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Paleofantasy What Evolution Really Tells Us About Sex Diet And How We Live

Author: Marlene Zuk
Publisher: W. W. Norton & Company
ISBN: 039308986X
Size: 14.39 MB
Format: PDF, ePub, Mobi
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“With . . . evidence from recent genetic and anthropological research, [Zuk] offers a dose of paleoreality.”—Erin Wayman, Science News We evolved to eat berries rather than bagels, to live in mud huts rather than condos, to sprint barefoot rather than play football—or did we? Are our bodies and brains truly at odds with modern life? Although it may seem as though we have barely had time to shed our hunter-gatherer legacy, biologist Marlene Zuk reveals that the story is not so simple. Popular theories about how our ancestors lived—and why we should emulate them—are often based on speculation, not scientific evidence. Armed with a razor-sharp wit and brilliant, eye-opening research, Zuk takes us to the cutting edge of biology to show that evolution can work much faster than was previously realized, meaning that we are not biologically the same as our caveman ancestors. Contrary to what the glossy magazines would have us believe, we do not enjoy potato chips because they crunch just like the insects our forebears snacked on. And women don’t go into shoe-shopping frenzies because their prehistoric foremothers gathered resources for their clans. As Zuk compellingly argues, such beliefs incorrectly assume that we’re stuck—finished evolving—and have been for tens of thousands of years. She draws on fascinating evidence that examines everything from adults’ ability to drink milk to the texture of our ear wax to show that we’ve actually never stopped evolving. Our nostalgic visions of an ideal evolutionary past in which we ate, lived, and reproduced as we were “meant to” fail to recognize that we were never perfectly suited to our environment. Evolution is about change, and every organism is full of trade-offs. From debunking the caveman diet to unraveling gender stereotypes, Zuk delivers an engrossing analysis of widespread paleofantasies and the scientific evidence that undermines them, all the while broadening our understanding of our origins and what they can really tell us about our present and our future.

Paleofantasy What Evolution Really Tells Us About Sex Diet And How We Live

Author: Marlene Zuk
Publisher: W. W. Norton & Company
ISBN: 0393081370
Size: 19.52 MB
Format: PDF, Kindle
View: 6885
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We evolved to eat berries rather than bagels, to live in caves rather than cities, to run barefoot rather than play rugby—or did we? As Marlene Zuk reveals, theories about how our ancestors lived—and why we should emulate them—are often based on pseudoscience and speculation rather than actual research. Taking us to the cutting edge of biology, Zuk explains that evolution can work much faster than was previously realized, meaning that we are not biologically the same as our caveman ancestors. She shows how our fetishized visions of an ideal evolutionary past in which we ate, lived, and reproduced as we were “meant to” can lead us astray and distract us from more interesting considerations of how we differ from our ancestors. Along the way, she debunks the caveman diet, discusses whether we're really designed to run barefoot, and considers modern-day courtship and child-rearing practices in the context of how our ancestors lived.

Race Monogamy And Other Lies They Told You

Author: Agustín Fuentes
Publisher: Univ of California Press
ISBN: 0520285999
Size: 56.82 MB
Format: PDF, Kindle
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There are three major myths of human nature: humans are divided into biological races; humans are naturally aggressive; and men and women are truly different in behavior, desires, and wiring. In an engaging and wide-ranging narrative, Agustín Fuentes counters these pervasive and pernicious myths about human behavior. Tackling misconceptions about what race, aggression, and sex really mean for humans, Fuentes incorporates an accessible understanding of culture, genetics, and evolution, requiring us to dispose of notions of “nature or nurture.” Presenting scientific evidence from diverse fields—including anthropology, biology, and psychology—Fuentes devises a myth-busting toolkit to dismantle persistent fallacies about the validity of biological races, the innateness of aggression and violence, and the nature of monogamy and differences between the sexes. A final chapter plus an appendix provide a set of take-home points on how readers can myth-bust on their own. Accessible, compelling, and original, this book is a rich and nuanced account of how nature, culture, experience, and choice interact to influence human behavior.

