Theses and Dissertations

Issuing Body

Mississippi State University


Zuckerman, Molly K.

Committee Member

Hardin, James W.

Committee Member

Galaty, Michael L.

Committee Member

McClellen, Kate

Date of Degree


Original embargo terms

Visible to MSU only for 3 years

Document Type

Graduate Thesis - Open Access


Applied Anthropology

Degree Name

Master of Arts


College of Arts and Sciences


Department of Anthropology and Middle Eastern Cultures


Bab edh-Dhra is the most extensively excavated cemetery from Early Bronze Age, Jordan. Despite thorough study, the social structure and existence of social inequality remain unclear. This was addressed using osteological evidence of physiological stress to compare between family tombs. In societies exhibiting social inequality, individuals of lower status experience higher levels of stress. Evidence of physiological stress (femoral length, LEH, metabolic disorders, periosteal reactions, cribra orbitalia, and porotic hyperostosis) was recorded using standard methods for 250 adults. The artifact counts in this study have been previously published. Differences in the frequency of stress indicators were compared using chi-square tests. The results show no difference in the frequency of stress indicators between tombs and no correlation between artifacts and frequency of stress indicators. This indicates that families at Bab edh-Dhra experienced similar stress levels and low inequality. This may be due to cultural practices, subsistence methods or lack of data.



social inequality||social stratification||Bab edh-Dhra||Jordan||Early Bronze Age||EBA||skeletal stress||paleopathology||LEH||cribra orbitalia||porotic hyperostosis||periosteal reaction||adult stature||growth interruption