Our understanding of vertebrate origins and the backbone of human history evolves with each new fossil find and DNA map. Many species have now had their genomes sequenced, and molecular techniques allow genetic inspection of even non-model organisms. But as longtime Nature editor Henry Gee argues in Across the Bridge, despite these giant strides and our deepening understanding of how vertebrates fit into the tree of life, the morphological chasm between vertebrates and invertebrates remains vast and enigmatic.
As Gee shows, even as scientific advances have falsified a variety of theories linking these groups, the extant relatives of vertebrates are too few for effective genetic analysis. Moreover, the more we learn about the species that do remain—from sea-squirts to starfish—the clearer it becomes that they are too far evolved along their own courses to be of much use in reconstructing what the latest invertebrate ancestors of vertebrates looked like. Fossils present yet further problems of interpretation. Tracing both the fast-changing science that has helped illuminate the intricacies of vertebrate evolution as well as the limits of that science, Across the Bridge helps us to see how far the field has come in crossing the invertebrate-to-vertebrate divide—and how far we still have to go.
The Annotated Origin
Charles Darwin Harvard University Press, 2009 Library of Congress QH365.O2 2009 | Dewey Decimal 576.82
Richley Crapo and Bonnie Glass-Coffin Utah State University Press, 2005 Library of Congress F1219.A6113 2005 | Dewey Decimal 972
Anonimo Mexicano is the first publication of the full Nahuatl text and English translation of a rare and important Native history of preconquest Mexico. Written circa 1600 by an anonymous Tlaxcaltecan author, it is an epic account of the settling of central Mexico by Nahua peoples from the northern frontier. They developed a sophisticated culture with powerful city states and an agricultural economy, fought great wars, established dynasties, and recorded their history and legends in painted books. The Mexica became the most powerful of these nations until their conquest by the Spanish with the help of the Tlaxcalteca, who were rivals of the Mexica and whose national origin tale was recorded in Anonimo Mexicano.
The controversial 1922 Federal Baseball Supreme Court ruling held that the "business of base ball" was not subject to the Sherman Antitrust Act because it did not constitute interstate commerce. In Baseball on Trial, legal scholar Nathaniel Grow defies conventional wisdom to explain why the unanimous Supreme Court opinion authored by Justice Oliver Wendell Holmes, which gave rise to Major League Baseball's exemption from antitrust law, was correct given the circumstances of the time.
Currently a billion dollar enterprise, professional baseball teams crisscross the country while the games are broadcast via radio, television, and internet coast to coast. The sheer scope of this activity would seem to embody the phrase "interstate commerce." Yet baseball is the only professional sport--indeed the sole industry--in the United States that currently benefits from a judicially constructed antitrust immunity. How could this be?
Drawing upon recently released documents from the National Baseball Hall of Fame, Grow analyzes how the Supreme Court reached this seemingly peculiar result by tracing the Federal Baseball litigation from its roots in 1914 to its resolution in 1922, in the process uncovering significant new details about the proceedings. Grow observes that while interstate commerce was measured at the time by the exchange of tangible goods, baseball teams in the 1910s merely provided live entertainment to their fans, while radio was a fledgling technology that had little impact on the sport. The book ultimately concludes that, despite the frequent criticism of the opinion, the Supreme Court's decision was consistent with the conditions and legal climate of the early twentieth century.
Shahab Ahmed Harvard University Press, 2017 Library of Congress BP167.5+ | Dewey Decimal 297.125163
A controversial episode in the life of the Prophet Muhammad concerns an incident in which he allegedly mistook words suggested by Satan as divine revelation. Muslims now universally deny that the Satanic verses incident took place. But Muslims did not always hold this view. Shahab Ahmed uses this case to explore how religions establish truth.
Bones of Contention is a behind-the-scenes look at the search for human origins. Analyzing how the biases and preconceptions of paleoanthropologists shaped their work, Roger Lewin's detective stories about the discovery of Neanderthal Man, the Taung Child, Lucy, and other major fossils provide insight into this most subjective of scientific endeavors. The new afterword looks at ways in which paleoanthropology, while becoming more scientific
in many ways, remains contentious.
"[An] un-put-downable book."—John Gribbon, Times Educational Supplement
"Not just another 'stones and bones' account of human evolution. It is Lewin's thesis, amply demonstrated, that paleoanthropology is the most subjective of sciences because it engages the emotions of virtually everyone; and since the evidence is scrappy, interpretation is everything. . . . A splendid, stirring, and eye-opening account, to be devoured."—Kirkus Reviews, starred review
"[Lewin shows] 'how very unscientific the process of scientific inquiry can be.'. . . Bones of Contention is . . . serious intellectual history."—Edward Dolnick, Wall Street Journal
"[Lewin] documents his thesis in persuasive detail. . . . The reader is carried along by the power of Mr. Lewin's reporting."—Robert Wright, New York Times Book Review
Columbus stumbled upon the New World while seeking the riches of the orient, yet native peoples of the Americas already held riches beyond his knowing. From maize to potatoes to native beans, a variety of crops unfamiliar to Europeans were cultivated by indigenous peoples of the Americas, with other foods like chilies and chocolate on hand to make diets all the more interesting (even when used in combination, as aficionados of molé will attest). Chilies to Chocolate traces the biological and cultural history of some New World crops that have worldwide economic importance. Drawing on disciplines as diverse as anthropology, ethnobotany, and agronomy, it focuses on the domestication and use of these plants by native peoples and their dispersion into the fields and kitchens of the Old World: tomatoes to Italy, chili peppers throughout Asia, cacao wherever a sweet tooth craves chocolate. Indeed, potatoes and maize now rank with wheat and rice as the world's principal crops. "The sweetness of corn on the cob is sweeter for knowing the long, winding way by which it has come into one's hands," observe Foster and Cordell. Featuring contributions by Gary Nabhan, Alan Davidson, and others, Chilies to Chocolate will increase readers' appreciation of the foods we all enjoy, of the circuitous routes by which they have become part of our diets, and of the vital role that Native Americans have played in this process.
Introduction, by Nelson Foster & Linda S. Cordell
1. Europeans' Wary Encounter with Tomatoes, Potatoes, and Other New World Foods, by Alan Davidson
2. The Renaissance of Amaranth, by Daniel K. Early
3. Vanilla: Nectar of the Gods, by Patricia Rain
4. Maize: Gift from America's First Peoples, by Walton C. Galinat
5. Beans of the Americas, by Lawrence Kaplan & Lucille N. Kaplan
6. The Peripatetic Chili Pepper: Diffusion of the Domesticated Capsicums Since Columbus, by Jean Andrews
7. Forgotten Roots of the Incas, by Noel Vietmeyer
8. A Brief History and Botany of Cacao, by John A. West
9. Quinoa's Roundabout Journey to World Use, by John F. McCamant
Epilogue: Native Crops of the Americas: Passing Novelties or Lasting Contributions to Diversity? by Gary Paul Nabhan
Appendix: Food Plants of American Origin
Traditionally, scholars have traced the origin of Christianity to a single source—the kingdom of God as represented in the message of the historical Jesus. Through a rhetorical critical analysis of one of the most important texts in early Christian literature (the Beelzebul controversy), Michael L. Humphries addresses the issue of Christian origins, demonstrating how the language of the kingdom of God is best understood according to its locative or taxonomic effect where the demarcation of social and cultural boundaries contributes to the emergence of this new social foundation.
