collections throughout North America. Specifically, I am interested in incremental dental enamel microstructures as they relate to growth, development, and stress in prehistoric children and the ultimate influences (i.e. political, economic) on biological markers.
My work seeks to explain facets of childhood experiences in prehistory, which has traditionally been marginalized. My interest in the bioarcheology of childhood extends to the relationship between childhood stress and adult lifecourse and mortality. I have worked with the Idaho State Historic Preservation Office in pursuant with NAGPRA and various coroner’s offices and law enforcement agencies. Community outreach, interdisciplinary engagement, and inclusion of a descendant population voice and worldview is foundational to my research design, teaching, and personal advocacy. I believe in an interactive and innovative learning approaches to accommodate diverse learning styles.
Student research is paramount, and I energetically invite students to work with me to hone their skills, learn new ones, and pursue their own research interests to grow as scholars and anthropology activists. Outside of campus life I find time to enjoy archery, knitting nerd-inspired accessories, fishing, carving bone ornaments, perfecting my BBQ/smoking skills, collecting curious rocks, meandering through flea markets, and going on adventures with my bulldogs.