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Christopher Watts

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What do evolutionary anthropologists study?
Study of how our closest extant biological relatives: non-human primate
The multidisciplinary study of the biological evolution of humans and non-
human primates. Best known for excavating fossils.
They investigate the advent of and changes in human cultural activities,
including tool use, subsidence patterns, and disease.
Also investigate the evolutionary history of behavior in human and non-
human primates.
Human Variation
Determine spatial and temporal variations in human features.
All humans are members of one species, called homo sapiens
Medical anthropology
The study of how social, environmental, and biological factors influence
health and illness of individuals at the community, regional, national, and
global levels, is a recent addition to evolutionary anthropology.
Investigate spatial and temporal variations in human survival, disease, and
health disparity.
Forensic anthropology
The skeletal remains of humans
Seek to determine the age, sex, stature, ancestry, and any trauma or disease
of the deceased.
How do evolutionary anthropologists conduct their research?
3 types of research: descriptive, casual, and applied.
Charles Darwin and the Theory of Natural Selection
- applied himself to determining how species evolved
- Malthus proposed that human populations could potentially grow at
geometric rates whereas food supplies can only increase at an arithmetic rate;
he concluded that death, disease, and natural restraint limit human
population growth. In other words, many more individuals are born than can
possibly survive.
- Darwin applied certain aspects of Malthus’s ideas about competition and
checks to human population growth to animals in nature.
- by selection Darwin meant that the environment chooses certain physical
aspects of an organism, so some individuals are more likely to survive than
others. Thus, if these favorable variants are passed on to offspring, then
successive changes over an immensely long time will result in the formation
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