The Beelzebul controversy exists in two versions— Q and Mark—and thereby allows the study to engage the import of the kingdom language at the point of juxtaposition between two distinct textual representations. This makes it possible to deal directly with the issue of the disparity of texts in the synoptic tradition. Humphries suggests that these two versions of the same controversy indicate two distinct social trajectories wherein the kingdom of God comes to mean something quite different in each case but that nevertheless they demonstrate a similarity in theoretical effect where the language contributes to the emergence of relatively distinct social formations.
Humphries establishes the Q and Markan versions of the Beelzebul controversy as relatively sophisticated compositions that are formally identified as elaborate chreiai (a literary form used in the teaching of rhetoric at the secondary and post-secondary level of GrecoRoman education) and that offer an excellent example of the rhetorical manipulation of language in the development of social and cultural identity.
Robert Knapp reveals why some ordinary people in Judea and in the Roman and Greek worlds embraced a new approach to the supernatural in their daily lives. In a time of prophets, miracles, and magic, Jesus convinced people to change their beliefs by showing his connection to god-like power and solidifying his credentials through the Resurrection.
A Financial Times, Sunday Times, and Telegraph Best Science Book of the Year
What is life? For generations, scientists have struggled to make sense of this fundamental question, for life really does look like magic: even a humble bacterium accomplishes things so dazzling that no human engineer can match it. Huge advances in molecular biology over the past few decades have served only to deepen the mystery.
In this penetrating and wide-ranging book, world-renowned physicist and science communicator Paul Davies searches for answers in a field so new and fast-moving that it lacks a name; it is a domain where biology, computing, logic, chemistry, quantum physics, and nanotechnology intersect. At the heart of these diverse fields, Davies explains, is the concept of information: a quantity which has the power to unify biology with physics, transform technology and medicine, and force us to fundamentally reconsider what it means to be alive—even illuminating the age-old question of whether we are alone in the universe.
From life’s murky origins to the microscopic engines that run the cells of our bodies, The Demon in the Machine journeys across an astounding landscape of cutting-edge science. Weaving together cancer and consciousness, two-headed worms and bird navigation, Davies reveals how biological organisms garner and process information to conjure order out of chaos, opening a window onto the secret of life itself.
In this major theoretical and methodological statement on the history of religions, Jonathan Z. Smith shows how convert apologetic agendas can dictate the course of comparative religious studies. As his example, Smith reviews four centuries of scholarship comparing early Christianities with religions of late Antiquity (especially the so-called mystery cults) and shows how this scholarship has been based upon an underlying Protestant-Catholic polemic. The result is a devastating critique of traditional New Testament scholarship, a redescription of early Christianities as religious traditions amenable to comparison, and a milestone in Smith's controversial approach to comparative religious studies.
"An important book, and certainly one of the most significant in the career of Jonathan Z. Smith, whom one may venture to call the greatest pathologist in the history of religions. As in many precedent cases, Smith follows a standard procedure: he carefully selects his victim, and then dissects with artistic finesse and unequaled acumen. The operation is always necessary, and a deconstructor of Smith's caliber is hard to find."—Ioan P. Coulianu, Journal of Religion
Edgar Allan Poe - American Writers 89 was first published in 1970. Minnesota Archive Editions uses digital technology to make long-unavailable books once again accessible, and are published unaltered from the original University of Minnesota Press editions.
How did life emerge on Earth? Is there life on other worlds? These questions, until recently confined to the pages of speculative essays and tabloid headlines, are now the subject of legitimate scientific research. This book presents a unique perspective--a combined historical, scientific, and philosophical anaylsis, which does justice to the complex nature of the subject. The book's first part offers an overview of the main ideas on the origin of life as they developed from antiquity until the twentieth century. The second, more detailed part of the book examines contemporary theories and major debates within the origin-of-life scientific community.
Aristotle and the Greek atomists' conceptions of the organism
Alexander Oparin and J.B.S. Haldane's 1920s breakthrough papers
"Essential reading for people in disciplines ranging from philosophy to biology. It is simply the best general book that I know on the question of the origin of life."
--Michael Ruse, author of Mystery of Mysteries: Is Evolution a Social Construction?
"Fry has fashioned a masterful account of the history, philosophy, and science of the origin of life and the possibility of extraterrestrial life. Her story weaves profound Western ideas of who we are and where we came from, from Aristotle to Gould, from Kant to NASA."
--Woodruff Sullivan, University of Washington
"A rich source for the specialist and thought-provoking reading for the lay person."
--Gunter Wachtershauser, University of Regensburg, Germany
How did life emerge on Earth? Is there life on other worlds? These questions, until recently confined to the pages of speculative essays and tabloid headlines, are now the subject of legitimate scientific research. This book presents a unique perspective--a combined historical, scientific, and philosophical anaylsis, which does justice to the complex nature of the subject. The book's first part offers an overview of the main ideas on the origin of life as they developed from antiquity until the twentieth century. The second, more detailed part of the book examines contemporary theories and major debates within the origin-of-life scientific community.
- Aristotle and the Greek atomists' conceptions of the organism
- Alexander Oparin and J.B.S. Haldane's 1920s breakthrough papers
- Possible life on Mars?
"J.J. was born for music," Jean-Jacques Rousseau wrote of himself, "not to be consumed in its execution, but to speed its progress and make discoveries about it. His ideas on the art and about the art are fertile, inexhaustible." Rousseau was a practicing musician and theorist for years before publication of his first Discourse, but until now scholars have neglected these ideas. This graceful translation remedies both those failings by bringing together the Essay, which John T. Scott says "most clearly displays the juncture between Rousseau's musical theory and his major philosophical works," with a comprehensive selection of the musical writings. Many of the latter are responses to authors like Rameau, Grimm, and Raynal, and a unique feature of this edition is the inclusion of writings by these authors to help establish the historical and ideological contexts of Rousseau's writings and the intellectual exchanges of which they are a part. With an introduction that provides historical background, traces the development of Rousseau's musical theory, and shows that these writings are not an isolated part of his oeuvre but instead are animated by the same "system," this volume fashions a much-needed portal through which literary scholars, musicologists, historians, and political theorists can enter into an important but hitherto overlooked chamber of Rousseau's vast intellectual palace.
Cognitive science of religion is a radically new paradigm in the study of religion. Historians of religion have shown increasing interest in this approach. The book is in four parts: an introduction to cognitive and social-scientific approaches, applications of cognitive science, applications of conceptual blending theory, and applications of socio-cognitive analyses.
Paperback format of an essential Brill resource
Essays that combine cognitive analysis with historical and social-scientific approaches to biblical materials, Christian origins, and early Judaism
Research for historians of religion, biblical scholars, and those working in the cognitive science of religion.
Two of the world’s leading scholars of the Aztec language and culture have translated Sahagún’s monumental and encyclopedic study of native life in Mexico at the time of the Spanish Conquest. This immense undertaking is the first complete translation into any language of Sahagún’s Nahuatl text, and represents one of the most distinguished contributions in the fields of anthropology, ethnography, and linguistics.
Written between 1540 and 1585, the Florentine Codex (so named because the manuscript has been part of the Laurentian Library’s collections since at least 1791) is the most authoritative statement we have of the Aztecs’ lifeways and traditions—a rich and intimate yet panoramic view of a doomed people.
The Florentine Codex is divided by subject area into twelve books and includes over 2,000 illustrations drawn by Nahua artists in the sixteenth century.
Book Three describes in detail the excitingand sometimes bloody—origin stories of Uitzilopochtli, Titlacauan, and Quetzalcoatl. The appendix discusses other significant religious aspects of the Aztec religion, such as how boys are raised to be high priests and what happens to Aztecs after death.
