Research Resources

Rosalinda Linares

AAA Association for Queer Anthropology,

Founded in the late 1970s as the Anthropology Research Group on Homosexuality (ARGOH), the Association for Queer Anthropology was a direct response to threats of discrimination in the field and serves both as a source of a research agenda for queer anthropology and as a political response to members’ stated needs to organize. It was the first organized identity-based professional group in anthropology or archaeology worldwide. The AQA sponsor multiple panels and events at the annual meeting of the America Anthropological Association, where it also holds business meetings. The AQA also annually presents the a Distinguished Achievement Award, the Ruth Benedict Prize, the Kenneth W. Payne Student Prize, and three travel grants. Of note on their site is a resources tab with access to syllabi for classes on LGBTQ anthropology as well as links to relevant archives, conferences, programs, institutes, departments, publications, and scholarly and professional organization.

  • APA citation:
    AAA Association for Queer Anthropology (AQA). Retrieved from
  • MLA citation:
    AAA Association for Queer Anthropology (AQA), Accessed [enter date].
  • Chicago citation:
    AAA Association for Queer Anthropology (AQA). Accessed [enter date].

Queer archaeologies, Special issue of World Archaeology,

cover of World Archaeology special issue featuring a photo of a relief sketch of two men in profileIn this special issue of World Archaeology, a peer-reviewed journal, issue editor Thomas A. Dowson introduces queer archaeology as a challenge to the normative ideas and practices entrenched in current archaeology. This issue represents the first time an entire peer-reviewed journal in the field of archaeology was devoted to defining and discussing queer archaeologies and is frequently cited as representative of the origins of queer studies in archaeology. Dowson is a pioneer in the subfield of queer archeologies. The articles include an anonymous autobiographical statement on the influence of sex and sexuality on a practicing archaeologist, homophobia and women in archaeology, queer theory and its relation to the study of the material past, an exploration of autoarchaeology and neo-shaminism, and biotechnology as a site of queer archaeology. Notably, several articles focus on the interpretation, or in some cases reinterpretation, of the material record as inclusive of same-sex relationships and the non-normative. The issue as a whole gives the reader a rounded perspective of the shape of queer archaeology in the field at the end of the 20th century.

  • APA citation: Dowson, T. A. (Ed.). (2000). Queer archaeologies [Special issue]. World Archaeology, 32(2).
  • MLA citation: Dowson, Thomas A. World Archaeology, vol. 32, no. 2, 2000. JSTOR,
  • APA citation: Dowson, Thomas A. World Archaeology 32, no. 2 (2000):

Gender and archaeology: contesting the past by Roberta Gilchrist

In this book, Roberta Gilchrist provides a thorough overview of the definitions, interests, and methods of gender archaeology and evaluates the ever-expanding role of gender studies in archaeology. Gilchrist draws from the previous decade of research and as such this work represents the midpoint in the twenty year span of interest in gender and queer archaeology in the 21st century. Gilchrist begins in the first chapter by situating growth in gender archaeology within the progression of feminism and continues in the next chapter to interrogate how archaeological knowledge is gendered. The following chapters consider the relationship between production and social processes of gender in the archaeology of labor and technology, and representations of gender identity, sexuality and the body in art, space and grave goods. The book concludes with a case study of a medieval English castle, putting to practice concepts discussed in the previous chapters.

  • APA citation: Gilchrist, R. (2012). Gender and archaeology: contesting the past. New York, NY: Routledge.
  • MLA citation: Gilchrist, Roberta. Gender and archaeology: contesting the past. Routledge, 2012.
  • Chicago citation: Gilchrist, Roberta. Gender and archaeology: contesting the past.  New York: Routledge, 2012.

Sex pottery of Peru: Moche ceramics shed light on ancient sexuality by Joanna Gillan, 

In this post on the Ancient Origins website, Gillan gives an example of artifact interpretations of Moche ceramic pottery through a gender, sex, and sexuality lens. This article illustrates how theories around sex and sexuality in archaeology have changed over time and gives material examples of how the field has evolved in terms of interpretation. After a brief introduction to the Moche civilization of northern Peru, Gillan provides links to examples of Moche tombs and images of the pottery. Gillan discusses the Moche art style and references various interpretations for sexual depictions on the pottery, which include same-sex acts. Further reading can be found in the references links at the bottom of the post.

How to Do the History of Male Homosexuality by David M. Halperin

David Halperin is a well-regarded gender and queer theorist and in this book Halperin lays the groundwork for incorporating gender and queer theory into the study of history, including queer archaeology. This work is frequently cited in many fields that look toward the past through the lens of gender. In this last chapter of this book, Halperin argues against a singular discursive history of male homosexuality and instead distinguishes the four categories of effeminacy, “active” sodomy, friendship or male love, and “passivity” or inversion as antecedents to a fifth category of homosexuality. Halperin uses constructivist discourses from historical sources to outline the four categories and discusses how these categories explain modern strategies of social differentiation with regards to gender norms. His theoretical and conceptual work in this area has been influential to archaeological research in gender, sex, and sexuality in the 21st century.
  • APA citation: Halperin, D. M. (2002). How to do the history of male homosexuality. In How to do the history of homosexuality (pp. 104-137). Chicago, IL: University of Chicago Press.
  • MLA citation: Halperin, David. How to do the history of male homosexuality. University of Chicago Press, 2002. 
  • Chicago citation: Halperin, David. How to do the history of male homosexuality. Chicago: University of Chicago Press, 2002. 

