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The Seetah lab is one of the research facilities housed in the Stanford Archaeology Center. The lab primarily focuses on zooarchaeology and human-animal interactions, deeper-time perspectives on disease, and the historical archaeology, heritage, and ecology of the Indian Ocean. Under these broad subject areas, lab members have innovatively developed exciting research projects that investigate a number of pressing issues. Specifically, Dr. Seetah’s long-term work concentrates on the consumption of meat and associated technology. More recently, his research has centered on a more holistic approach to studying the relationships between climate and vector borne disease. Case studies focus on historic and contemporary Rift Valley Fever virus in Kenya, and historic incidence of malaria in Mauritius and Venice. Ultimately, our lab seeks to address a principal objective: to make archaeo-historic materials and data relevant to the modern world.
In addition to research activities, the lab serves as a teaching classroom, principally for osteoarchaeological courses on human and animal bone, as well as archaeological research methods. In addition, theoretical courses on the social context of human bone in society, and the complexities of human-animal interactions, are also taught in the lab. Lab members undertake an annual field school, training Stanford undergraduates in excavation skills.