The "free love" Oneida Community, founded in New York state during the turbulent decades before the Civil War, practiced an extraordinary system of "complex marriage" as part of its sustained experiment in creating the kingdom of heaven on earth. For more than thirty years, two hundred adult members considered themselves heterosexually married to the entire community rather than to a single monogamous partner.
Free Love in Utopia provides the first in-depth account of how complex marriage was introduced among previously monogamous or single Oneida Community members. Bringing together vivid, firsthand writings by members of the community--including personal correspondence, memoranda on spiritual and material concerns, and official pronouncements--this volume portrays daily life in Oneida and the deep religious commitment that permeated every aspect of it. It also presents a complex portrait of the community's founder, John Humphrey Noyes, who demanded not only complete religious loyalty from his followers but also minute control over their sexual lives. It recounts the formidable legal suits faced by the community--one of which almost forced it to disband in 1852--and the critical behind-the-scenes work of Noyes's second-in-command, John L. Miller. Most important, Free Love in Utopia describes in detail how Oneida's "enlarged family" was created and how its unorthodox practices affected its members.
Key selections from a large collection of primary documents detailing Oneida's early years were compiled by George Wallingford Noyes, nephew of the founder. The present volume, astutely edited and introduced by noted communitarian scholar Lawrence Foster, marks the first publication of G. W. Noyes's remarkable manuscript, excerpted from the irreplaceable original documents that were deliberately burned after his death. The volume also reproduces Oneida's First Annual Report, which contains the sexual manifesto that underlay the community.
Winner of the Don D. and Catherine S. Fowler Prize.
Eastern North America is one of only a handful of places in the world where people first discovered how to domesticate plants. In this book, anthropologist Shane Miller uses two common, although unconventional, sources of archaeological data—stone tools and the distribution of archaeological sites—to trace subsistence decisions from the initial colonization of the American Southeast at the end of the last Ice Age to the appearance of indigenous domesticated plants roughly 5,000 years ago.
Miller argues that the origins of plant domestication lie within the context of a boom/bust cycle that culminated in the mid-Holocene, when hunter-gatherers were able to intensively exploit shellfish, deer, oak, and hickory. After this resource “boom” ended, some groups shifted to other plants in place of oak and hickory, which included the suite of plants that were later domesticated. Accompanying these subsistence trends is evidence for increasing population pressure and declining returns from hunting. Miller contends, however, that the appearance of domesticated plants in eastern North America, rather than simply being an example of necessity as the mother of invention, is the result of individuals adjusting to periods of both abundance and shortfall driven by climate change.
Despite the momentous social and economic change of recent decades, patterns of social stratification have proven to be remarkably stable. In From Origin to Destination, an expert team analyzes the current state of social stratification research from a comparative, international perspective. This volume presents theoretical knowledge as well as empirical evidence on questions such as intergenerational social mobility; inequalities of educational opportunity, gender and ethnicity; and the role of education in the labor market.
The Athapaskan departure from the Canadian Subarctic centuries ago and their subsequent arrival in the American Southwest has remained the subject of continuous debate in anthropological research. This book examines archaeological, genetic, linguistic, and traditional oral history data and brings them together in fresh ways, in many cases for the first time. With a backdrop of these new and interrelated lines of evidence, each subfield must now reevaluate its approach and the forms of evidence it uses to construct arguments.
The contributors here include the most knowledgeable scholars in each of the above fields, collectively providing the most up-to-date research on early Athapaskans and their movements and migrations. Each chapter approaches Athapaskan migration with data obtained from different regions, providing clarity as to the basis for individual arguments. Often, entrenched regional visualizations and localized conventions are clarified only when placed in juxtaposition to those of other regions. Because of this, conclusions rest on sometimes widely divergent theoretical and methodological underpinnings, thus expressing preference for and conveying weight to certain types of evidence and lines of reasoning. The goal of this volume is to expose these arguments in order to clarify appropriate directions for future research, making advances possible.
How did life begin? Why are we here? These are some of the most profound questions we can ask.
For almost a century, a small band of eccentric scientists has struggled to answer these questions and explain one of the greatest mysteries of all: how and why life began on Earth. There are many different proposals, and each idea has attracted passionate believers who promote it with an almost religious fervor, as well as detractors who reject it with equal passion.
But the quest to unravel life’s genesis is not just a story of big ideas. It is also a compelling human story, rich in personalities, conflicts, and surprising twists and turns. Along the way the journey takes in some of the greatest discoveries in modern biology, from evolution and cells to DNA and life’s family tree. It is also a search whose end may finally be in sight.
In The Genesis Quest, Michael Marshall shows how the quest to understand life’s beginning is also a journey to discover the true nature of life, and by extension our place in the universe.
The History of the American Indians
James Adair; edited, introduced, and annotated by Kathryn E. Holland Braund University of Alabama Press, 2009 Library of Congress E78.S65A65 2005 | Dewey Decimal 973.25
A fully annotated edition of a classic work detailing the cultures of five southeastern American Indian tribes during the Contact Period.
James Adair was an Englishman who lived and traded among the southeastern Indians for more than 30 years, from 1735 to 1768. During that time he covered the territory from the Appalachian Mountains to the Mississippi River. He encountered and lived among Indians, advised governors, spent time with settlers, and worked tirelessly for the expansion of British interests against the French and the Spanish. Adair's acceptance by the Creeks, Choctaws, Cherokees, and Chickasaws provided him the opportunity to record, compare, and analyze their cultures and traditions.
Adair's written work, first published in England in 1775, is considered one of the finest histories of the Native Americans. His observations provide one of the earliest and what many modern scholars regard as the best account of southeastern Indian cultures. This edition adheres to current standards of literary editing, following the original closely, and provides fully annotated and indexed critical apparatus.
The origin of life is a hotly debated topic. The Christian Bible states that God created the heavens and the Earth, all in about seven days roughly six thousand years ago. This episode in Genesis departs markedly from scientific theories developed over the last two centuries which hold that life appeared on Earth about 3.5 billion years ago in the form of bacteria, followed by unicellular organisms half a millennia later. It is this version of genesis that Alexandre Meinesz explores in this engaging tale of life's origins and evolution.
How Life Began elucidates three origins, or geneses, of life—bacteria, nucleated cells, and multicellular organisms—and shows how evolution has sculpted life to its current biodiversity through four main events—mutation, recombination, natural selection, and geologic cataclysm. As an ecologist who specializes in algae, the first organisms to colonize Earth, Meinesz brings a refreshingly novel voice to the history of biodiversity and emphasizes here the role of unions in organizing life. For example, the ingestion of some bacteria by other bacteria led to mitochondria that characterize animal and plant cells, and the chloroplasts of plant cells.
As Meinesz charmingly recounts, life’s grandeur is a result of an evolutionary tendency toward sociality and solidarity. He suggests that it is our cohesion and collaboration that allows us to solve the environmental problems arising in the decades and centuries to come. Rooted in the science of evolution but enlivened with many illustrations from other disciplines and the arts, How Life Began intertwines the rise of bacteria and multicellular life with Vermeer’s portrait of Antoni van Leeuwenhoek, the story of Genesis and Noah, Meinesz’s son’s early experiences with Legos, and his own encounters with other scientists. All of this brings a very human and humanistic tone to Meinesz’s charismatic narrative of the three origins of life.
