Photo of Jennifer Bengtson

Dr. Jennifer Bengtson, Ph.D.

Associate Professor
History and Anthropology
Office: Pacific Hall 303

Ph.D. in Anthropology, Michigan State University 
M.A. in Anthropology, Michigan State University 
B.A. in Anthropology, Minnesota State University-Moorhead

My research focuses on the intersection of archaeology and biological anthropology. I am particularly interested in inter-and intra-community variation in experiences of gender and childhood in Mississippian societies. My dissertation approached such issues from skeletal and mortuary perspectives, but I have recently focused more specifically on ceramic manufacture, decoration, and exchange as a means of studying identity in the past. I have done field work in the North Dakota, the Central Illinois River Valley, and Southeast Missouri.

I also do research and teach courses in forensic anthropology-- the application of the techniques and methods of biological anthropology to questions of medicolegal significance. I am excited about my work with Southeast forensic chemist Dr. Jim McGill to develop new research projects that facilitate collaboration between anthropology and chemistry students.

I regularly consult with local and regional law enforcement on cases involving human skeletal remains. I also provide guidance on cultural resource management issues in Southeast Missouri in cooperation with the State Historic Preservation Office

Academic Interests: 
• Mississippian Archaeology 
• Oneota Archaeology 
• Mortuary analysis 
• Bioarchaeology 
• Ceramic analysis 
• Anthropology of gender 
• Anthropology of childhood 
• Forensic Anthropology

Personal Interests: 
• Running 
• Camping 
• Cooking and eating vegan food 
• Friends and family 
• Dogs


(573) 651-2146
Fax: (573) 651-5188
Caranahan Hall 311E

Department of History and Anthropology
One University Plaza, MS4150
Cape Girardeau, Missouri 63701