Introduction to Anthropology; Chapter 1
∙ Anthropology: The study of humankind, in particular.
∙ 4 fields: Archaeology, Biological anthropology, Social/cultural anthropology, & Linguistics.
└ Archaeology: The study of human history & prehistory through the excavation of sites and the
analysis of artefacts & other physical remains. (Maritime archaeology, historical archaeology,
monumental archaeology, Palaeolithic/cave archaeology.)
└ Biological anthropology: The science of human zoology, evolution, and ecology. (Bioarchaeology,
bog bodies, paleoanthropology, primatology)
└ Social/cultural anthropology: The comparative study of human societies & cultures & their
└ Linguistics: The scientific study of language and its structure, including the study of morphology,
syntax, phonetics, and semantics.
∙ Archaeological Methods: Chronological methods to figure out how old things are.
∙ First bipeds-fossils: Ardipithecus, and the Australopithecines.
∙ Human origins – the eternal question – Historically 2 paths of understand: Creation myths/religious
explanations & Scientific framework.
└ Creation Myths: In the beginning. Origin of the world. Supernatural creator. Mirrors belief
systems – worldview and social structure. Constantly change and adapt. Always developed by
└ Scientific Framework: Scientific method – induction. Specific observations, general rules &
testing. Hypothetico-Deductive method. Hypothesis based on educated guesses, look for
specific predicted data, testing. Theory development. Only true when it cannot be proved wrong.
Evolution & Genetics; Chapter 2 & Chapter 3
The earliest human ancestor evolved from a species that lived some 5 to 8 million years ago. The
ancestral species was the last common ancestor we shared with chimpanzees.
When did humans evolve? 200,000 ya
Evolution: Change in gene frequency over time.
Species: A group of creatures which breed together and produce variable and fertile offspring.
Darwin: The Origin of Species by Means of Natural Selection.
└ The Great Chain of Being
└ Adam and Eve
└ Earth made in 6 days
Arch Bishop Ussher assumed the world was created 6000ya on October 4004BC, at 9am, based on his
interpretation of the Bible. (WRONG)
└ Catastrophists: If the world was only 6000 years old than the only way to explain canyons and
mountains is through the catastrophic events, (George Cuvier).
└ Challenged by Reverent Brunet – slow erosion.
└ Buffon: Processes are known, natural and observable.
└ Hutton: Slow working, uniform & natural processes = hundreds of thousands of years.
└ Lyell: The present is the key to the past.
└ Reverend Chalmer: Ussher was wrong, not the Bible.
Uniformitarianism: They theory that the earth’s features are the result of long-term processes that
continue to operate in the present as they did in the past.
Catastrophism: The view that the earth’s geological landscape is the result of violent cataclysmic events.
└ Compared biology and taxonomy
└ Categorised the world’s plants & animals. (Kingdom, phylum, class, order, family, genus, species)
└ Binomial system
1. Adaptation to the environment.
2. Progression towards perfection.
3. Inheritance of acquired characteristics.
(Only 1 & 2 are right)
Darwin & Wallace:
└ Mechanism of Natural Selection
└ Natural selection – Variation existing in same species allows for adaptation.
└ Survival of the Fittest
└ Change occurs as an adaptation to a changing local environment.
└ No direction.
└ = Natural selection.
Natural Selection: Survival of the Fittest
1. Favorable variations promote survival of the individuals in whom they appear.
└ Traits are inherited by their offspring, whose chances of survival are also better.
└ Favorable variations eventually spread through the population.
2. Unfavorable variations don’t promote survival
3. For any species, natural forces act to favor the expansion of some traits and to favor the
removal of other traits from future generations.
Sexual Selection: A type of natural selection that operates on only one sex within a species. It’s the
result of competitions for mates, and it can lead to sexual dimorphism with regard to one or more traits.
Mendel’s Law; breeding
└ Each observed trait derives from a package of information (gene) acquired by the individual at
└ For each trait, an individual possesses two genes: one from each parent.
› Two matching genes homozygous state: for a given trait, individual receives the same gene
form from parents. Green & Green.
› Heterozygous state: Individual receives 2 different gene forms from parents. Green &
└ The whole set of different forms for a given gene are known as alleles.
Dominant allele: A
Recessive allele: a
Genotype: genetic make-up/trait.
Phenotype: physical traits
└ A=B > O
└ Genotype | Phenotype
AB = AB
AO = A
BO = B
AA = A
BB = B
If you know the phenotype, can you predict the genotype? No, you can’t always.
Genome: The gene pool.
DNA is a double helix
Genetic code is made up of 4 cytosine: AGTC
Group of tree bases: codons
Gene is a part of your DNA
Chromosomes (23 pairs, total of 46)
XX = female, XY = male
Processes of Evolution: (Random or Not Random)
└ Mutation = R
└ Natural selection = NR
└ Genetic drift = R
(Genetic Drift 1) Bottle neck effect: when something kills off a certain part of a population.
(Genetic Drift 2) Founders: when certain genes isolate and breed to create their own population.
└ Gene flow = NR
4 fields: archaeology, biological anthropology, social/cultural anthropology, & linguistics. Archaeology: the study of human history & prehistory through the excavation of sites and the analysis of artefacts & other physical remains. (maritime archaeology, historical archaeology, monumental archaeology, palaeolithic/cave archaeology. ) Biological anthropology: the science of human zoology, evolution, and ecology. (bioarchaeology, bog bodies, paleoanthropology, primatology) Social/cultural anthropology: the comparative study of human societies & cultures & their development. Linguistics: the scientific study of language and its structure, including the study of morphology, syntax, phonetics, and semantics. Archaeological methods: chronological methods to figure out how old things are. First bipeds-fossils: ardipithecus, and the australopithecines: human origins the eternal question historically 2 paths of understand: creation myths/religious explanations & scientific framework. Mirrors belief systems worldview and social structure. Hypothesis based on educated guesses, look for specific predicted data, testing. Only true when it cannot be proved wrong. Evolution & genetics; chapter 2 & chapter 3.