Associate Professor -Archaeology & Bioarchaeology
PhD 2000 (University of Durham, England)
Office: Social Science Centre 3427
Tel: 519 661-2111 ext. 80105
Alexis Lucas (L) and Agnes Amos (C) "visit" archaeological sites using Google cardboard while Ry Ry Lucas looks on - Inualthuyuk School Sachs Harbour.
I am an anthropological archaeologist with a strong commitment to community archaeology. I work primarily in the north, particularly in the western Canadian Arctic with Inuvialuit research partners. I currently co-direct, with Natasha Lyons, Phase 2 of the Inuvialuit Living History Project, a digital heritage partnership between the Inuvialuit Cultural Centre, the Inuvialuit Communications Society, Parks Canada, Prince of Wales Northern Heritage Centre, Simon Fraser University and the University of Western Ontario.
I am also a zooarchaeologist, and dabble in landscape archaeology, the application of geophysical techniques in archaeology, and gender archaeology. These interests have led to fruitful collaborations with colleagues and graduate students working in Ontario, Quebec, Peru and Australia.
Another aspect of my current work deals with the ethics and practice of archaeology in Canada. It asks how past and present power structures and intersections of an individual’s gender identity, sexuality, ethnicity and age shape their experiences during training and fieldwork, and in their work places. How, in turn, do those experiences impact people’s career trajectories and approaches to collegial relationships, formal and informal teaching and learning relationships, and supervisory roles? Since 2018, I chair the Canadian Archaeological Association’s Working Group on Equity and Diversity in Canadian Archaeology, which is addressing these questions. See the Recent Research section for more information about our work.
Inuvialuit Living History Project (Phase 2)
2017-2022 SSHRC Insight Grant “Co-creating Inuvialuit Digital Archaeology and Heritage” $312,329
Co-PI: Natasha Lyons
Collaborators: Beverly Amos, Sarah Carr-Locke, Charles Arnold, Ethel-Jean Gruben, Mervin Joe, Ashley Piskor, David Stuart, Sharon Thomson
Albert Elias tries on wooden snow goggles, Smithsonian Museum Support Centre. Photo by Kate Hennessy.
The Inuvialuit Living History project, Inuvialuit Pitqusiit Inuuniarutait, brings together Inuvialuit Elders, knowledge holders, and youth with archaeologists, anthropologists, digital media specialists and museum professionals. We are exploring the most effective, culturally appropriate ways to document and disseminate multiple forms of knowledge about Inuvialuit history and heritage in the digital realm. Since 2017, we are working to expand the coverage of the website to encompass the entire temporal and geographic span of human history within the Inuvialuit Settlement Region. Through a series of community events, we are creating opportunities for intergenerational knowledge transfer, for sharing, documenting and applying traditional Inuvialuit knowledge in contemporary settings, and for using and encouraging the language (check out our Facebook page for details). We are documenting these events through photos, video and audio to create new content for the website. Each event strives to create the conditions for traditional Inuvialuit approaches to teaching and learning, which we want to mirror through the website itself. Throughout the website expansion, we aim to reflect and represent traditional Inuvialuit ways of knowing and being.
Towards Equity and Diversity in Canadian Archaeology: An Experiential Profile of Canadian Archaeologists in the #MeToo Era
2018-2020 Faculty Research Development Fund (Research Grants), Faculty of Social Science, The University of Western Ontario $9,562
Collaborators: Natasha Lyons, Kisha Supernant, and John Welch
This research is part of the work of the Canadian Archaeology Association’s Working Group on Equity and Diversity in Canadian Archaeology (EDCA), of which all the project collaborators are members.
The Working Group is guided by an Advisory Board comprised of: Gary Coupland, Josh Dent, Alicia Hawkins, Patricia Markert, Elsa Perry, Farid Rahemtulla, Meghan Walley and Alison Wylie
As a social science focused on understanding ancient humanity in all its diversity, archaeology is best served by a diverse community of practitioners fostered through an equitable approach to professional development and practice. In order to promote such an approach in Canada, increase diversity within our community, and fully understand the gains already made on both fronts, we are conducting a demographic survey of Canadian archaeologists. We are also interviewing archaeological practitioners representing a diverse and intersectional set of demographics to understand the dynamics that underlie their career trajectories; approaches to collegial and mentoring relationships; and their experiences of all aspects of archaeological training and work. Our overall goal is to advance conversations about how the Canadian archaeological community can: 1) support awareness and open and transparent communication around equity and diversity issues, 2) better align our practice with established and emerging ethics and shifting demographic realities, and 3) contribute to conversations about national level codes of conduct, principles of community, and sexual harassment policies in our discipline to create safer spaces for work, study, and research, and respect and celebrate diversity within our archaeological community.
Recently Completed Projects
Ikaahuk Archaeology Project
2012-2017 SSHRC Insight Grant “Archaeological investigation of past hunting landscapes on Banks Island, NWT” $278,200
Collaborators: Edward Eastaugh, Fred Longstaffe, Dongya Yang
Lena Wolki and Jean Harry at Head Hill archaeological site - Banks Island.
