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Wilson, Joseph
Lecturer- Anthropology & History
Arts & Sciences
Division of Global Studies/History/Political Science
Maxcy Hall


    Joseph A.P. Wilson is a historical anthropologist and religion scholar whose work is primarily focused upon the Native Peoples of North America and East Central Asia.  He is a Lecturer in the Division of Humanities and Social Sciences.  He graduated Phi Beta Kappa and Summa cum Laude in Anthropology (BS, Kent State University).  He holds advanced degrees in Oriental and African Religions (MA, University of London SOAS), Industrial Archaeology (MS, Michigan Technological University), and Cultural Anthropology (PhD, University of Florida).  Before coming to the University of New Haven in 2012, he taught a wide range of subjects at several universities including High Point University, Elon University, the University of Florida, and Lander University, and he worked as a molecular DNA technologist at the Greenwood Genetic Center.

    His most recent work examines Native North American weapons technologies (primarily bow-and-arrow) in U.S. ethnographic collections and compares them to similar weapons and materials from historical East Asia.  This work is the basis for a current book project.  His other publications cover topics including history of religions, archaeology, molecular genetics, and history of technology.  He is an Assistant Editor at the Journal for the Study of Religion, Nature 
Academic Credentials


    Doctor of Philosophy, Cultural Anthropology, 2011
    University of Florida
    Dissertation: “Material Cultural Correlates of the Athapaskan Expansion: A Cross-Disciplinary 
    Master of Science, Industrial Archaeology, 2004
    Michigan Technological University
    Minor emphasis in History of Technology
    Thesis: “The History and Archaeology of the Huron Copper Milling Complex”
    Master of Arts, Oriental and African Religions, 2002
    School of Oriental and African Studies (SOAS), University of London
    Minor emphasis in Social Anthropology
    Thesis: “Na?-pa’i-Chos ni| A-lHas-bsKya?s-sam|| (The Buddhist Chos: Protected by a Celestial 
    Lord?—The Nabaxu: Athabaskan?)”
    Bachelor of Science, Anthropology, 2000
    Kent State University
    Minor in Religious Studies
    Honors Thesis: “Religious Pluralism as a Result of Early American Industry: The Anthropology of 
    Technological Development;” (University Honors with Distinction)
    Phi Beta Kappa; Summa cum Laude

    Peer Reviewed Publications

    “The Cave Who Never Was: Outsider Archaeology and Failed Collaboration in the U.S.A.,” Public Archaeology, 11 (3), 2012 [IN PRESS].

    “The Life of the Saint and the Animal: Asian Religious Influence in the Medieval Christian West” Journal for the Study of Religion, Nature and Culture, 3 (2), 2009 169-194.
    “A New Perspective on Later Migrations: The Possible Recent Origin of Some Native American Haplotypes” Critique of Anthropology, 28 (3), 2008 267-278.

    (Second author with Michael J. Friez†) “Novel FGFR3 Mutations in Exon 7 and Implications for Expanded Screening of Achondroplasia and Hypochondroplasia: a Response to Heuertz et al”
    European Journal of Human Genetics, 16 (3), 2008 277-278.
    †Both authors contributed equally to this paper.

    “Relatives Halfway Round the World: Southern Athabascans and Southern Tarim Fugitives,” Limina: A Journal of Historical and Cultural Studies, 11, 2005 67-78.

    Chapters in Edited Volumes

    “The Influence of a Mining Failure: The Huron Mining Company and Early Experimentation in Milling Technologies,” in Allison K. Hoagland, Erik Nordberg, and Terry S. Reynolds, eds. New Perspectives on Michigan's Copper Country, Calumet, MI: Quincy Mine Hoist Association Press, 2007: pp. 27-41.

    “Scientific Dogma or Indigenous Geographic Knowledge: Was America a Land Without History Prior to European Contact?” in Mark B. Spencer and Lucretia Scoufos, eds. Native Being ↔Being  Native: Identity and Difference, Proceedings of the Fifth Native American Symposium,  Southeastern Oklahoma State University, Durant OK, 2005: pp. 46-53.  ISBN # 0-9763852-2-8

    Encyclopedia Entries

    “Anthropology and Native Americans” in The Encyclopedia of American Indian Literature, Alan R. Verlie and Jennifer McClinton-Temple, eds. NY: Facts on File, Inc.  2007

    “God is Red” in The Encyclopedia of American Indian Literature, Alan R. Verlie and Jennifer McClinton-Temple, eds. NY: Facts on File, Inc. 2007.

    Book Reviews

    Review of Readings in Indigenous Religions. Graham Harvey, ed. London: Continuum, 2002, Journal for the Study of Religion, Nature, and Culture, 3 (1), 2009: pp. 154-156.

    Review of Sacred Ecology, 2nd edn. Fikret Berkes. London: Routledge, 2009, Journal for the Study of Religion, Nature, and Culture, 3 (1), 2009: pp. 157-158.

    Review of Mad Jesus: The Final Testament of a Huichol Messiah from Northwest Mexico.  Timothy J. Knab.  Albuquerque: University of New Mexico, 2004, International Social Science  Review, 80 (1-2), 2005: pp. 71-72.

    Review of Fishing for Heritage: Modernity and Loss along the Scottish Coast. Jane Nadel-Klein.   Oxford: Berg, 2003, Industrial Archaeology, 29 (2), 2003: pp. 74-76

    Review of Shamanism and the Ancient Mind: A Cognitive Approach to Archaeology. James L. Pearson. Walnut Creek, CA: AltaMira, 2002, International Social Science Review, 79 (3-4), 2003:  pp. 154-156.

    Review of Spider Woman Walks This Land: Traditional Cultural Properties and The Navajo  Nation. Kelli Carmean. Walnut Creek, CA: AltaMira, 2002, American Indian Quarterly, 26 (4), 2002: pp. 674-675.