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Human Niche Diversit1

Human Niche Diversit1 - culture has its own distinctive...

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Human Niche Diversity Theories of niche (such as CEP & related models) primarily designed to analyze interactions between different species; but of course anthropologists are interested primarily in niche differences within a single species ( Homo sapiens ) Because of cultural flexibility (and technology), humans are able to occupy extremely wide range of environments, and to adopt extremely wide range of niches Furthermore, specific human groups can become highly specialized in ways of utilizing env. (i.e., niche), and use the same env. in different ways (either sequentially, via cultural change/evolution, or simultaneously, as in Swat case analyzed by Barth--see below) This has led many ecological anthropologists to argue that each human population or
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Unformatted text preview: culture has its own distinctive niche However, different cultures are not the same as different species, since they can 1) interbreed, 2) borrow traits, or even 3) merge into single population These possibilities make it tricky to apply ecological niche theory to analysis of interaction between diff. human populations/cultures However, if we keep in mind that with humans we are talking about ecological populations and not necessarily reproductively isolated ones, niche theory can be useful for analyzing processes of diversification, competition, and cooperation among human societies In particular, can be a useful tool for analyzing cultural/ethnic diversity...
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