Lecture 4 Ch 5-6 - Lecture 4: Chapter 5 - Biology in the...

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Lecture 4: Chapter 5 - Biology in the Present and Chapter 6 - Living Primates
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race or biological affinity “In its most common biological usage, the term “race” refers to geographically-patterned phenotypic variation within a species.” (Turnbaugh et al . 2002:91). most often - skin colour breeding population versus whole species Human ‘ varieties ’?
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Pre-1300s – generally, slow, gradual overland travel – variation not striking 1300s – long-distance, port-to-port ocean travel, continuum of human variation in between ports missed – more striking visible, outward human differences 1700s - Linnaeus and taxonomy – grouping animals and plants and grouping humans within the animal kingdom (without clear evolutionary implications yet) and even splitting humans into groups
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Johann Friedrich Blumenbach (1752-1840) – also split humans into their own groups, based on skull morphology/head shape – these traits were static and did not change over time – races, to Blumenbach, were set in stone – did not look at living populations.
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Various schemes to account for variation as ‘races’
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Monogenists believed that all human groups were descended from Adam and Eve. Environmental conditions worked on human plasticity or their physiological capacity to change to create the visible differences. Evolutionary change was not implied and there was no conflict with the Biblical account of Creation.
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Polygenists believed that human groups were not all descended from Adam and Eve, but from a number of original pairs. The different descendant groups were considered separate species .
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Biological determinism is “The concept that various attributes and behaviors (e.g., intelligence, values, morals) are governed by biological (genetic) factors; the inaccurate association of various behavioral attributes with certain biological traits, such as skin color.” (Turnbaugh et al . 2002:89).
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biological affinity: landmarks for measuring midorbital and interorbital breadths
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biological affinity: presence of wormian or ‘Inca bones’ – with higher prevalence in First Nations
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shovelled incisors esp. First Nations And East Asians
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Carabelli’s cusps Mesiolingual aspect (front, tongue-side) of first maxillary molar in adults – esp. European descent
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Franz Boas – early 1900s studied the variation between immigrant parents and American-born offspring and noticed that there were some changes in cephalic index (head length to head breadth). So, head shapes changed with being born in the U.S. even in a small way (environmental and dietary factors). Blumenbach’s (and others’) supposedly static racial traits were not static at all.
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compared the allele frequencies for 17 polymorphic traits of various groups around the world, “. ..close to 94% of human genetic diversity occurs within [Lewontin’s (1972)] very large [geographical] groups [i.e. not between the groups]” (Turnbaugh et al . 2002:82).
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This note was uploaded on 03/01/2011 for the course ANTHRO 1A03 taught by Professor Eveningclass during the Spring '08 term at McMaster University.

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Lecture 4 Ch 5-6 - Lecture 4: Chapter 5 - Biology in the...

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