Cemetery Archeology Project More Than Essay

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Examination of Compiled Birth and Death Date Data

By averaging the ages of death for all of the seventeen (17) males in the data set, as well as the eighteen (18) females, it was possible to calculate the average age of death for each gender. For the thirty-five (35) subjects studied in this section of Oak Grove Cemetery, males were deceased at an average age of 63.65 years, while females were deceased at an average age of just 59 years. If one presupposes an average lifespan for this historical era of 60 years, the average difference of 4.65 years of lengthened life afforded to males represents an additional 7 per cent of lifespan simply on the basis of gender. While there may exist certain physiological tendencies which lead to males living for a longer time than females, the variety of socioeconomic disadvantages imposed on females during this historical era would appear to have had a prohibitive effect on the lengthening of life.

Another aspect of this study which bears further consideration is disparity between those who died before the turn of the 20th century, and those who died during the last years of the 19th century:

- for males who were deceased during the 1800's, the average age at the time of death was 54.85 years, while females were deceased at an average age of 43.63 years, for a difference of -- 11.22 years between genders.

- for males who were deceased during the 1900's, the average age at the time of death was 69.8 years, while females were deceased at an average age of 71.3 years, for difference of +1.5 years between genders.

- for males, the difference between dying in the 20th century and the 19th century equates to an average lengthened lifespan of 14.95 years, (69.8 -- 54.85 = 14.95).

- for females, the difference between dying in the 20th century and the 19th century equates to an average lengthened lifespan of 27.67 years, (71.3 -- 43.63 = 27.67).

Conclusions

For females living in the 19th century, when gender inequality was still largely institutionalized, the lengthening of lifespan due to medical advancement was not equally distributed. Females during this era were typically deceased at an earlier age than males, most likely due to the physical hardships of multiple pregnancies, and rudimentary female health practices. This data confirms the original hypothesis that females did not experience the same scale of lengthened lifespan as their male counterparts. However, during the 20th century, advancements in medical techniques and equalization of women's rights enabled females to enjoy…

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