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Latest Current Anthropology Stories

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2010-05-13 07:37:02

Bared teeth are a prominent and eye-catching feature on many historical and archaeological artifacts, and are commonly interpreted as representing death, aggression and the shamanic trance. But a study in the forthcoming issue of Current Anthropology argues that the bared-teeth motif often expresses something a bit less sinister: the smile. Alice V. M. Samson, Faculty of Archaeology at Leiden University, the Netherlands, and Bridget M. Waller, Department of Psychology, University of...

2009-10-05 15:18:33

A new study suggests that high mortality rates in small-bodied people, commonly known as pygmies, may be part of the reason for their small stature. The study, by Jay Stock and Andrea Migliano, both of the University of Cambridge, helps unravel the mystery of how small-bodied people got that way. The article appears in the October issue of Current Anthropology. Adult males in small-bodied populations found in Africa, Asia and Australia are less than four feet, 11 inches (150 centimeters)...

2008-12-31 15:57:17

Although most women would choose a slender shape over an hourglass figure and believe men would do the same, new research suggests larger waists come with hidden health benefits. A study recently published in Current Anthropology points out that a waist-to-hip ratio of larger than 0.8 is prevalent in countries where women are stronger, more competitive and better able to handle stress. This sheds new light on medical evidence that suggests a waist-to-hip ratio of 0.7 or lower is preferable...

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2008-10-14 15:25:00

UO anthropologist reviews historical records, finds links to fertility, hormones and reproductive pressures Reproduction pressures and rising fertility explain why women suffered a more rapid decline in dental health than did men as humans transitioned from hunter-and-gatherers to farmers and more sedentary pursuits, says a University of Oregon anthropologist. The conclusion follows a comprehensive review of records of the frequencies of dental cavities in both prehistoric and living human...


Word of the Day
penuche
  • A fudgelike confection of brown sugar, cream or milk, and chopped nuts.
'Penuche' is a variant of 'panocha,' a coarse grade of sugar made in Mexico. 'Panocha' probably comes from the Spanish 'panoja, panocha,' ear of grain.
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