From his groundbreaking Violence and the Sacred and Things Hidden since the Foundation of the World, René Girard’s mimetic theory is presented as elucidating “the origins of culture.” He posits that archaic religion (or “the sacred”), particularly in its dynamics of sacrifice and ritual, is a neglected and major key to unlocking the enigma of “how we became human.” French philosopher of science Michel Serres states that Girard’s theory provides a Darwinian theory of culture because it “proposes a dynamic, shows an evolution and gives a universal explanation.” This major claim has, however, remained underscrutinized by scholars working on Girard’s theory, and it is mostly overlooked within the natural and social sciences. Joining disciplinary worlds, this book aims to explore this ambitious claim, invoking viewpoints as diverse as evolutionary culture theory, cultural anthropology, archaeology, cognitive psychology, ethology, and philosophy. The contributors provide major evidence in favor of Girard’s hypothesis. Equally, Girard’s theory is presented as having the potential to become for the human and social sciences something akin to the integrating framework that present-day biological science owes to Darwin—something compatible with it and complementary to it in accounting for the still remarkably little understood phenomenon of human emergence.
Since its publication in 1989, The Human Career has proved to be an indispensable tool in teaching human origins. This substantially revised third edition retains Richard G. Klein’s innovative approach while showing how cumulative discoveries and analyses over the past ten years have significantly refined our knowledge of human evolution.
Klein chronicles the evolution of people from the earliest primates through the emergence of fully modern humans within the past 200,000 years. His comprehensive treatment stresses recent advances in knowledge, including, for example, ever more abundant evidence that fully modern humans originated in Africa and spread from there, replacing the Neanderthals in Europe and equally archaic people in Asia. With its coverage of both the fossil record and the archaeological record over the 2.5 million years for which both are available, The Human Career demonstrates that human morphology and behavior evolved together. Throughout the book, Klein presents evidence for alternative points of view, but does not hesitate to make his own position clear.
In addition to outlining the broad pattern of human evolution, The Human Career details the kinds of data that support it. For the third edition, Klein has added numerous tables and a fresh citation system designed to enhance readability, especially for students. He has also included more than fifty new illustrations to help lay readers grasp the fossils, artifacts, and other discoveries on which specialists rely. With abundant references and hundreds of images, charts, and diagrams, this new edition is unparalleled in its usefulness for teaching human evolution.
Humans domesticated dogs soon after Neanderthals began to disappear. This alliance between two predator species, Pat Shipman hypothesizes, made possible unprecedented success in hunting large Ice Age mammals—a distinct and ultimately decisive advantage for human invaders at a time when climate change made both humans and Neanderthals vulnerable.
By unlocking the evolutionary information contained in cells, biologists have been able to construct the Tree of Life and show that its three main stems are dominated by microbes. Plants and animals constitute a small upper branch in one stem. Soon we may know how life began over 3.5 billion years ago. John Ingraham tells this story of discovery.
Landscape is a powerful factor in the operation of memory because of the associations narrators make between the local landscape and the events of the stories they tell. Ancestors and mythological events often become fixed in a specific landscape and act as timeless reference points.
In conventional anthropological literature, "landscape" is the term applied to the meaning local people bestow on their cultural and physical surroundings. In this work, the authors explore the cultural and physical landscapes an individual or cultural group has constructed to define the origins or beginnings of that cultural group as revealed through shared or traditional memory. The cultural landscapes of origins in diverse sites throughout the Americas are investigated through multidisciplinary research, not only to reveal the belief system and mythologies but also to place these origin beliefs in context and relationship to each other. In a continual interaction between the past, present, and future, time is subordinate to place, and history, as defined in Western academic terms, does not exist.
Language and Species
Derek Bickerton University of Chicago Press, 1990 Library of Congress P116.B52 1990 | Dewey Decimal 401
Language and Species presents the most detailed and well-documented scenario to date of the origins of language. Drawing on "living linguistic fossils" such as "ape talk," the "two-word" stage of small children, and pidgin languages, and on recent discoveries in paleoanthropology, Bickerton shows how a primitive "protolanguage" could have offered Homo erectus a novel ecological niche. He goes on to demonstrate how this protolanguage could have developed into the languages we speak today.
"You are drawn into [Bickerton's] appreciation of the dominant role language plays not only in what we say, but in what we think and, therefore, what we are."—Robert Wright, New York Times Book Review
"The evolution of language is a fascinating topic, and Bickerton's Language and Species is the best introduction we have."—John C. Marshall, Nature
The origins of baseball are controversial. James A. Vlasich discusses the debates between two men intimately involved in nineteenth-century baseball, Henry Chadwick and Albert G. Spalding. Abner Graves of the Mills Commission claimed that Abner Doubleday had invented the game and he had done it in Cooperstown, New York. This claim was scrutinized at the time but the myth became etched into baseball history.
Through the years, however, some critics have questioned the Mills Commission report. The problem is that the Baseball Hall of Fame is built on this shaky foundation. The lack of diligence on the part of Spalding’s self-appointed committee has led to a credibility gap for the baseball shrine that continues a half century after its dedication. Indeed, the story of the building of the Baseball Hall of Fame is filled with intrigue worthy of a political thriller.
All humans share three origins: the beginning of our individual lives, the appearance of life on Earth, and the formation of our planetary home. Wallace Arthur combines embryological, evolutionary, and cosmological perspectives to tell the story of life on Earth and its potential to exist elsewhere in the universe.
Once considered a period of decline, Late Antiquity (third through eighth centuries C.E.) is now seen as a creative period of transition between the ancient and medieval worlds. Ostensibly an "otherworldly" religion, Christianity became a powerful worldly cultural force. But this power was shaped and severely limited by a large number of factors, including its own highly diverse traditions, scriptures, practices, and theologies.
William Klingshirn and Mark Vessey have assembled some of the most influential scholars in the study of Late Antiquity to test the limits of Christianity. The sixteen essays in this collection investigate the ways in which the concept of "limits" (temporal, spatial, ideological, social, and cultural) can help us to understand the texture of Christianity during this formative period. Taken together, the essays in this volume constitute as yet the most sustained study of cultural transformations evoked by Robert Markus's phrase "the end of ancient Christianity."
This timely volume will interest students of early Christian history and theology, as well as historians of the Roman empire and early middle ages. Because it examines a formative period of western civilization, it will also speak to anyone who wonders why Christianity takes the form it does today.
Contributors include Gerald Bonner, Peter Brown, Virginia Burrus, John Cavadini, Elizabeth Clark, Paula Fredriksen, Sidney Griffith, David Hunter, Conrad Leyser, Paul Meyvaert, Oliver Nicholson, James O'Donnell, Philip Rousseau, Frederick Russell, Carole Straw, and Robert Wilken.
William E. Klingshirn is Associate Professor of Greek and Latin, The Catholic University of America. Mark Vessey is Associate Professor of English, University of British Columbia.
If we are to understand the specifically modern function of self-consciousness, we must first look to the origins of the concept. Among the key thinkers who elaborated on self-consciousness was the German monk and theologian Martin Luther. Reiner Schuermann’s writings and lectures on Luther therefore offer an innovative reading of the systematic role of self-consciousness in both premodern and modern cultures.
This volume in a planned twenty-nine-part series, Reiner Schuermann: Luther. The Origin of Modern Self-Consciousness sees Schuermann tracing Luther’s conception of the rise of self-consciousness as the subjective reference point. Schuermann then explores this conception in conversation with both the Cartesian cogito and Kantian apperception.
In February of 1971, in the Laotian village of Nam Chia, a forty-one year old farmer named Shong Lue Yang was assassinated by government soldiers. Shong Lue claimed to have been descended of God and given the mission of delivering the first true Hmong alphabet. Many believed him to be the Hmong people's long-awaited messiah, and his thousands of followers knew him as "Mother (Source) of Writing."