Sex On Six Legs

Author: Marlene Zuk
Publisher: HMH
ISBN: 0547549172
Size: 49.45 MB
Format: PDF, Kindle
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A biologist presents a “consistently delightful” look at the mysteries of insect behavior (The New York Times Book Review). Insects have inspired fear, fascination, and enlightenment for centuries. They are capable of incredibly complex behavior, even with brains often the size of a poppy seed. How do they accomplish feats that look like human activity—personality, language, childcare—with completely different pathways from our own? What is going on inside the mind of those ants that march like boot-camp graduates across your kitchen floor? How does the lead ant know exactly where to take her colony, to that one bread crumb that your nightly sweep missed? Can insects be taught new skills as easily as your new puppy? Sex on Six Legs is a startling and exciting book that provides answers to these questions and many more, examining not only the bedroom lives of creepy crawlies but also some of our own long-held assumptions about learning, the nature of personality, and what our own large brains might be for. “Smart, engaging . . . Zuk approaches her subject with such humor and enthusiasm for the intricacies of insect life, even bug-phobes will relish her account.” —Publishers Weekly, starred review

Sex Genes Rock N Roll

Author: Robert C. Brooks
Publisher: ReadHowYouWant.com
ISBN: 1459623320
Size: 73.25 MB
Format: PDF, ePub
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Why are people getting fatter? Why do so many rock stars end up dead at 27? Is there any hope of curbing population growth, rampant consumerism and the environmental devastation they wreak? Evolutionary biologist Rob Brooks argues that the origins of these twenty-first century problems can be found where the ancient forces of evolution collide with modern culture and economics. In Sex, Genes and Rock n Roll Brooks explores a tasting platter of topics, from the frivolous to the tragic falling in love, making music, our obsession with rock n roll, sexual conflict, fertility, obesity, consumption, ageing and more illustrating how evolution stands alongside economics, anthropology, psychology and political science in shaping our world.

The Flexible Phenotype

Author: Theunis Piersma
Publisher: Oxford University Press
ISBN: 0199233721
Size: 16.83 MB
Format: PDF, ePub, Docs
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This book attempts a true synthesis of animal physiology, behaviour, and ecology by developing an empirical argument that describes the intimate connections between animal phenotype and environment, using the results of a long-term research programme on migrant shorebirds and their invertebrate prey.

The Exultant Ark

Author: Jonathan Peter Balcombe
Publisher: Univ of California Press
ISBN: 0520948645
Size: 32.47 MB
Format: PDF
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Nature documentaries often depict animal life as a grim struggle for survival, but this visually stunning book opens our eyes to a different, more scientifically up-to-date way of looking at the animal kingdom. In more than one hundred thirty striking images, The Exultant Ark celebrates the full range of animal experience with dramatic portraits of animal pleasure ranging from the charismatic and familiar to the obscure and bizarre. These photographs, windows onto the inner lives of pleasure seekers, show two polar bears engaged in a bout of wrestling, hoary marmots taking time for a friendly chase, Japanese macaques enjoying a soak in a hot spring, a young bull elk sticking out his tongue to catch snowflakes, and many other rewarding moments. Biologist and best-selling author Jonathan Balcombe is our guide, interpreting the images within the scientific context of what is known about animal behavior. In the end, old attitudes fall away as we gain a heightened sense of animal individuality and of the pleasures that make life worth living for all sentient beings.

Population Genetics

Author: Matthew Hamilton
Publisher: John Wiley & Sons
ISBN: 1444362453
Size: 26.58 MB
Format: PDF, ePub, Docs
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This book aims to make population genetics approachable, logical and easily understood. To achieve these goals, the book’s design emphasizes well explained introductions to key principles and predictions. These are augmented with case studies as well as illustrations along with introductions to classical hypotheses and debates. Pedagogical features in the text include: Interact boxes that guide readers step-by-step through computer simulations using public domain software. Math boxes that fully explain mathematical derivations. Methods boxes that give insight into the use of actual genetic data. Numerous Problem boxes are integrated into the text to reinforce concepts as they are encountered. Dedicated website at www.wiley.com/go/hamiltongenetics This text also offers a highly accessible introduction to coalescent theory, the major conceptual advance in population genetics of the last two decades.

Sexual Selections

Author: Marlene Zuk
Publisher: Univ of California Press
ISBN: 9780520240759
Size: 65.29 MB
Format: PDF, Kindle
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A provocative tour of recent findings in animal sexuality and evolutionary biology seeks to demonstrate how anthropomorphism and gender politics have affected our knowledge of the natural world and shows how a broader approach, based on feminist biology, can bring about a more rounded understanding.