Gender and power in Prehispanic Mesoamerica by Rosemary A. Joyce

Rosemary Joyce – who has made significant contributions to the materiality and archaeology of gender, sex, and sexuality – invokes Judith Butler’s theoretical work on gender performance to situate this volume on gender in Mesoamerica. In the following chapters, Joyce analyzes material evidence and gender depictions and roles dating from the formative Mesoamerica, Classic and Postclassic Maya, and then the Aztec periods. An important work in gender and archaeology, Joyce strives to reexamine the material record to reveal the contrasts between European and Mesoamerican gender ideologies in order to find alternate ways of understanding our material past.

  • APA citation: Joyce, R. A. (2000). Gender and power in Prehispanic Mesoamerica. Austin, TX: University of Texas Press.
  • MLA citation: Joyce, Rosemary. Gender and power in Prehispanic Mesoamerica. University of Texas Press, 2000.
  • Chicago citation: Joyce, Rosemary. Gender and power in Prehispanic Mesoamerica. Austin: University of Texas Press, 2000.

Ancient bodies, ancient lives: Sex, gender, and archaeology by Rosemary A. Joyce

In this book, Rosemary Joyce surveys archaeological studies of gender, sex, and sexuality in ancient societies spanning 30,000 years from the Paleolithic period up through discussions of late nineteenth century brothels in California. Joyce argues for inclusion of gender in the study of archaeology, providing a history of the gender studies in archaeology, putting gender into practice, and makes a case for archaeologists to more broadly look at difference in the material record in new ways. The book includes analysis and reinterpretation of Mesoamerican and European sites to challenge categorical approaches to gender, gender and hierarchical structures, and to rethink sex in the past.
  • APA citation: Joyce, R. A. (2008). Ancient bodies, ancient lives: Sex, gender, and archaeology. New York, NY: Thames and Hudson.
  • MLA citation: Joyce, Rosemary. Ancient bodies, ancient lives: Sex, gender, and archaeology. Thames and Hudson, 2008.
  • Chicago citation: Joyce, Rosemary. Ancient bodies, ancient lives: Sex, gender, and archaeology. New York: Thames and Hudson, 2008.

Gender in Pre-Hispanic America : a symposium at Dumbarton Oaks by Cecelia F. Klein and Jeffrey Quilter

This volume is a collection of essays presented at an interdisciplinary symposium on Pre-Columbian gender issues in 1996 at Dumbarton Oaks. In the introduction, Klein provides a short, informative history of burgeoning interdisciplinary interest in gender in Pre-Hispanic America. Many well-known scholars who incorporate gender in their work were present at this symposium. The following ten essays include work done by art historians, anthropologists and archaeologists, historians and ethnographers that address challenging methodological problems, Pre-Hispanic concepts and ways of knowing about gender, and gender politics. The essayists contend with the limitations of understanding gender both with and without written documentation, whether such documentation be colonial or preconquest texts or images and with how gender was defined and constructed by Pre-Hispanic peoples and how it structured their lives and interests.
  • APA citation: Klein, C. F. & Quilter, J. (Eds.). (2001). Gender in Pre-Hispanic America : a symposium at Dumbarton Oaks, 12 and 13 October 1996. Washington, D.C.: Dumbarton Oaks Research Library and Collection.
  • MLA citation: Klein, Cecelia F., and Jefferson Quilter, editors. Gender in Pre-Hispanic America : a symposium at Dumbarton Oaks. Dumbarton Oaks Research Library and Collection, 2001.
  • Chicago citation: Gender in Pre-Hispanic America : a symposium at Dumbarton Oaks, edited by Cecelia F. Klein and Jefferson Quilter. Washington D.C.: Dumbarton Oaks Research Library and Collection, 2001.

The Amazons: Lives and legends of warrior women across the ancient world by Adrienne Mayor

In this book Adrienne Mayor, Research Scholar in Classica and History & Philosophy of Science at Stanford University, details the archaeological record behind myths of warrior women across the world. Mayor discusses Greek mythology of the Amazons and also focuses in on real nomadic horsewomen archers of the steppes in ancient Greece and other discoveries from the material record of women engaging in battle dating back to 5,000 BC. The book is divided into four sections with the first introducing and unpacking the concept of ‘Amazons’, the second discussing historical women warriors and classical traditions, the third focusing in on Greek and Roman myth and history, and the fourth looking at other areas of the world. Of note is a short chapter on sex and love that analyzes same-sex relationships between Amazon women.
  • APA citation: Mayor, A. (2014). The Amazons: Lives and legends of warrior women across the ancient world. Princeton, NJ: Princeton University Press.
  • MLA citation: Mayor, Adrienne.The Amazons: Lives and legends of warrior women across the ancient world. Princeton University Press, 2014.
  • Chicago Citation: Mayor, Adrienne.The Amazons: Lives and legends of warrior women across the ancient world. Princeton: Princeton University Press, 2014.