An anthropological linguist who has worked among the Hmong, William A. Smalley joins Shong Lue's chief disciple, Chia Koua Vang, and one of his associates, to tell the fascinating story of how the previously unschooled farmer developed his remarkable writing system through four stages of increasing sophistication. The uniqueness of Shong Lue's achievement is highlighted by a comparison of Shong Lue's writing system to other known Hmong systems and to the history of writing as a whole.
In addition to a nontechnical linguistic analysis of the script and a survey of its current use, Mother of Writing provides an intriguing cultural account of Shong Lue's life. The book traces the twenty-year-long struggle to disseminate the script after Shong Lue's death, first by handwriting, then by primitive moveable type, an abortive attempt to design a wooden typewriter, and finally by modern wordprocessing. In a moving concluding chapter, Smalley discusses his own complex feelings about his coauthors' story.
The origins of Islam have been the subject of increasing controversy in recent years. The traditional view, which presents Islam as a self-consciously distinct religion tied to the life and revelations of the prophet Muhammad in western Arabia, has since the 1970s been challenged by historians engaged in critical study of the Muslim sources. In Muhammad and the Believers, the eminent historian Fred Donner offers a lucid and original vision of how Islam first evolved.
Humans are a striking anomaly in the natural world. While we are similar to other mammals in many ways, our behavior sets us apart. Our unparalleled ability to adapt has allowed us to occupy virtually every habitat on earth using an incredible variety of tools and subsistence techniques. Our societies are larger, more complex, and more cooperative than any other mammal's. In this stunning exploration of human adaptation, Peter J. Richerson and Robert Boyd argue that only a Darwinian theory of cultural evolution can explain these unique characteristics.
Not by Genes Alone offers a radical interpretation of human evolution, arguing that our ecological dominance and our singular social systems stem from a psychology uniquely adapted to create complex culture. Richerson and Boyd illustrate here that culture is neither superorganic nor the handmaiden of the genes. Rather, it is essential to human adaptation, as much a part of human biology as bipedal locomotion. Drawing on work in the fields of anthropology, political science, sociology, and economics—and building their case with such fascinating examples as kayaks, corporations, clever knots, and yams that require twelve men to carry them—Richerson and Boyd convincingly demonstrate that culture and biology are inextricably linked, and they show us how to think about their interaction in a way that yields a richer understanding of human nature.
In abandoning the nature-versus-nurture debate as fundamentally misconceived, Not by Genes Alone is a truly original and groundbreaking theory of the role of culture in evolution and a book to be reckoned with for generations to come.
“I continue to be surprised by the number of educated people (many of them biologists) who think that offering explanations for human behavior in terms of culture somehow disproves the suggestion that human behavior can be explained in Darwinian evolutionary terms. Fortunately, we now have a book to which they may be directed for enlightenment . . . . It is a book full of good sense and the kinds of intellectual rigor and clarity of writing that we have come to expect from the Boyd/Richerson stable.”—Robin Dunbar, Nature
“Not by Genes Alone is a valuable and very readable synthesis of a still embryonic but very important subject straddling the sciences and humanities.”—E. O. Wilson, Harvard University
On the Origin of Language
Jean-Jacques Rousseau and Johann Gottfried Herder University of Chicago Press, 1986 Library of Congress P116.O5 1986 | Dewey Decimal 401
This volume combines Rousseau's essay on the origin of diverse languages with Herder's essay on the genesis of the faculty of speech. Rousseau's essay is important to semiotics and critical theory, as it plays a central role in Jacques Derrida's book Of Grammatology, and both essays are valuable historical and philosophical documents.
On the Origin of Phyla
James W. Valentine University of Chicago Press, 2004 Library of Congress QH367.5.V26 2004 | Dewey Decimal 591.38
Owing its inspiration and title to On the Origin of Species, James W. Valentine's ambitious book synthesizes and applies the vast treasury of theory and research collected in the century and a half since Darwin's time. By investigating the origins of life's diversity, Valentine unlocks the mystery of the origin of phyla.
One of the twentieth century's most distinguished paleobiologists, Valentine here integrates data from molecular genetics, evolutionary developmental biology, embryology, comparative morphology, and paleontology into an analysis of interest to scholars from any of these fields. He begins by examining the sorts of evidence that can be gleaned from fossils, molecules, and morphology, then reviews and compares the basic morphology and development of animal phyla, emphasizing the important design elements found in the bodyplans of both living and extinct phyla. Finally, Valentine undertakes the monumental task of developing models to explain the origin and early diversification of animal phyla, as well as their later evolutionary patterns.
Truly a magnum opus, On the Origin of Phyla will take its place as one of the classic scientific texts of the twentieth century, affecting the work of paleontologists, morphologists, and developmental, molecular, and evolutionary biologists for decades to come.
"A magisterial compendium . . . . Valentine offers a judicious evaluation of an astonishing array of evidence."—Richard Fortey, New Scientist
"Truly a magnum opus, On the Origin of Phyla has already taken its place as one of the classic scientific texts of the twentieth century, affecting the work of paleontologists, morphologists, and developmental, molecular, and evolutionary biologists for decades to come."—Ethology, Ecology & Evolution
"Valentine is one of the Renaissance minds of our time. . . . Darwin wisely called his best-known work On the Origin of the Species; the origin of the phyla is an even stickier problem, and Valentine deserves credit for tackling it at such breadth . . . . A magnificient book."—Stefan Bengtson, Nature
This, the most interesting and helpful edition of Charles Darwin's major work, is now available in an inexpensive paperback edition. It is written with a clarity, forcefulness, and conciseness not found in any subsequent revision. For modern reading and for reference, it is the standard edition.
Brian Boyd explains why we tell stories and how our minds are shaped to understand them. After considering art as adaptation, Boyd examines Homer's Odyssey and Dr. Seuss's Horton Hears a Who! demonstrating how an evolutionary lens can offer new understanding and appreciation of specific works. Published for the bicentenary of Darwin's birth and the 150th anniversary of the publication of Origin of Species, Boyd's study embraces a Darwinian view of human nature and art, and offers a credo for a new humanism.
Most readers think that superheroes began with Superman’s appearance in Action Comics No. 1, but that Kryptonian rocket didn’t just drop out of the sky. By the time Superman’s creators were born, the superhero’s most defining elements—secret identities, aliases, disguises, signature symbols, traumatic origin stories, extraordinary powers, self-sacrificing altruism—were already well-rehearsed standards. Superheroes have a sprawling, action-packed history that predates the Man of Steel by decades and even centuries. On the Origin of Superheroes is a quirky, personal tour of the mythology, literature, philosophy, history, and grand swirl of ideas that have permeated western culture in the centuries leading up to the first appearance of superheroes (as we know them today) in 1938.
From the creation of the universe, through mythological heroes and gods, to folklore, ancient philosophy, revolutionary manifestos, discarded scientific theories, and gothic monsters, the sweep and scale of the superhero’s origin story is truly epic. We will travel from Jane Austen’s Bath to Edgar Rice Burroughs’s Mars to Owen Wister’s Wyoming, with some surprising stops along the way. We’ll meet mad scientists, Napoleonic dictators, costumed murderers, diabolical madmen, blackmailers, pirates, Wild West outlaws, eugenicists, the KKK, Victorian do-gooders, detectives, aliens, vampires, and pulp vigilantes (to name just a few). Chris Gavaler is your tour guide through this fascinating, sometimes dark, often funny, but always surprising prehistory of the most popular figure in pop culture today. In a way, superheroes have always been with us: they are a fossil record of our greatest aspirations and our worst fears and failings.
