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date: 25 January 2021

Abstract and Keywords

This chapter concerns modern military death, with examples of conflict primarily drawn from Western societies in the 20th century. Military death leaves a number of physical traces that are amenable to an archaeological analysis: the human remains of the dead; the sites of military conflict, burial, and commemoration; monumental and funerary architecture, often including representations of the body; and also the personal artefacts, material, documents, and ephemera that are associated with soldiers in life and come to have a memorial function in the wake of a soldier’s death. These material traces may furnish insights into a range of questions: public versus private mourning; the relationships between soldier, state, and civilian; the transition between living memory and history; and the evolving nature of memorial objects and practices over time.

Keywords: commemoration, conflict, identification, military, repatriation, war memorials

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