The Ikaahuk Archaeology Project (IAP) brought together Inuvialuit and archaeological approaches to understand and share the history of Banks Island, known as Ikaahuk or Ikaariaq in Inuvialuktun. Our goal was to do archaeology that matters to and includes Inuvialuit. Initially, the project focused on questions about past land use on the Island, while looking to the community for direction. Community members in Sachs Harbour then shaped the research path. They shifted the focus away from excavation because traditional Inuvialuit teachings caution against disturbing archaeological sites. The project ultimately focused on applying community knowledge and making it easier for community members to find out about Banks Island archaeological sites and artifacts investigated by the IAP and other archaeologists. See our project website and Facebook page for more information.
You can access many of my publications on my Academia page.
Hodgetts, L.M. and Laura Kelvin
Forthcoming  At the Heart of the Ikaahuk Archaeology Project. In Archaeology of the Heart and Emotion, edited by Kisha Supernant, Jane Toswell, Sonya Atalay and Natasha Lyons. Springer Press.
Hodgetts, L. and E. Eastaugh
2017 The Role of Magnetometry in Managing Arctic Archaeological Sites in the Face of Climate Change. Advances in Archaeological Practice 5(2):110-124. [Selected as one of 10 articles featured in the journal’s Editorial Highlights of 2017]
Glencross, B., G. Warrick, E. Eastaugh, A. Hawkins, L. Hodgetts, L. Lesage
2017 Minimally Invasive Research Strategies in Huron-Wendat Archaeology: Working Towards and Indigenous and Sustainable Archaeology. Advances in Archaeological Practice 5(2):147-158.
Morris, Z., C. White, L. Hodgetts and F. Longstaffe
2016 Maize Provisioning of Ontario Late Woodland Turkeys: Isotopic Evidence of Seasonal, Cultural, Spatial and Temporal Variation. Journal of Archaeological Science: Reports 10:596-606.
Hodgetts, L.M., J.-F. Millaire, E. Eastaugh and C. Chapdelaine
2016 The Untapped Potential of Magnetic Survey in the Identification of Precontact Sites in Wooded Areas. Advances in Archaeological Practice 4(1):41-54.
Haukaas, C. and L. Hodgetts
2016 The Untapped Potential of Low-Cost Photogrammetry in Community-Based Archaeology: A Case Study from Banks Island, Arctic Canada. Journal of Community Archaeology and Heritage 3(1):40-56.
Moody, J.F. and L. Hodgetts
2014 Subsistence Practices of Pioneering Thule Inuit: A Faunal Analysis of Tiktalik. Arctic Anthropology 50: 4-24.
2013 Gendered Inuinnait landscapes of Banks Island’s Northern Interior, Arctic Canada. Journal of Field Archaeology 37(4): 54-67.
2013 The Rediscovery of H.M.S. Investigator: Archaeology, Sovereignty and the Colonial Legacy in Canada’s Arctic. Journal of Social Archaeology 13(1): 80-100.
Hodgetts, L., P. Dawson and E. Eastaugh
2011 Archaeological Magnetometry in an Arctic Setting: A Case Study from Maguse Lake, Nunavut. Journal of Archaeological Science 38:1754-1762.
2010 Subsistence Diversity in the Younger Stone Age Landscape of Varangerfjord, Northern Norway. Antiquity 84(323):41-54.
Hodgetts, L.M., M.A.P. Renouf, M.S. Murray, D. McCuaig-Balkwill and L. Howse
2003 Changing Subsistence Practices at the Dorset Palaeoeskimo site of Phillip’s Garden, Newfoundland. Arctic Anthropology 40(1):106-120.
2018 Edward G. Pleva Award for Teaching Excellence, The University of Western Ontario
2017 Dean’s Award for Excellence in Teaching, Faculty of Social Science, The University of Western Ontario
I teach the following courses on a rotating basis:
ANTHRO 1020 Many Ways of Being Human
Excavating a pre-Dorset tent near Churchill, Manitoba.
This course provides an introduction to the 4 fields of anthropology: Biological Anthropology, Archaeology, Sociocultural Anthropology and Linguistic Anthropology. I teach the archaeology portion, which introduces some of the ethical challenges archaeologists face; looks at the kinds of questions we can address by analyzing artifacts and environmental remains, examines the power of spatial analysis at different scales; and explores how we study social difference. Students get hands-on experience with artifacts and animal bones in the labs.
ANTHRO 2229 Arctic Archaeology
Inuvialuit Elder Jean Harry examines worked caribou antler at Head Hill archaeological site.
This is both an exciting and challenging time to do archaeological research in Canada’s Arctic. New collaborative endeavours between northern Indigenous peoples and archaeologists are changing the way we understand and conduct archaeology in the north. At the same time, climate change, which is dramatically impacting the Arctic, is rapidly destroying the arctic archaeological record and driving new approaches to documenting threatened sites and mitigating these impacts. As a class, we will reflect on how these parallel developments are reshaping archaeological practice in the north and explore some of the major research questions in Arctic archaeology. Ultimately, I hope the course will give you a sense of Canada’s rich arctic past, and insight into how and why archaeological approaches to understanding that past have changed in recent years.
