Archaeology Magazine Archive

A publication of the Archaeological Institute of America

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Diana O'Carroll in the citadel on Gozo island, Malta. (Courtesy Diana O'Carroll)

What is it about archaeology that makes people want to take their clothes off? History International may have started the disrobing trend with the TV show The Naked Archaeologist. The word "naked" is a reference to the way the show "exposes" archaeology's secrets but it could also mean "shameless" such as when the show took part in the hype over the discovery of the supposed "Tomb of Jesus." Meanwhile, I just received Desmond Morris's new book The Naked Man (St. Martin's Press, $25.99), which follows The Naked Woman and The Naked Ape in explaining how evolution has shaped our bodies. (I suspect that decency laws will prevent Morris from extending his series to include a book about children.) But some of the blame, or credit, for the archaeological vestiphobia rests with Diana O'Carroll who hosts the "Naked Archaeology" podcast for the Cambridge University-based

Every month, O'Carroll produces 30 minutes of interviews and original reporting about some of the most intriguing news in archaeology. Trained as a bioarchaeologist, she makes the science in her stories accessible and does it without hyperbole. The last segment of each show, called "Backyard Archaeology," features a discovery from England and nearby countries. Previous podcasts have included stories on Aurignacian bone flutes from Germany, the diet of Australopithecus africanus, and the tomb of King Herod. But if you want to hear new stories you'll have to keep your shirt on until the 17th of each month.