Thursday, February 17, 2011

Biocultural/Evolutionary Anthropology

On Tuesday, I was invited to give a lecture on the Inca by a colleague and friend at CSU Fullerton. I was happy to visit the first college I thought at, and my alma mater.
I was surprised to see the many changes this department has undergone, one in particular called my attention. They have a new program called "Biocultural/Evolutionary Anthropology" and the description really got me thinking about some of the stuff (like Chagnon) we've discussed in class. Here it is:
"Biocultura/evolutionary anthropology is "an explicit evolutionary perspective" that integrates data from primatology, paleoanthropology, human biology, biomedicine, and human behavioral ecology to understand the adaptive nature of human biology and behavior, while attending to the social environment as an important determinant of, and constraint on behavior."

This definition seemed very vague and kind of contradictory. Are they saying that genes drive behavior but the environment determines it? What do you guys think?
It's interesting to contrast this to epigenetics.

No comments:

Post a Comment