Human Remains and Violence

An Interdisciplinary Journal

Edited by Elisabeth Anstett, Jean-Marc Dreyfus and Caroline Fournet

Human Remains and Violence
Access Online New Issue Alerts

Journal Information

  • ISSN: 2054-2240 (Online)
  • Frequency: Biannual (Spring and Autumn)


Human Remains and Violence: An interdisciplinary journal is a biannual, peer-reviewed publication which draws together the different strands of academic research on the dead body and the production of human remains en masse, whether in the context of mass violence, genocidal occurrences or environmental disasters. Inherently interdisciplinary, the journal publishes papers from a range of academic disciplines within the humanities, social sciences and natural sciences. Human Remains and Violence invites contributions from scholars working in a variety of fields and interdisciplinary research is especially welcome.

Human Remains and Violence was created thanks to funding from the European Research Council under the European Union’s Seventh Framework Programme (FP/2007-2013) / ERC Grant Agreement n° 283-617.

Open Access

From 2017, Human Remains and Violence has been a fully Open Access journal, funded by the University of Manchester and the research programme ‘Transfunéraire’, supported by a grant from the ANR (Agence Nationale de la Recherche).

Editorial Board


Dr Elisabeth Anstett, CNRS (France)
Dr Jean-Marc Dreyfus, The University of Manchester (UK)
Pr Caroline Fournet, Groningen University (the Netherlands)

Board Members

Pr Pascal Adalian, Aix-Marseille Université (France)
Pr Sébastien P. Boret, Tohoku University (Japan)
Dr Zuzanna Dziuban, Austrian Academy of Sciences (Austria)
Dr Roxana Ferlini, independent expert
Pr Joost Fontein, University of Johannesburg (RSA)
Pr Sévane Garibian, Université de Genève (Switzerland)
Dr Anne Guillou, Maison des Sciences de l’Homme – Mondes (France)
Dr Pierre Guyomarc’h, ICRC (Switzerland)
Dr Anouch Kunth, CNRS (France)
Dr Rémi Korman, EHESS (France)
Pr José López  Mazz, Universidad de la República (Uruguay)
Pr Claudia Merli, Uppsala University (Sweden)
Dr Tony Platt, University of Berkeley (USA)
Dr Benoît Pouget, Sciences Po Aix (France)
Pr Mario Ranalletti, Université d’Angers (France)
Pr Ciraj Rassool, University of the Western Cape (RSA)
Pr Finn Stepputat, DIIS (Danemark)
Pr Tim Thompson, Teesside University (UK)
Pr Sarah Wagner, George Washington University (USA)


Notes for Contributors

The journal welcomes original research articles on studies of any geographical region and historical period and from academic disciplines including History, Sociology, Social Anthropology, Archaeology, Law, Criminology, Forensic Science, Forensic Anthropology, Forensic Pathology, Philosophy, Cultural Studies and Political Science. All articles will be double-blind peer-reviewed.

Articles should be prepared according to the journal’s guidelines. Submissions which depart substantially from the journal’s style may be returned to the author before it can be considered.

  • Authors should send their article to the editors at [email protected]
  • The preferred word processing format is MS Word. PDFs cannot be accepted. 
  • Include a separate title page, containing the article title, author’s name, affiliation, email address, acknowledgements (and any other identifying information) as you would wish them to appear in the journal to allow for blinded review.
  • Articles should be between 6,000–8,000 words including notes.
  • An abstract (150 words or less) and 3 to 6 selected key words should be included at the beginning of the article.
  • Figures should be submitted as separate files and with a high resolution (see guidelines). Figures embedded within Word documents will not be accepted.
  • See the journal author resources for more information on how to write and prepare your article and other MUP policies
  • Authors retain the copyright of their article. Upon acceptance, you will be asked to sign a licence to publish agreement with MUP

Open Access

Articles are published under a CC-BY-NC-ND (Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-NoDerivatives) licence.

