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Human Origins And Environmental Backgrounds

Author: Hidemi Ishida
Publisher: Springer Science & Business Media
ISBN: 0387297987
Size: 37.46 MB
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Advances in fossil studies relating to the origin of Homo sapiens have strengthened the hypothesis that our direct ancestors originated on the African continent. Most researchers also agree that the time when prehumans diverged from the last common ancestor was in the early part of the Late Miocene epoch. Focus must now shift from determining the times and places of hominid origins to clarifying hominid evolutionary problems, such as the selective factors and acquisition processes of hominid bipedalism. In March of 2003, researchers from Africa, Europe, Japan and the United States convened in Kyoto for a symposium on Human Origins and Environmental Backgrounds, an interdisciplinary effort to consider these evolutionary puzzles, to report current research and to exchange thoughts towards better understanding the relationship among environmental changes, adaptive mechanisms and human origins. This book is the result of that symposium, and includes a diverse and unique set of papers on topics such as hominid evolution, dispersal and morphology, and the origins of bipedalism.

Primate Biogeography

Author: Shawn M. Lehman
Publisher: Springer Science & Business Media
ISBN: 0387298711
Size: 27.75 MB
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Primate Biogeography is a subject rarely addressed as a discipline in its own right. This comprehensive source introduces the reader to Primate Biogeography as a discipline. It highlights the many factors that may influence the distribution of primates, and reveals the wide range of approaches that are available to understanding the distribution of this order. The biogeography of primates in the past is a major component of our understanding of their evolutionary history and is an essential component of conservation biology. This book will appeal to primatologists, physical anthropologists, zoologists, and undergraduates in these areas.

Axial Character Seriation In Mammals

Author: Aaron G. Filler
Publisher: Universal-Publishers
ISBN: 1599424177
Size: 19.11 MB
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Modern biology is increasingly focused on the role of repetitive anatomical structures in the embryological construction of organisms. The discovery of the homeobox (Hox) genes by Edward Lewis in 1978 ushered in a series of stunning revelations such as the fundamental commonality of insect segments and mammalian vertebrae - a wild and ridiculed idea first proposed by Etienne Geoffroy Saint-Hilaire in 1822 that has now been proven correct. Axial Character Seriation in Mammals is an unabridged edition of the 1986 Harvard University PhD Thesis of Aaron G. Filler, MD, PhD that pioneered our modern reassessment of mammalian vertebrae in the light of the new homeotic biology. As Dr. Filler points out in fascinating detail, the leading explanations of similarity among animals before Darwin were arrayed around the vertebrae of the spine in works by Sir Richard Owen, Johann Wolfgang Goethe and Geoffroy Saint-Hilaire. This was the theoretical structure that was overturned and demolished by Darwin's ideas about similarity due to common descent. In a stunning reversal, modern homeotic genetics has shown that repeating structures are indeed critical to understanding animal similarity. This work is the first study of the modern era that views vertebrae as a key to unlocking the way in which Nature has organized repeating biological structures. For the 150 years since the Great Academy Debate of 1830 appeared to demolish Geoffroy Saint-Hilaire's ideas, vertebrae have been seen as no more than some bones in Vertebrate animals that are involved in support and locomotion. Axial Character Seriation in Mammals, however, explores the fascinating traces of how the morphogenetic genes sculpt and organize serially repeating structures, thus re-establishing the vertebrae as a legitimate and compelling subject of modern science.

The Paleoanthropology And Archaeology Of Big Game Hunting

Author: John D. Speth
Publisher: Springer Science & Business Media
ISBN: 9781441967336
Size: 65.13 MB
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Since its inception, paleoanthropology has been closely wedded to the idea that big-game hunting by our hominin ancestors arose, first and foremost, as a means for acquiring energy and vital nutrients. This assumption has rarely been questioned, and seems intuitively obvious—meat is a nutrient-rich food with the ideal array of amino acids, and big animals provide meat in large, convenient packages. Through new research, the author of this volume provides a strong argument that the primary goals of big-game hunting were actually social and political—increasing hunter’s prestige and standing—and that the nutritional component was just an added bonus. Through a comprehensive, interdisciplinary research approach, the author examines the historical and current perceptions of protein as an important nutrient source, the biological impact of a high-protein diet and the evidence of this in the archaeological record, and provides a compelling reexamination of this long-held conclusion. This volume will be of interest to researchers in Archaeology, Evolutionary Biology, and Paleoanthropology, particularly those studying diet and nutrition.

