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Cuadernos de la Facultad de Humanidades y Ciencias Sociales. Universidad Nacional de Jujuy

versión On-line ISSN 1668-8104


BARBOZA, M.C.; MENDONCA, O.J.  y  BORDACH, M.A.. Mandibular sexual dimorphism in a formative collection: SJTil, Tilcara, Jujuy. Cuad. Fac. Humanid. Cienc. Soc., Univ. Nac. Jujuy [online]. 2007, n.32, pp.53-63. ISSN 1668-8104.

The mandible is one of the many anatomic elements in the human skeleton that have proved to be useful in sex determination. In the mandible, the recognition of sexual dimorphism is accomplished by observing certain morphologic and structural regions such as the shape of the gonium, the menton, the mandibular branch, etc. In theory, the discriminatory capacity of this traditional set of variables may be improved with the arrival of techno-methodological innovations, particularly those that increase and/or complement the already available diagnostic procedures. One of these innovations, based in the analysis of the anatomic conformation of the inflexion of the posterior border of the mandibular branch is that of Loth and Henneberg (1996). However, the diagnostic effectiveness of this anatomic trait has been questioned by several authors. Because the expression of sexual dimorphism may vary between populations, it is necessary to test the supposed utility of the new technique, particularly in the case of skeletal materials of archaeological origin. The goal of this paper is to test the diagnostic efficiency of the new technique using a set of mandibles from skeletons recovered at the Formative Site SJTil 20, Tilcara town, Jujuy Province. These materials consist of exceptional funerary findings from the Early Ceramic Period in the area, that were systematically excavated and recovered. The skeletons show strong sexual dimorphism and so do the mandibles. We describe, compare, analize, discuss, and interpret the similarities and differences, strengths and weaknesses found when using the new technique on bioarchaeological remains.

Palabras clave : Human osteology; Mandibles; NW; Argentina; Sexual dimorphism; Tilcara town.

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