The journal is free for authors to submit and publish their work. However, authors whose work has been accepted in the journal and who have access to institutional or research Open Access funding are asked to contribute a voluntary APC of £500 towards the sustainability of the journal. The ability to pay an APC will not influence editorial decisions. Contact the Journals Manager for more information.

Call for Papers


Call for Papers for a special issue of Human Remains and Violence

Burial and the politics of dead bodies in pandemic times

Guest editors:

Finn Stepputat (Danish Institute for International Studies),
Gaëlle Clavandier (Saint Etienne Jean Monnet University) and
Graham Denyer Willis (Cambridge University)

Epidemics tend to reveal the state’s management and rationalisation of public health. Crucially, too, acute mortality also reveals the what-and-whereabouts of dead bodies, and their ordering. Amidst an exceptional moment, the COVID-19 pandemic has brought with it acute discussions and disturbing images of queues of people waiting to receive urns with the remains of their loved ones in Wuhan, of military trucks bringing away coffins in Bergamo, and of temporary mass burials at the potter’s field on Hart Island in New York City. Here, and in myriad places, the pace of dead bodies has outstripped the capacity of existing institutions and spaces with assumed responsibility for the proper treatment and/or disposal of dead bodies. The scale of the management of death has been reordered in dramatic ways, such that in São Paulo, Brazil, drones have become important to visualise mass burial in cemeteries from a different height.

Epidemics and the shocking imagery and discussion that surrounds them are by no means new, nor unaddressed by scholars and scholar-practitioners. However, the current and ongoing crisis carries with it a conspicuous set of conditions, and with them, a cohort of global scholars caught up in varied experiences and scales of uncertainty with death and illness.

With three guest editors, Human Remains and Violence seeks to gather scholarly manuscripts, critical, empirically based reflections and/or primary research reports from scholars around the world for a Special Issue that would begin to address questions about the varied management of dead bodies, globally, in the wake of COVID-19. Potential contributions and collaborations might attend to the following kinds of inquiry:

  1. To document patterns in the shifting treatment of dead bodies, including how under-resourced and/or unprepared state institutions attend to care; what kinds of conflicts have developed over the fate of dead bodies; how various institutions, authorities and publics have engaged in actions or discussions of (proper) disposal of the dead;
  2. To identify changes and continuities in relation to former situations of ‘surplus death’ – disease related or otherwise – to see how this reflects or announces larger changes in formations of authority, power, and norms around the world. Such changes might also address the spatiality and materiality of death, burial and its governance by state or non-state organisations;
  3. What kind of analytical lenses can be used for understanding continuities and changes in relation to similar past epidemics, at different scales? To reassess existing frameworks or to sketch out novel analytical tools and theories for understanding practices and discourses surrounding dead bodies in times of surplus death.
  4. What does the (mis)management and irrationalisation of human remains in the current moment reveal about everyday political economy, capitalism and burial, its fractures or trajectories?

Human Remains and Violence is an open access, peer reviewed (double blind) journal published by Manchester University Press


 July 1, 2020: Submission of abstract (1-2 pages) to [email protected]

  • August 1: Notification of acceptance
  • October 15, 2020: Submission of full paper, max. 8.000 words (all included) and beginning of the double-blind peer-reviewing process.
  • Autumn 2021: Publication

Abstracts are accepted in English, French, Spanish, Portuguese, and Italian.


See here for our full ethics statement.


Human Remains and Violence is a fully Open Access journal. Users are allowed to read, download, copy, distribute, print, search and link to the full-text articles under a CC-BY-NC-ND licence: 


Please complete our Library Recommendation Form and send it to your Acquisitions Librarian.

Library Recommendation Form Word Document

Library Recommendation Form PDF

Newsletter Sign Up

Manchester University Press

Your cart is empty.

Select your shipping destination to estimate postage costs

(Based on standard shipping costs)

Final cost calculated on checkout
Promotional codes can be added on Checkout