biological by nuhman10


									                         Biological anthropology

Biological anthropology (also physical anthropology) is the branch of anthropology that studies,
in the context of other primates, the development of the human species. Biological anthropology
incorporates bio-cultural studies of human diversity, the ancestry of the human species; and the
comparative anatomy, behavior, history, and ecology, of historic and present-day primates. It
mostly studies hominid fossil evidence and their evolution and studies .

         Physical anthropology primarily studies primate fossils in history, their comparison and
contrast, why and when certain traits such as mandible and chin evolved or disappeared, nature
and environment on walking (bipedal or not), how the environment and resources affected the
fossil primates and did they use fire or not. It also primarily deals with primate classification in
the hominid tree and inclusion or exclusion of fossil evidence to and from the hominid tree and
the individual naming of the proposed species.

        It also studies why a species likely disappeared or diverged from each other in evolution.
Particularly what change occurred that affected the individuals to evolve similarly or differently.
Therefore physical anthropology closely works with pale anthropology and the physical evidence
since you need a tangible material to prove or disapprove something. It also focuses on fossil

         For instance, physical anthropology will focus on Australopithecus afarensis,
Paranthropus boisei, Homo erectus, bipedalism (full bipedalism or combined with arboreal), use
of fire (cooking gives more nutrient and energy), teeth structure and jaw strength (sagittal crest
(more the crest more they ate hard foods like nuts), did they eat hard food or soft food), relative
height and brain size of the species, opposable thumb, Out of Africa theory and multiregional
models, species replacement or mating between hominid species if that's the case, the time the
species likely appeared and/or went extinct, physical environment the species lived in (savanna,
desert), radiocarbon dating, chin (one of the differences between Homo sapiens species and
Homo erectus for instance), etc. It tries to give distinct characteristics and reasons to try to
understand the whole picture of human evolution.

        Physical anthropology uses the scientific method with extensive cross analysis and
revision if necessary.


Johann Friedrich Blumenbach

Physical anthropology emerged in the 18th century as the scientific study of race;[1] the first
prominent physical anthropologist was the German physician Johann Friedrich Blumenbach
(1752–1840) of Göttingen, who amassed a large collection of human skulls, and thus could cla im
empirical authority on the subject of human diversity. In the 1830s and 1840s, physical
anthropology was prominent in the debate about slavery, with the scientific, monogenist works
of the British abolitionist James Cowles Prichard (1786–1848) opposing those of the American
polygenist Samuel George Morton (1799–1851); the end of slavery rendered the central
anthropological matters mostly trivial.
Pierre Paul Broca

In the latter part of the 19th century, there emerged national anthropologic traditions. The French
physical anthropologists, led by Paul Broca (1824–1880), focused on cranial anatomy and its
minute variations. The German tradition, led by Rudolf Virchow (1821–1902), emphasized the
mutability of human form, the influence of environment and disease upon the human body, and
the lack of fit among race, nation, and culture. The American tradition concentrated upon the
“pacified” aboriginal (Indian) inhabitants of the North American continent, exhuming and
collecting skeletons as scientific objects, along with artifacts, languages, and culture (ways of
life); said investigational method became the “four- field approach” in anthropology.

The term biological anthropology incorporates the non-physical data (genetic markers, primate
behavior, et cetera) that, by mid-century, scientists had recognized existed. In contemporary
usage, the terms physical anthropology and biological anthropology are synonymous. The field
sub-division of the American Anthropological Association is the Biological Anthropology
Section, but the principal professional organization is the American Association of Physical

Franz Boas

In the US, after the Civil War (1861–65), physical anthropology was an arcane medical
speciality. In 1897, it was the Columbia University appointment of Franz Boas (1858–1942), that
propelled the field of anthropology into its modern academic structure. As a physical
anthropologist, Boas was hired for his expertise in measuring schoolchildren, and collecting of
Inuit skeletons. From his German education and training, Boas emphasized the mutability of the
human form; and minimize race (then a biology synonym) in favor of studying culture, (see
Cultural Relativism).

Aleš Hrdlička

American physical anthropology was developed by Ales Hrdlicka (1869–1943), at the
Smithsonian Institution, and by Earnest Hooton (1887–1954), at Harvard University. Hrdlicka, a
physician, studied physical antropology in France, under Leonce Manouvrier, before working at
the Smithsonian in 1902. Hooton, a Classics PhD from the University of Wisconsin, then entered
anthropology as an Oxford Rhodes Scholar, under R. R. Marett, and the anatomist Arthur Keith.
Harvard University hired Hooton in 1913; for the next decades, he trained most American
physical anthropologists, beginning with Harry L. Shapiro and Carleton S. Coon. As the leading
US student of race in the 1930s, Earnest Hooton struggled to differentiate “good” American
physical anthropology from “bad” German physical anthropology. Nonetheless, despite that
conflict of scientific interpretation, there was much intellectual continuity between Germans and
Americans, such as Eugen Fischer, Fritz Lenz, and Erwin Baur.

In 1951, in an influential report, Sherwood Washburn, a Hooton alumnus, re- invented the field
with a “new physical anthropology”. For the post–Second World War generation of
anthropologists, physical anthropology was transformed by withdrawing from the study of racial
typology to concentrate upon the study of human microevolution; away from classification, and
towards evolutionary process and history. Under Washburn’s lead, anthropology expanded to
comprehend paleoanthropology and primatology. Consequently, contemporary anthropology is
methodologically diverse, comprehending the cognate fields of animal behavior, human genetics,
and medical anatomy, et cetera.

Modern day physical anthropology is a scientific discipline and therefore holds no ideological
positions on anything. Like other scientific fields, fraud and fabrication are not tolerated and will
almost permanently negatively impact the person's reputation who manufactured the material.

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