This lively text offers a unique, holistic approach to human diversity for undergraduate courses in fields including anthropology, medicine, human ecology, and general education. Leading medical anthropologist Elisa Sobo rises to the challenge of truly integrating biology and culture. Her inviting writing style and fascinating examples make important new ideas from complexity theory and epigenetics accessible to undergraduates from all disciplines, regardless of academic background. Students learn to conceptualize human biology and culture concurrently—as an adaptive biocultural capacity that has helped to produce the rich range of human diversity seen today. With clearly structured topics, an extensive glossary and suggestions for further reading, this text makes a complex, interdisciplinary topic a joy to teach.
The field of biocultural diversity is emerging as a dynamic, integrative approach to understanding the links between nature and culture and the interrelationships between humans and the environment at scales from the global to the local. Its multifaceted contributions have ranged from theoretical elaborations, to mappings of the overlapping distributions of biological and cultural diversity, to the development of indicators as tools to measure, assess, and monitor the state and trends of biocultural diversity, to on-the-ground implementation in field projects. This book is a unique compendium and analysis of projects from all around the world that take an integrated biocultural approach to sustaining cultures and biodiversity. The 45 projects reviewed exemplify a new focus in conservation: this is based on the emerging realization that protecting and restoring biodiversity and maintaining and revitalizing cultural diversity and cultural vitality are intimately, indeed inextricably, interrelated. Published with Terralingua and IUCN
This book is devoted to the cultural and biological dimensions and values of landscapes, linking the concepts of biodiversity, landscape and culture and presenting an essential approach for landscape analysis, interpretation and sustainable dynamics. Early chapters explore the concepts and values of biocultural landscapes, before addressing the methodology to identify the relationship between biological and cultural diversity. The volume continuous with a series of case studies and with an exploration of the key role of biocultural diversity in contemporary landscape ecology. Readers will learn the importance of landscapes for different fields of natural and human sciences and are confronted to the trans-disciplinary nature of the landscape concept itself. A hierarchical approach to landscapes, in which they are composed of interacting (eco)systems, is shown to be essential in recognizing their emergent properties. In this work, the biocultural values of landscapes are explored through their diversity in geographical scopes, methodological approaches and conceptual assumptions. Authors from Asia, Europe and North-America present diverse research experiences and views on biocultural landscapes, their pattern, conservation and management. Landscape ecologists will find this work particularly appealing, as well as anyone with an interest in sustainable landscape development, nature conservation or cultural heritage management. This volume is the outcome of a symposium on “Biodiversity in Cultural Landscapes”, organized in the framework of the 8th IALE World Congress, held in Beijing in 2011.
Contestations over knowledge – and who controls its production – are a key focus of social movements and other actors that promote food sovereignty, agroecology and biocultural diversity. This book critically examines the kinds of knowledge and ways of knowing needed for food sovereignty, agroecology and biocultural diversity. ‘Food sovereignty’ is understood here as a transformative process that seeks to recreate the democratic realm and regenerate a diversity of autonomous food systems based on agroecology, biocultural diversity, equity, social justice and ecological sustainability. It is shown that alternatives to the current model of development require radically different knowledges and epistemologies from that on offer today in mainstream institutions (including universities, policy think tanks and donor organisations). To achieve food sovereignty, agroecology and biocultural diversity there is a need to re-imagine and construct knowledge for diversity, decentralisation, dynamic adaptation, and democracy. The authors critically explore the changes in organisations, research paradigms, and professional practice that could help transform and co-create knowledge for a new modernity based on plural definitions of wellbeing. Particular attention is given to institutional, pedagogical, and methodological innovations that can enhance cognitive justice by giving hitherto excluded citizens more power and agency in the construction of knowledge. The book thus contributes to the democratisation of knowledge and power in the domain of food, environment and society.
Author: Manuel Pardo-de-Santayana
Publisher: Berghahn Books
Release Date: 2013-09-15
Genre: Social Science
The study of European wild food plants and herbal medicines is an old discipline that has been invigorated by a new generation of researchers pursuing ethnobotanical studies in fresh contexts. Modern botanical and medical science itself was built on studies of Medieval Europeans’ use of food plants and medicinal herbs. In spite of monumental changes introduced in the Age of Discovery and Mercantile Capitalism, some communities, often of immigrants in foreign lands, continue to hold on to old recipes and traditions, while others have adopted and enculturated exotic plants and remedies into their diets and pharmacopoeia in new and creative ways. Now in the 21st century, in the age of the European Union and Globalization, European folk botany is once again dynamically responding to changing cultural, economic, and political contexts. The authors and studies presented in this book reflect work being conducted across Europe’s many regions. They tell the story of the on-going evolution of human-plant relations in one of the most bioculturally dynamic places on the planet, and explore new approaches that link the re-evaluation of plant-based cultural heritage with the conservation and use of biocultural diversity.
Evolution and Medicine provides an accessible introduction to the new field of evolutionary medicine. Evolutionary concepts help explain why we remain vulnerable to disease, how pathogens and cancer cells evolve, and how the diseases that affected our evolutionary ancestors have shaped our biology.