"This is a pioneering study and represents a major undertaking. . . . Stieg succeeds in making intelligible the diffuse and highly diversified nature of the historical periodical. At minimum, this title should be required reading of all history graduate students in methodology courses. Many senior historians would also benefit from a review of its contents. . . . Information and library science students specializing in scholarly communication should digest the entire study." —Journal of Education for Library and Information Science
Although the age and origin of katsina ceremonialism have long fascinated scholars, the reasons for its development have remained unexplored until now. E. Charles Adams here examines the concept of the katsina and the religion that developed around it, focusing on what makes katsinas unique, why the concept was developed, and what adaptive value it had for prehistoric Pueblo culture.
Starting with the Roman army’s first foray beyond its borders and ending with Hadrian’s death (138 CE), David Potter’s panorama of the early Empire recounts the wars, leaders and social transformations that lay the foundations of imperial success. As today’s parallels reveal, the Romans have much to teach us about power, governance and leadership.
In the grand sweep of evolution, the origin of radically new kinds of organisms in the fossil record is the result of a relatively simple process: natural selection marching through the ages. Or is it? Does Darwinian evolution acting over a sufficiently long period of time really offer a complete explanation, or are unusual genetic events and particular environmental and ecological circumstances also involved? With The Origin of Higher Taxa, Tom Kemp sifts through the layers of paleobiological, genetic, and ecological evidence on a quest to answer this essential, game-changing question of biology.
Looking beyond the microevolutionary force of Darwinian natural selection, Kemp enters the realm of macroevolution, or evolution above the species level. From the origin of mammals to the radiation of flowering plants, these large-scale patterns—such as the rise of novel organismal design, adaptive radiations, and lineage extinctions—encompass the most significant trends and transformations in evolution. As macroevolution cannot be studied by direct observation and experiment, scientists have to rely on the outcome of evolution as evidence for the processes at work, in the form of patterns of species appearances and extinctions in a spotty fossil record, and through the nature of species extant today. Marshalling a wealth of new fossil and molecular evidence and increasingly sophisticated techniques for their study, Kemp here offers a timely and original reinterpretation of how higher taxa such as arthropods, mollusks, mammals, birds, and whales evolved—a bold new take on the history of life.
What is race and why does it matter? Why does the presence of Others make us so afraid? America’s foremost novelist reflects on themes that preoccupy her work and dominate politics: race, fear, borders, mass movement of peoples, desire for belonging. Ta-Nehisi Coates provides a foreword to Toni Morrison’s most personal work of nonfiction to date.
"The Origin of Table Manners is the third volume of a tetralogy devoted to American Indian mythology. Unlike the first two volumes (The Raw and the Cooked, From Honey to Ashes), which are devoted to South American myths, the present one establishes relations with North America, which is the subject of the fourth (The Naked Man). . . . In the course of the analysis, the myths link up with ideas of more general interest. Thus, we find discussions of numeration, of morals, and of the origin of the novel. . . . The Origin of Table Manners is thus of special interest to students of American Indian mythology, although it contains ideas of interest to other fields and even to the general reader."—Daniel C. Raffalovich, American Anthropologist
"An immense anthropological erudition is here wielded by one of the world's finest minds, and the myths themselves have never been taken more seriously. . . . [Lévi-Strauss] raises issues and then resolves them with the suspenseful cunning of a mystery novelist."—John Updike, New Yorker
Origin of the Earth and Moon
Edited by R. M. Canup and K. Righter University of Arizona Press, 2000 Library of Congress QB632.O76 2000 | Dewey Decimal 525
The age-old question of how our home planet and its satellite originated has in recent times undergone a minor revolution. The emergence of the "giant impact theory" as the most successful model for the origin of the Moon has been difficult to reconcile with some aspects of the Earth, and the development of an integrated model for the origin of the Earth-Moon system has been difficult for this reason. However, recent technical advances in experimental and isotopic work, together with intensified interest in the modeling of planetary dynamics, have produced a wealth of new results requiring a rethinking of models for the origin of the Earth and Moon.
This book is intended to serve as a resource for those scientists working closely in this field, while at the same time it provides enough balance and depth to offer an introduction for students or technically minded general readers. Its thirty chapters address isotopic and chemical constraints on accretion, the dynamics of terrestrial planet formation, the impact-triggered formation of the Earth-Moon system, differentiation of the Earth and Moon, the origin of terrestrial volatiles, and conditions on the young Earth and Moon.
Covering such subjects as the history and origin of the Moon's orbit, water on the Earth, and the implications of Earth-Moon interactions for terrestrial climate and life, the book constitutes a state-of-the-art overview of the most recent investigations in the field. Although many advances have been made in our ability to evaluate competing models of the formation of the Earth-Moon system, there are still many gaps in our understanding. This book makes great strides toward closing those gaps by highlighting the extensive progress that has been made and pointing toward future research.
From Scouts to Balloon-busters, the Emergence of Air-to-Air Combat in World War I
When World War I began in August 1914, the airplane had already proven its worth as an intelligence gathering “eye-in-the-sky.” These scouting aircraft soon became indispensable to armies on both sides, and the attempt to drive enemy planes away began in earnest. Local air superiority was incorporated into battlefield strategy, and the use of aircraft to conduct offensive operations would change warfare as dramatically as the first firearms 300 years before. By the end of 1915, the basic formula of the armed scout settled on a single-seater with a machine gun synchronized to fire through its propeller blades. This heavily armed aircraft became the first true fighter plane whose primary function was to destroy enemy aircraft, whether scouts, balloons, bombers, or other fighters. A new glamorized “knight of the air” was born: the ace, a fighter pilot who brought down five or more opponents. From 1916 on, as the combatants relied on airplanes more, flying tactics and strategy—including mass formations—were developed for what would become a deadly struggle for complete air superiority. By 1918, the final year of the war, air battles could be as sprawling as those on the ground.
In The Origin of the Fighter Aircraft, historian Jon Guttman tells the engrossing story of how one of the most amazing inventions became a integral component of warfare. Balancing technical description, personalities, and battle accounts, the author demonstrates that by the end of World War I most of the fundamentals for modern aerial combat had been established.
Focusing on the 17th-century play of mourning, Walter Benjamin identifies allegory as the constitutive trope of modernity, bespeaking a haunted, bedeviled world of mutability and eternal transience. In this rigorous elegant translation, history as trauerspiel is the condition as well as subject of modern allegory in its inscription of the abyssal.
The Origin of the World is a revealing, intimate, and ultimately liberating study of female sexuality at its heart: the vagina. Working from the assumption that sex is pleasurable and fulfilling insofar as its participants fully understand how it works, sexologist Jelto Drenth gives readers a guided tour of the complex, challenging, and often misunderstood "origin of the world."
Drenth describes the workings of the vagina in simple language, enriching his description throughout the book with the imagery, mythology, lore, and history that has surrounded the vagina since the Middle Ages. The Origin of the World moves from basic physiognomic facts to the realms of anthropology, art history, science fiction, and feminist literature-all in the service of mapping the dark continent. Drenth's journey takes him from Renaissance woodcuts to vibrators, clitoridectomies to "virginity checks," fears of the vagina (the vagina dentata) to its celebration. Part medical exposition covering the function of female genitalia from orgasm to pregnancy and part cultural history discussing contemporary and historical views of such aspects of the feminine as pubic hair, Freud's theories of coitus, and slang terms for the vagina, The Origin of the World is encyclopedic in its breadth, fascinating in its content, and familiar in its subject.
This lightly written exploration can be seen as both an owner's manual and a guide for the perplexed. Women and men alike will benefit from its entertaining erudition and from its fundamental mission of demystifying sex and sexuality in the service of greater understanding and, from that understanding, greater pleasure.
