Sloan R. Williams, PhD
Department Head and Associate Professor
Building & Room:
1007 W. Harrison Street
Office Phone Voice:
I use molecular genetic techniques to identify population substructure and differentiation in both modern and archaeological populations in order to study biological and cultural evolution in the Andes, and more recently in East Africa. I am also interested in the ethical issues associated with genetic research involving living and extinct humans; and burial practices and mortuary archaeology. Important themes in my work include population change and continuity, social complexity and genetic patterning, and the biological components of ethnicity. My current projects include identifying the origins of the Swahili civilization on the Kenyan coast in collaboration with Chap Kusimba and Ryan Raaum. Shannon Novak and I are beginning a genetic analysis of human remains from the historic Spring Street African American Cemetery in New York.
See our Andean Anthropology web page for other UIC and Field Museum archaeologists working in the Andes.
Kusimba, C.M., I. Busolo, R. Raaum, S. Williams, M. Mchulla, J. Lorenz, J. Monge. Moving beyond the Preindustrial Trade and Urbanism in East Africa to Decoding Ancient and Modern Swahili Cultural Diversity. In Cultural Dynamics of Swahili Society. Edited by Myong- Shik Kwon. Dahae,Seoul,Korea. (Pp. 149- 175)
Kelly Knudson, Sloan R. Williams, Kathy Forgey, Rebecca Osborn and Ryan Williams The Geographic Origins of Nasca Trophy Heads using Strontium, Oxygen, and Carbon Isotope Data. Journal of Anthropological Archaeology 28(2):244-257
Sloan R. Williams Genetic Genealogy: The Woodson Family’s Experience. Culture, Medicine and Psychiatry, 29(2):225-252
Kathleen Forgey and Sloan R. Williams Nasca Trophy Heads: Evidence of warfare or ancestor cults? In Interacting with the Dead: Perspectives on Mortuary Archaeology for the New Millenium, eds. Gordon Rakita, Jane E. Buikstra, Lane A. Beck and Sloan R. Williams. University of Florida Press
Gordon Rakita, Jane E. Buikstra, Lane A. Beck and Sloan R. Williams, eds. Interacting with the Dead: Perspectives on Mortuary Archaeology for the New Millenium, University of Florida Press
PhD, Northwestern University, 1990