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International Workshop "Interdisciplinary Approaches to the Study of Human and Mollusc Interactions: from Prehistory to Present"
The International Workshop «Interdisciplinary Approaches to the Study of Human and Mollusc Interactions: from Prehistory to Present» is organized by the French National Museum of Natural History [Muséum National d’Histoire Naturelle] in partnership with the National Fisheries College of Papua New Guinea.
Ariadna Burgos (Muséum National d’Histoire Naturelle)
Philippe Bouchet (Muséum National d’Histoire Naturelle)
Jeff Kinch (National Fisheries College, Papua New Guinea)
Shell deposits scattered along the coasts of the world testify to the selective use of molluscs by humans for at least 150,000 years. Molluscs are still a source of nutrient-rich food, raw material for tool-making and home building, and an object of worship carrying beliefs and symbolic values for many coastal and island societies. Some species are now cultivated on a large scale for food, or are collected for the tourist industry or for private malacological collections. Molluscs are also important indicators for environmental health, but can also be deadly when they accumulate various pathogens and pollutants.
Interactions between humans and molluscs offer multiple areas of study and disciplinary approaches. Today, theoretical and methodological approaches for the study of human-mollusc interactions include archaeology, anthropology, fisheries, ecology and biology. However, the nature of the relationship between humans and molluscs is increasingly becoming more challenging due to globalization, climate change, development of coasts and calls for further interdisciplinary coordination.
Objectives and expectations
The «Interdisciplinary Approaches to the Study of Human and Mollusc Interactions: from Prehistory to Present» workshop has two objectives:
- to provide a comparative analysis of the diversity of interactions between humans and molluscs, and their evolution in time and space; and
- to provide a space to meet, exchange ideas and construct knowledge between researchers from various fields.
The workshop will therefore present different research methods and case studies dealing with:
- the diversity, associations and life history of bivalves and gastropods;
- the cultural and symbolic value of molluscs and shells;
- the formation, nature and interpretation of contemporary and ancient shellfish deposits;
- the uses, local knowledge, and strategies and dynamics of collection, production and management of shellfish; and
- the health, ecological, socio-economic and political issues affecting shellfish resources and the societies that depend on them.
More informations : http://human-mollusc-interactions.com/