“Drenth’s tale is mostly more cheerful than cautionary, with fascinating accounts of the physiology of vaginal response, thoughtful readings of literature, films, and works of art, and a surprising range of trivia. The erudite book displays a brisk and slightly demented sense of humor.”—Village Voice
The eight case studies in this book -- each a synthesis of available knowledge about the origins of agriculture in a specific region of the globe -- enable scholars in diverse disciplines to examine humanity's transition to agricultural societies. Contributors include: Gary W. Crawford, Robin W. Dennell, and JackR. Harlan.
Combining older findings with new data on 1,000 previously undescribed archaeological sites, Origins of the Ñuu presents the cultural evolution of the Mixteca Alta in an up-to-date chronological framework.
The ñuu - the kingdoms of the famous Mixtec codices - are traced back through the Postclassic and Classic periods to their beginnings in the first states of the Terminal Formative, revealing their origin, evolution, and persistence through two cycles of growth and collapse. Challenging assumptions that the Mixtec were peripheral to better-known peoples such as the Aztecs or Maya, the book asserts that the ñuu were a major demographic and economic power in their own right.
Older explanations of multiregional or macroregional systems often portrayed civilizations as rising in a cradle or hearth and spreading outward. New macroregional studies show that civilizations are products of more complex interactions between regions, in which peripheries are not simply shaped by cores but by their interactions with multiple societies at varying distances from major centers. Origins of the Ñuu is a significant contribution to this emerging area of archaeological research.
"Endlessly absorbing and informative. It would be hard to imagine a better introduction to this most important and fascinating field.”—Bill Bryson, author of A Short History of Nearly Everything
Paleontology: A Brief History of Life is the fifth title published in the Templeton Science and Religion Series, in which scientists from a wide range of fields distill their experience and knowledge into brief tours of their respective specialties.
In this volume, Ian Tattersall, a highly esteemed figure in the fields of anthropology, archaeology, and paleontology, leads a fascinating tour of the history of life and the evolution of human beings.
Starting at the very beginning, Tattersall examines patterns of change in the biosphere over time, and the correlations of biological events with physical changes in the Earth’s environment. He introduces the complex of evolutionary processes, situates human beings in the luxuriant diversity of Life (demonstrating that however remarkable we may legitimately find ourselves to be, we are the product of the same basic forces and processes that have driven the evolutionary histories of all other creatures), and he places the origin of our extraordinary spiritual sensibilities in the context of the exaptational and emergent acquisition of symbolic cognition and thought.
Concise and yet comprehensive, historically penetrating and yet up-to-date, responsibly factual and yet engaging, Paleontology serves as the perfect entrée to science's greatest story.
From their earliest encounters with Indigenous Pacific Islanders, white Europeans and Americans asserted an identification with the racial origins of Polynesians, declaring them to be racially almost white and speculating that they were of Mediterranean or Aryan descent. In Possessing Polynesians Maile Arvin analyzes this racializing history within the context of settler colonialism across Polynesia, especially in Hawai‘i. Arvin argues that a logic of possession through whiteness animates settler colonialism, by which both Polynesia (the place) and Polynesians (the people) become exotic, feminized belongings of whiteness. Seeing whiteness as indigenous to Polynesia provided white settlers with the justification needed to claim Polynesian lands and resources. Understood as possessions, Polynesians were and continue to be denied the privileges of whiteness. Yet Polynesians have long contested these classifications, claims, and cultural representations, and Arvin shows how their resistance to and refusal of white settler logic have regenerated Indigenous forms of recognition.
Protostars and Planets
Tom Gehrels University of Arizona Press, 1979 Library of Congress QB806.P77 | Dewey Decimal 521.58
Unique source book on star formation and the origin of planetary systems from some 35 distinguished authors. Topics include the formation of stars from the cloudy to the stellar to the planetary state. Special emphasis on stars believed capable of producing planets.
Protostars and Planets II
David C. Black University of Arizona Press, 1985 Library of Congress QB806.P77 1985 | Dewey Decimal 521.58
Protostars and Planets VI
Edited by Henrik Beuther, Ralf S. Klessen, Cornelis P. Dullemond, and Thomas Henning University of Arizona Press, 2014 Library of Congress QB806.P78 2014 | Dewey Decimal 523.24
The revolutionary discovery of thousands of confirmed and candidate planets beyond the solar system brings forth the most fundamental
question: How do planets and their host stars form and evolve? Protostars and Planets VI brings together more than 250 contributing authors at the forefront of their field, conveying the latest results in this research area and establishing a new foundation for advancing our understanding of stellar and planetary formation.
Continuing the tradition of the Protostars and Planets series, this latest volume uniquely integrates the cross-disciplinary aspects of this broad field. Covering an extremely wide range of scales, from the formation of large clouds in our Milky Way galaxy down to small chondrules in our solar system, Protostars and Planets VI takes an encompassing view with the goal of not only highlighting what we know but, most importantly, emphasizing the frontiers of what we do not know.
As a vehicle for propelling forward new discoveries on stars, planets, and their origins, this latest volume in the Space Science Series is an indispensable resource for both current scientists and new students in astronomy, astrophysics, planetary science, and the study of meteorites.
This volume explores the role of religion and ritual in the origin of settled life in the Middle East, focusing on the repetitive construction of houses or cult buildings in the same place. Prominent archaeologists, anthropologists, and scholars of religion working at several of the region’s most important sites—such as Çatalhöyük, Göbekli Tepe, Körtik Tepe, and Aşıklı Höyük—contend that religious factors significantly affected the timing and stability of settled economic structures.
Contributors argue that the long-term social relationships characteristic of delayed-return agricultural systems must be based on historical ties to place and to ancestors. They define different forms of history-making, including nondiscursive routinized practices as well as commemorative memorialization. They consider the timing in the Neolithic of an emerging concern with history-making in place in relation to the adoption of farming and settled life in regional sequences. They explore whether such correlations indicate the causal processes in which history-making, ritual practices, agricultural intensification, population increase, and social competition all played a role.
Religion, History, and Place in the Origin of Settled Life takes a major step forward in understanding the adoption of farming and a settled way of life in the Middle East by foregrounding the roles of history-making and religious ritual. This work is relevant to students and scholars of Near Eastern archaeology, as well as those interested in the origins of agriculture and social complexity or the social role of religion in the past.
Contributors: Kurt W. Alt, Mark R. Anspach, Marion Benz, Lee Clare, Anna Belfer-Cohen, Morris Cohen, Oliver Dietrich, Güneş Duru, Yilmaz S. Erdal, Nigel Goring-Morris, Ian Hodder, Rosemary A. Joyce, Nicola Lercari, Wendy Matthews, Jens Notroff, Vecihi Özkaya, Feridun S. Şahin, F. Leron Shults, Devrim Sönmez, Christina Tsoraki, Wesley Wildman
This book presents an insider's account of Columbia's internal conflict. At the forefront are the Revolutionary Armed Forces of Colombia-People's Army (FARC-EP).
Although they are one of the most powerful military forces in Latin American history, little is known about the FARC-EP. James J. Brittain explains where and why this political military movement came into existence and assesses whether the methods employed by the insurgency have the potential to free those marginalised in Colombia.
As democratic socialism develops in Venezuela and Bolivia, Brittain's fascinating study assesses the relevance of armed struggle to 21st century Latin American politics. This is an essential title for those wishing to develop a full understanding of the continent.
By evaluating the FARC-EP's actions, ideological construction, and their theoretical placement, the book gauges how this guerrilla movement relates to revolutionary theory and practice and through what tangible mechanisms, if any, they are creating a new Colombia.
