Thursday, September 27, 2007

Forensic Anthro Books

Last semester I received a grant to design (and teach) a 'Forensic Anthropology' class. Students have been asking for it for years, so I decided to bite the bullet (so to speak). I want to incorporate popular presentations of the discipline in the class, so I've been reading novels that include a forensic anthropologist. I've come to a surprising conclusion: they just aren't very good.

Either they do a great job of describing the forensic issues, but have the literary depth of a newspaper article (Jefferson Bass), or they are fun to read but really gloss over the discipline (Thomas Holland). The exception seems to be Kathy Reichs.

For my ASOR/Jerusalem friends, check out her newest book called "Cross Bones." Kinda creeped me out -- she acknowledges (and has characters that clearly represent): Azriel Gorski, Jim Tabor, Shimon Gibson, etc. I'm still working thru it, but you just know Joe Zias is going to show up ;-)

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