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Lecture

ANP202 Lecture Note Physical Anthropology

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Department
Anthropology
Course Code
ANP 201
Professor
All

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1/8/14 Overview of Physical Anthropology Chapter 1 Big Questions *What is anthropology? -the study of all humankind in all contexts, in all times (today, kya, mya). Thus, anthro uses a broad comparative (holistic) approach *What is physical anthropology? -the study of human biological evolution & human biological variation. Seeks why we are what we are as biological organisms *What makes us human and different from other animals? -Bipedalism 6 mya -Nonhoning chewing (absence of diastema) 5.5 mya -Material culture and tools 2.5 mya -Speech 2.5 mya -Hunting (cooperative) 1 mya -Domestication of plants 11 kya (BNMSHD) *How do physical anthropologists know what they know? -through the scientific method (the scientific method is a self-correcting approach to knowledge acquisition) -6 Steps to Scientific Method: Observations of natural world, identify a problem, formulate a hypothesis, test the hypothesis using data, provisionally accept (or reject) the hypothesis, replicate the hypothesis test/formulate an alternative hypothesis -This is an empirical process -Hypothesis: A tentative statement that potentially explains specific phenomenon observed in the natural world -Scientific Theory: an explanation about the natural world built through rigorous hypothesis tests, testable, falsifiable, and modifiable 4 Fields of Anthropology *Cultural anthro *Archaeology: study of past societies and their cultures *Linguistic anthro: study of language, especially how language is structured, evolution of language and the social and cultural contexts for language *Physical (Biological) anthro: the study of human evolution and variation, both past and current 2 Underlying Key Concepts in Physical Ant
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