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Human Body Decomposition


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The only text to chronologically provide 200 years of research into the human decomposition process.

Table of Contents

Chapter 1: Supravital Reactions in the Estimation of the Time Since Death (TSD) Chapter 2: Algor Mortis and Temperature-Based Methods of Estimating the Time Since Death Chapter 3: Biochemical Methods of Estimating the Time since Death Chapter 4: Research in the Later Stages of Decomposition Chapter 5: Recent Research and Current Trends

About the Author

Jarvis Hayman is a retired surgeon who studied archaeology, completing a Master's degree at the Australian National University in Canberra with a thesis on the archaeology of the Scottish Highland Clearances. He then combined his medical and archaeological knowledge to complete a PhD on the estimation of the time since death in decomposed human bodies in Australian conditions. His research areas of interest are: historical archaeology and forensic archaeology/anthropology. He is a Visiting Fellow at the Australian National University and the co-author of Human Body Decomposition. Marc Oxenham is a Professor in Bioarchaeology at the Australian National University, Canberra, Australia. His expertise in human skeletal biology has been recognized nationally through invitations to consult on a range of forensic cases for the Australian Federal Police, Australian Government Solicitor, The Australian Defense Forces (in particular Unrecovered War Casualties-Army) as well as the New South Wales Police Force. His main research has concentrated on exploring aspects of human palaeopathology and behavior by way of analyses of human skeletal and dental material. He has held teaching and research positions at Colorado College, USA, and the ANU. He was president of the Australasian Society of Human Biology (2012-14), an Australian Future Fellow (2013-17), elected a Fellow of the Society of Antiquaries of London in 2011 and elected a Fellow of the Australian Academy of the Humanities in 2016.


"...represents a detailed review of the extensive body of research relating to TSD estimation of human decomposition. In just over 150 pages, the authors have managed to cover the copious methods proposed from the early hours of post-mortem through to the skeletal stage and beyond...a useful reference to a range of audiences including students, academics, pathologists, police and anyone involved in death investigations." --Australian Journal of Forensic Sciences

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