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ISBN-13 9781478601012ISBN-10 1478601019
ISBN-10 1577667433ISBN-13 9781577667438
Author(s): Clare Boulanger
Publisher: Waveland Press
Copyright year: © 2013 Pages: 384

In a writing style that will captivate those new to the subject, Boulanger presents an understanding of human biological and cultural evolution that is both scientific and humanistic, in keeping with classic anthropological ideals. The aim of this reasonably priced text is to help students think critically about what being human has been, what it is at present, and what it may be in the future. While the book focuses on the anthropological subfields of biological anthropology and archaeology, information and insights are also drawn from cultural anthropology and anthropological linguistics. Boulanger’s absorbing treatment, in contrast to other texts on human evolution, features an opening chapter that seeks to negotiate fairly, without defensiveness or condescension, a pathway for creationists to follow into the topic. The next three chapters provide background on the history of evolutionary science, the biology of inheritance and population change, and primatology. Chapters 5 through 9 focus on human biocultural evolution from the time of the ancestor we share with chimpanzees through the development of agriculture and the founding of states. The last chapter deals with the issue of race—how it has affected our interpretation of the past and how it continues to influence the present. In addition to an extensive glossary, the fully illustrated textbook features numerous topic-enhancing sidebars, questions for discussion and review, and student exercises.