ANTHRO 2261 Adventures in Pop Culture Archaeology
Famous archaeological sites and objects have long captured the public imagination, so it’s no surprise that archaeology abounds in popular culture. It is often represented, both fictionally and factually, in television and movies, on the internet, and in comics, video games and news media. This course examines how both non-archaeologists and archaeologists present archaeology to the public and considers what these representations imply about the relationship between archaeology and modern society. From Indiana Jones to alien pyramid builders, join us for the ride!
ANTHRO 3310 Zooarchaeology
This course will introduce you to the wide range of information that can be gleaned about past human groups from the animal remains they left behind after butchery, meals, toolmaking and other activities. You will also learn to identify and analyze faunal remains, including the broken fragments often recovered from archaeological sites. Each week, we will cover topics in zooarchaeological theory and practice including taphonomy, quantification, seasonality, prey selection, domestication and behavioural ecology. Come prepared to apply what you have read to the analysis and interpretation of example data! In the labs, you will learn the basics of skeletal identification for the most common types of vertebrate remains recovered from archaeological sites: fish, birds, carnivores, rodents and ungulates. Open lab hours will allow you to practice and reinforce these skills.
ANTHRO 9100 Professional Development
This grad course is open to MA and PhD students in the Anthropology department.
So you want a job when you leave here? Don’t panic! Anthropologists develop a suite of valuable transferrable skills that you can apply in a wide range of job settings. This course aims to help you identify and strengthen your marketable skills and learn to present yourself effectively to prospective employers both within and outside of academia. These skills include time management, oral communication, grant writing, teaching, leadership, research, project management, editing, interpersonal skills, and an appreciation of ethical and civic responsibility. This course emphasizes peer and participatory learning and includes a series of collaborative and individual exercises that will not only serve to enrich your skills, but also provide you with concrete experiences to add to your CV. Past group projects have included designing and implementing a full day anthropology workshop for the Thames Valley District School Board’s (TVDSB) gifted itinerant program and developing grad student resources for the department website.
I welcome applications from students interested in community archaeology and digital heritage, especially those who might want to join the Inuvialuit Living History team. I would also be happy to supervise research projects involving zooarchaeology, gender archaeology, Arctic archaeology and archaeological practice (especially in Canada).
M. Beth Compton, PhD candidate: Engaging with Archaeological Collections in Community Archaeology: examining the value of digital representations and physical replicas. Joint supervisor with Neal Ferris.
Rebecca Goodwin, PhD candidate: Engendering the Inuvialuit past.
Jeff Grieve, MA candidate: Digital maps of Inuvialuit cultural heritage as a tool for reflecting and representing Indigenous epistemology and ontology.
Jason Lau, MA candidate: Visual media as a tool for co-creation in Indigenous digital heritage.
Former PhD Students
2018 John Moody: “Petrographic Analysis of Inuit Ceramics” Joint supervisor with Linda Howie.
2017 Jordon Munizzi: Rethinking Holocene Ecological Relationships Among Caribou, Muskoxen, and Human Hunters on Banks Island, NWT, Canada: A Stable Isotope Approach. Joint supervisor with Fred Longstaffe (Earth Sciences).
2016 Laura Kelvin: There is more than One Way to do Something Right: Applying Community-Based Approaches to an Archaeology of Banks Island, N.W.T.
2011 Lindsay Foreman: Seasonal Subsistence in Late Woodland Southwestern Ontario: An Examination of the Relationships between Resource Availability, Maize Agriculture and Faunal Procurement and Processing.
Former MA Students
2018 Shane McCartney: Guided by Smoke: A Comparative Analysis of Early Late Woodland Smoking Pipes from the Arkona Cluster.
2017 Arwen Johns: The Richness of Food: A Zooarchaeological Analysis of Huaca Santa Clara and Huaca Gallinazo, North Coast of Peru. Joint supervisor with Jean-Francois Millaire.
2016 Kathryn Kotar: Variability in Thule Inuit Subsistence Economy: A Faunal Analysis of OkRn-1, Banks Island, N.W.T.
2016 Tessa Plint (MSc, Earth Sciences): Giant beaver (Castoroides) palaeoecology inferred from stable isotopes. Joint supervisor with Fred Longstaffe.
2014 Colleen Haukaas: New Opportunities in Digital Archaeology: The Use of Low-Cost Photogrammetry for 3D Documentation of Archaeological Objects from Banks Island, NWT.
2013 Claire Venet-Rogers: A Study of Faunal Consumption at the Gallinazo Group Site, Northern Coast of Peru. Joint supervisor with Jean-Francois Millaire
2010 John Sweeney: Faunal Analysis of a Ritual Deposit from the Dorchester Iroquoian Village Site (AfHg-24).
2010 John Moody: Pioneering Thule Inuit Subsistence: A Faunal Analysis of Tiktalik (NkRi-3).
2008 Tomasz Porawski: A Multivariate Taphonomic Approach to Understanding Midden Formation in Thule Inuit Contexts: A Case Study from Arctic Canada.
2006 Jacob Anderson: Pre-Dorset life in Southwestern Hudson Bay as seen through Lithic Reduction.