An archaeologist gave birth to a new photographic genre by asking fellow scientists to post snaps of themselves digging while expecting
Suzanne Pilaar Birch was seven when she caught the archaeology bug on a family trip to Jamestown, Virginia, the first permanent English settlement in the Americas. “Oh this is so cool!” she declared. “I want to come back here and dig.” So when, 24 years later – and now a professional archaeologist based at the University of Georgia and still devoted to digging – she was invited on a field trip in Cyprus, it should have been a no-brainer. Except that she would be six months pregnant on the trip.
It was her first baby, due in August, a child that she’d put off having for eight years because of her career, and she’d vowed not to fly far or do fieldwork that summer. Plus, in more than 10 years working in archaeology (she specialises in analysing animal bones to reconstruct ancient environment and diet), she’d never met a single pregnant woman on a field trip.