Author: Sara Stinson
Publisher: John Wiley & Sons
Release Date: 2012-03-19
Genre: Social Science
This comprehensive introduction to the field of human biology covers all the major areas of the field: genetic variation, variation related to climate, infectious and non-infectious diseases, aging, growth, nutrition, and demography. Written by four expert authors working in close collaboration, this second edition has been thoroughly updated to provide undergraduate and graduate students with two new chapters: one on race and culture and their ties to human biology, and the other a concluding summary chapter highlighting the integration and intersection of the topics covered in the book.
Author: Molly K. Zuckerman
Publisher: John Wiley & Sons
Release Date: 2016-10-17
Biocultural or biosocial anthropology is a research approach that views biology and culture as dialectically and inextricably intertwined, explicitly emphasizing the dynamic interaction between humans and their larger social, cultural, and physical environments. The biocultural approach emerged in anthropology in the 1960s, matured in the 1980s, and is now one of the dominant paradigms in anthropology, particularly within biological anthropology. This volume gathers contributions from the top scholars in biocultural anthropology focusing on six of the most influential, productive, and important areas of research within biocultural anthropology. These are: critical and synthetic approaches within biocultural anthropology; biocultural approaches to identity, including race and racism; health, diet, and nutrition; infectious disease from antiquity to the modern era; epidemiologic transitions and population dynamics; and inequality and violence studies. Focusing on these six major areas of burgeoning research within biocultural anthropology makes the proposed volume timely, widely applicable and useful to scholars engaging in biocultural research and students interested in the biocultural approach, and synthetic in its coverage of contemporary scholarship in biocultural anthropology. Students will be able to grasp the history of the biocultural approach, and how that history continues to impact scholarship, as well as the scope of current research within the approach, and the foci of biocultural research into the future. Importantly, contributions in the text follow a consistent format of a discussion of method and theory relative to a particular aspect of the above six topics, followed by a case study applying the surveyed method and theory. This structure will engage students by providing real world examples of anthropological issues, and demonstrating how biocultural method and theory can be used to elucidate and resolve them. Key features include: Contributions which span the breadth of approaches and topics within biological anthropology from the insights granted through work with ancient human remains to those granted through collaborative research with contemporary peoples. Comprehensive treatment of diverse topics within biocultural anthropology, from human variation and adaptability to recent disease pandemics, the embodied effects of race and racism, industrialization and the rise of allergy and autoimmune diseases, and the sociopolitics of slavery and torture. Contributions and sections united by thematically cohesive threads. Clear, jargon-free language in a text that is designed to be pedagogically flexible: contributions are written to be both understandable and engaging to both undergraduate and graduate students. Provision of synthetic theory, method and data in each contribution. The use of richly contextualized case studies driven by empirical data. Through case-study driven contributions, each chapter demonstrates how biocultural approaches can be used to better understand and resolve real-world problems and anthropological issues.
Author: Michael P. Muehlenbein
Publisher: Cambridge University Press
Release Date: 2010-07-29
Genre: Social Science
Wide-ranging and inclusive, this text provides an invaluable review of an expansive selection of topics in human evolution, variation and adaptability for professionals and students in biological anthropology, evolutionary biology, medical sciences and psychology. The chapters are organized around four broad themes, with sections devoted to phenotypic and genetic variation within and between human populations, reproductive physiology and behavior, growth and development, and human health from evolutionary and ecological perspectives. An introductory section provides readers with the historical, theoretical and methodological foundations needed to understand the more complex ideas presented later. Two hundred discussion questions provide starting points for class debate and assignments to test student understanding.
Author: John R. Stepp
Publisher: University of Georgia Press
Release Date: 2002-01-01
Genre: Social Science
The most comprehensive collection of papers in the field to date, this volume presents state-of-the-art research and commentary from more than fifty of the world's leading ethnobiologists. Covering a wide range of ecosystems and world regions, the papers center on global change and the relationships among traditional knowledge, biological diversity, and cultural diversity. Specific themes include the acquisition, persistence, and loss of traditional ecological knowledge; intellectual property rights and benefits sharing; ethnobiological classification; medical ethnobotany; ethnoentomology; ethnobiology and natural resource management; homegardens; and agriculture and traditional knowledge. The volume will be of interest to scholars in anthropology, ecology, and related fields and also to professionals in conservation and indigenous rights organizations.
Author: Paul B. Baltes
Publisher: Cambridge University Press
Release Date: 2006-06-19
The book focuses on the developmental analysis of the brain-culture-environment dynamic and argues that this dynamic is interactive and reciprocal. Brain and culture co-determine each other. As a whole, this book refutes any unidirectional conception of the brain-culture dynamic. Each is influenced by and modifies the other. To capture the ubiquitous reach and significance of the mutually dependent brain-culture system, the metaphor of biocultural co-constructivism is invoked. Distinguished researchers from cognitive neuroscience, cognitive psychology and developmental psychology review the evidence in their respective fields. A special focus of the book is its coverage of the entire human lifespan from infancy to old age.
Author: Holger Schutkowski
Publisher: Springer Science & Business Media
Release Date: 2006-02-28
This book explores the relationship between cultural strategies and their biological outcomes, combining for the first time an ecosystems approach with cultural anthropological, archaeological and evolutionary behavioural concepts. Beginning with resource use and food procurement behaviour, the text examines major subsistence modes, the circumstances and dynamics of large-scale subsistence change, the effect of social differentiation on resource use and the effects of subsistence behaviour on population development and regulation.