“Towards an inclusive queer archaeology” in The SAA archaeological record by Dawn M. Rutecki and Chelsea Blackmore

A special issue of the magazine of the Society for American Archaeology that delves into current issues relating to queer archaeology and the LGBTQI community. This magazine is aimed towards working archaeologists and scholars and this issue brings gender and queer archaeology to the forefront of professional consideration in the field. Contributors introduce and define key terms such as heteronormativity and privilege within the scope of the archaeology of gender, sex, and sexuality, advocate for avoiding heteronormative interpretations of the archaeological record in practice, give lived experience accounts of the LGBTQI community working in archaeology today, teaching gender in undergraduate archaeological courses, consider how “allyship” is mobilized for working archaeologists, and reports on the first Queer Archaeology Interest Group forum held at the 80th Annual Meeting of the SAA in San Francisco in 2015.

SAA Queer Archaeology Interest Group,

The first meeting of the Queer Archaeology Interest Group occurred at the 80th Annual Meeting of the Society for American Archaeology in 2015. The group focuses on queer experience in the field, and its interests lie in supporting professional archaeologist who identify as LGBTQI. Their goals are to advocate for establishing a network of scholars interested in sexuality studies and other forms of queer research, developing a support and mentorship program for LGBTQI archaeologists as a means to connect senior, junior, and student archaeologists, and facilitating the involvement of LGBTQI archaeologists in all aspects of the SAA.

“More sex: Studying sexuality and gendered roles in archaeology” from the Podcast Indiana Jones: Myth, Reality and 21st Century Archaeology, hosted by Dr. Joseph Schuldenrein, 

A podcast interview with Dr. Rosemary A. Joyce, Professor of Anthropology at University of California Berkeley. Joyce is a preeminent scholar in sex and sexuality in archaeology and this podcast shows breadth and depth of knowledge in the field. Joyce discusses the evolution of research in the archaeology of gender and sex as a sub-discipline beginning in the 1980’s when archaeologists first had an interest in understanding the experiences of people based on the archaeological record and interrogating gender roles, labor, and societal structures of the past. In the latter half of the interview, Joyce describes the emergence of feminist and queer archaeology in the 1990s as a rejection of archaeological practices that naturalized gender and sex as heteronormative and binaristic. Joyce utilizes many detailed examples in discussions ranging from the Paleolithic, Assyrian, Egyptian, Greek, Roman, Medieval, and Mesoamerican time periods up to modern ethnographies to illustrate the varying methods and interpretations used in the study of gender, sex, and sexuality in the archaeological record.

“Queer Achaeology” from the podcast Go Dig a Hole, hosted by Christopher Sims,

A podcast interview with Dr. Chelsea Blackmore, Assistant Professor of Anthropology at University of California, Santa Cruz, and Megan Springate, PhD candidate in Anthropology at University of Maryland and works in the Cultural Resources office of the National Parks Service. This podcast provides a broader view of queer archaeology, including not only theory and site-based scholarship, but also how “queering the field” is present in other types of professional work. Blackmore discusses definitions of queer archaeology in relation to queer theory and feminist theory, underscoring contributions by eminent figures in the field. Springate introduces the LGBTQ Heritage project within the National Park Service, which strives to preserve LGBTQ historical sites on the National Register and the National Historic Landmarks program. Both guests describe what “queering” archaeology and building “inclusive” archaeology means to them in both academic and professional spaces. They also give advice to early career archaeologists and undergraduates on ways in which to acquire knowledge and skills in queer theory and archaeology.

“Sexuality Studies in Archaeology” by Barbara L. Voss

In this article Barbara L. Voss offers a comprehensive review of the state of sexuality studies in the mid-2000’s. Voss is a another well-known scholar who focuses on sexuality studies in archaeology. Voss focuses on five areas: reproduction management, sexual representations, sexual identities, prostitution, and the sexual politics of institutions. Of note is a section at the end of the article on queer archaeologies, where Voss draws a distinction between sexuality research in archaeology and applying queer theory to archaeology as Voss affirms the increasing influence and possibilities of queer theory in archaeological methods regarding sexuality and its wider applications to social identity.

“What knowers know well: Why feminism matters to archaeology” by Alison Wylie

Dr. Alison Wylie, Professor of Philosophy and Anthropology at the University of Washington and Professor of Philosophy at Durham University, UK in 2016 gave the Katz Distinguished Lecture in the Humanities as the opening keynote for the conference Feminism and Classics 7: Visions. Wylie’s work advocates for a further infusion of feminist theory into archaeology as a whole. Wylie’s talk focuses on interrogating the rejection of feminist standpoint theory and the influence of feminist politics in some circles of gender archaeology research and argues that social constructivist analyses within archaeological methodologies brings richness to empirical study in a way that calls into question the notion of “value free” research. Wylie introduces social constructionism and strategies and grades of constructionist analysis, talks about situated knowledge and its value to empirical research, and ends with feminist contributions and challenges to gender archaeology rooted in standpoint theory.