Institute of Archaeology


Shanna Kang

 Post-Mortem Embodiment in an Interdisciplinary Study of the Human Corpse

Portrait of Shanna Kang with a dog looking at the camera

Email: tcrnsk0@ucl.ac.uk
Section: Archaeological Science



Post-Mortem Embodiment in an Interdisciplinary Study of the Human Corpse

 My research will discuss how social impacts of racism interact with the dead body. The disparate treatment of human remains by research and forensic practitioners culminates along racialized lines that should no longer be ignored by forensic anthropologists and bioarchaeologists. This brings up concepts of how human remains are treated, and whether race and racism impact this treatment. If so, can oppression follow the human body into the grave? This project will discuss the inequality experienced by dead people in America through medicolegal investigations, anatomization, disinterment, and the ‘losing’ of cemeteries. This project will not only facilitate discourse on ethical practice of bioarchaeology and forensic anthropology, but will also use history, theories of race, theories of power, and bioethics to argue that the dead body can be, and is often, oppressed. This will allow the address of issues regarding how academics, professionals, institutions, and systems treat the dead bodies of people of color and continue their oppressive experience through the afterlife. 


  • BA, Anthropology, Grinnell College, 2021
  • MSc, Bioarchaeology and Forensic Anthropology, UCL, 2022
Conference papers

Over my Dead, Oppressed Body, BABAO podium presentation, 2023