African Genesis

Author: Sally C. Reynolds
Publisher: Cambridge University Press
ISBN: 1107019958
Size: 74.34 MB
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"The discovery of the first species of African hominin, Australopithecus africanus, from Taung, South Africa in 1925, launched the study of fossil man in Africa. New discoveries continue to confirm the importance of this region to our understanding of human evolution. Outlining major developments since Raymond Dart's description of the Taung skull and, in particular, the impact of the pioneering work of Phillip V. Tobias, this book will be a valuable companion for students and researchers of human origins. It presents a summary of the current state of palaeoanthropology, reviewing the ideas that are central to the field, and provides a perspective on how future developments will shape our knowledge about hominin emergence in Africa. A wide range of key themes are covered, from the earliest fossils from Chad and Kenya, to the origins of bipedalism and the debate about how and where modern humans evolved and dispersed across Africa"--

E O Wilson And B F Skinner

Author: Paul Naour
Publisher: Springer Science & Business Media
ISBN: 9780387894621
Size: 44.76 MB
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Reviewers have characterized Paul Naour's A Dialogue Between Sociobiology and Radical Behaviorism, which includes brief introductions by E.O. Wilson and B.F. Skinner's elder daughter, Julie Vargus, as an idea book. The work will undoubtedly have a significant academic market and provide students and scholars in biology, ethology, psychology, anthropology, sociology and economics a strong foundation in twentieth century history and systems. Praise for A Dialogue Between Sociobiology and Radical Behaviorism: - E.O. Wilson says of the book: ". . . excellent, an outstanding addition to the history of ideas. It will put Fred Skinner back in the pantheon and, providing context, serve as an excellent introduction to the content and central truths in radical behaviorism. Needless to say, I'm also grateful to have my work following Sociobiology given proper attention." -David Sloan Wilson, author of Darwin’s Cathedral writes: "E.O. Wilson and B.F. Skinner agreed that the human capacity for change is both a product of genetic evolution and an evolutionary process in its own right. Yet, the paradigms of sociobiology and radical behaviorism went in very different directions. Paul Naour's insightful analysis of a taped conversation between Wilson and Skinner goes beyond the historical significance of the conversation and helps to integrate the two paradigms for the future." -Carl Haywood writes: "The present question is whether evolution by natural selection is a useful set of concepts for the development of psychology. Naour’s proposed confluence of radical behaviorism and sociobiology suggests not only that it is, but also that radical behaviorism shares with sociobiology a debt and an allegiance to Darwinism."

Eine Kurze Geschichte Der Menschheit

Author: Yuval Noah Harari
Publisher: DVA
ISBN: 364110498X
Size: 27.44 MB
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Krone der Schöpfung? Vor 100 000 Jahren war der Homo sapiens noch ein unbedeutendes Tier, das unauffällig in einem abgelegenen Winkel des afrikanischen Kontinents lebte. Unsere Vorfahren teilten sich den Planeten mit mindestens fünf weiteren menschlichen Spezies, und die Rolle, die sie im Ökosystem spielten, war nicht größer als die von Gorillas, Libellen oder Quallen. Vor 70 000 Jahren dann vollzog sich ein mysteriöser und rascher Wandel mit dem Homo sapiens, und es war vor allem die Beschaffenheit seines Gehirns, die ihn zum Herren des Planeten und zum Schrecken des Ökosystems werden ließ. Bis heute hat sich diese Vorherrschaft stetig zugespitzt: Der Mensch hat die Fähigkeit zu schöpferischem und zu zerstörerischem Handeln wie kein anderes Lebewesen. Anschaulich, unterhaltsam und stellenweise hochkomisch zeichnet Yuval Harari die Geschichte des Menschen nach und zeigt alle großen, aber auch alle ambivalenten Momente unserer Menschwerdung.

Jenseits Von Natur Und Kultur

Author: Philippe Descola
Publisher: Suhrkamp Verlag
ISBN: 3518768409
Size: 12.28 MB
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Seit der Zeit der Renaissance ist unser Weltbild von einer zentralen Unterscheidung bestimmt: der zwischen Natur und Kultur. Dort die von Naturgesetzen regierte, unpersönliche Welt der Tiere und Dinge, hier die Menschenwelt mit ihrer individuellen und kulturellen Vielfalt. Diese fundamentale Trennung beherrscht unser ganzes Denken und Handeln. In seinem faszinierenden Buch zeigt der große französische Anthropologe und Schüler von Claude Lévi-Strauss, Philippe Descola, daß diese Kosmologie alles andere als selbstverständlich ist. Dabei stützt er sich auf reiches Material aus zum Teil eigenen anthropologischen Feldforschungen bei Naturvölkern und indigenen Kulturen in Afrika, Amazonien, Neuguinea oder Sibirien. Descola führt uns vor Augen, daß deren Weltbilder ganz andersartig aufgebaut sind als das unsere mit seinen »zwei Etagen« von Natur und Kultur. So betrachten manche Kulturen Dinge als beseelt oder glauben, daß verwandtschaftliche Beziehungen zwischen Tieren und Menschen bestehen. Descola plädiert für eine monistische Anthropologie und entwirft eine Typologie unterschiedlichster Weltbilder. Auf diesem Wege lassen sich neben dem westlichen dualistischen Naturalismus totemistische, animistische oder analogistische Kosmologien entdecken. Eine fesselnde Reise in fremde Welten, die uns unsere eigene mit anderen Augen sehen läßt.