Organized into four sections, the twelve chapters of Rivers of Change are concerned with prehistoric Native American societies in eastern North America and their transition from a hunting and gathering way of life to a reliance on food production. Written at different times over a decade, the chapters vary both in length and topical focus. They are joined together, however, by a number of shared “rivers of change.”
The topic of the origins of theatre is one of the most controversial in theatre studies, with a long history of heated discussions and strongly held positions. In The Roots of Theatre, Eli Rozik enters the debate in a feisty way, offering not just another challenge to those who place theatre’s origins in ritual and religion but also an alternative theory of roots based on the cultural and psychological conditions that made the advent of theatre possible.
Rozik grounds his study in a comprehensive review and criticism of each of the leading historical and anthropological theories. He believes that the quest for origins is essentially misleading because it does not provide any significant insight for our understanding of theatre. Instead, he argues that theatre, like music or dance, is a sui generis kind of human creativity—a form of thinking and communication whose roots lie in the spontaneous image-making faculty of the human psyche.
Rozik’s broad approach to research lies within the boundaries of structuralism and semiotics, but he also utilizes additional disciplines such as psychoanalysis, neurology, sociology, play and game theory, science of religion, mythology, poetics, philosophy of language, and linguistics. In seeking the roots of theatre, what he ultimately defines is something substantial about the nature of creative thought—a rudimentary system of imagistic thinking and communication that lies in the set of biological, primitive, and infantile phenomena such as daydreaming, imaginative play, children’s drawing, imitation, mockery (caricature, parody), storytelling, and mythmaking.
Most scholarly speculation on the origin of human language has centered around speech. However, the growing understanding of sign languages on human development has transformed the debate on language evolution. David F. Armstrong’s new book Show of Hands: A Natural History of Sign Language casts a wide net in history and geography to explain how these visible languages have enriched human culture in general and how their study has expanded knowledge of the human condition.
Armstrong addresses the major theories of language evolution, including Noam Chomsky’s thesis of an innate human “organ” for language and Steven Pinker’s contention that there is language and not-language without any gradations between gesture and language. This engrossing survey proceeds with William C. Stokoe’s revival of the early anthropological cognitive-linguistic model of gradual development through the iconicity of sign languages. Armstrong ranges far to reveal the nature of sign languages, from the anatomy of early human ancestors to telling passages by Shakespeare, Dickens, and Pound, to the astute observations of Socrates, Lucretius, and Abbé de l’Epée on sign communication among deaf people. Show of Hands illustrates the remarkable development of sign languages in isolated Bedouin communities and among Australian indigenous peoples. It also explores the ubiquitous benefits of “Deaf Gain” and visual communication as they dovetail with the Internet and its mushrooming potential for the future.
In the early 1890s the theory of evolution gained an unexpected ally: the Edison phonograph. An amateur scientist used the new machine—one of the technological wonders of the age—to record monkey calls, play them back to the monkeys, and watch their reactions. From these soon-famous experiments he judged that he had discovered “the simian tongue,” made up of words he was beginning to translate, and containing the rudiments from which human language evolved. Yet for most of the next century, the simian tongue and the means for its study existed at the scientific periphery. Both returned to great acclaim only in the early 1980s, after a team of ethologists announced that experimental playback showed certain African monkeys to have rudimentarily meaningful calls.
Drawing on newly discovered archival sources and interviews with key scientists, Gregory Radick here reconstructs the remarkable trajectory of a technique invented and reinvented to listen in on primate communication. Richly documented and powerfully argued, The Simian Tongue charts the scientific controversies over the evolution of language from Darwin’s day to our own, resurrecting the forgotten debts of psychology, anthropology, and other behavioral sciences to the Victorian debate about the animal roots of human language.
Alvar Aalto once argued that what mattered in architecture wasn’t what a building looks like on the day it opens but what it is like to live inside it thirty years later. In this book, architect and critic Robert McCarter persuasively argues that interior spatial experience is the necessary starting point for design, and the quality of that experience is the only appropriate means of evaluating a work after it has been built.
McCarter reveals that we can’t really know a piece of architecture without inhabiting its spaces, and we need to counter our contemporary obsession with exterior views and forms with a renewed appreciation for interiors. He explores how interior space has been integral to the development of modern architecture from the late 1800s to today, and he examines how architects have engaged interior space and its experiences in their design processes, fundamentally transforming traditional approaches to composition. Eloquently placing us within a host of interior spaces, he opens up new ways of thinking about architecture and what its goals are and should be.
Evolutionary science has long viewed language as, basically, a fortunate accident—a crossing of wires that happened to be extraordinarily useful, setting humans apart from other animals and onto a trajectory that would see their brains (and the products of those brains) become increasingly complex.
But as Michael C. Corballis shows in The Truth about Language, it’s time to reconsider those assumptions. Language, he argues, is not the product of some “big bang” 60,000 years ago, but rather the result of a typically slow process of evolution with roots in elements of grammatical language found much farther back in our evolutionary history. Language, Corballis explains, evolved as a way to share thoughts—and, crucially for human development, to connect our own “mental time travel,” our imagining of events and people that are not right in front of us, to that of other people. We share that ability with other animals, but it was the development of language that made it powerful: it led to our ability to imagine other perspectives, to imagine ourselves in the minds of others, a development that, by easing social interaction, proved to be an extraordinary evolutionary advantage.
Even as his thesis challenges such giants as Chomsky and Stephen Jay Gould, Corballis writes accessibly and wittily, filling his account with unforgettable anecdotes and fascinating historical examples. The result is a book that’s perfect both for deep engagement and as brilliant fodder for that lightest of all forms of language, cocktail party chatter.
We know the universe has a history, but does it also have a story of self-creation to tell? Yes, in Roy R. Gould’s account. Heoffers a compelling narrative of how the universe—with no instruction other than its own laws—evolved into billions of galaxies and gave rise to life, including humans who have been trying for millennia to comprehend it. Far from being a random accident, the universe is hard at work, extracting order from chaos.
Making use of the best current science, Gould turns what many assume to be true about the universe on its head. The cosmos expands inward, not outward. Gravity can drive things apart, not merely together. And the universe seems to defy entropy as it becomes more ordered, rather than the other way around. Strangest of all, the universe is exquisitely hospitable to life, despite its being constructed from undistinguished atoms and a few unexceptional rules of behavior. Universe in Creation explores whether the emergence of life, rather than being a mere cosmic afterthought, may be written into the most basic laws of nature.
Offering a fresh take on what brought the world—and us—into being, Gould helps us see the universe as the master of its own creation, not tethered to a singular event but burgeoning as new space and energy continuously stream into existence. It is a very old story, as yet unfinished, with plotlines that twist and churn through infinite space and time.
Darwin is credited with discovering evolution through natural selection, but Alfred Russel Wallace saw the same process at work in nature and elaborated the same theory. Dispelling misperceptions of Wallace as a secondary figure, James Costa reveals the two naturalists as equals in advancing one of the greatest scientific discoveries of all time.
Warless Societies and the Origin of War employs a comparative ethnographic analysis of warless and warlike hunting and gathering societies to isolate distinctive features of peaceful preagricultural people and to develop a theoretical model of the origin of war and the early coevolution of war and society. Examining key Upper Paleolithic cave paintings and burials that document lethal violence, Raymond Kelly's illumination of the transition from warlessness to warfare in several specific locales in Europe and the Middle East confounds understandings of the origin of war prevalent today.
Kelly addresses fundamental questions concerning the trinity of interrelationship between human nature, war, and the constitution of society: Is war a primordial and pervasive feature of human existence or a set of practices that arose at a certain time in our recent prehistoric past? Are there peaceful societies in which war is absent and, if so, what are they like and how do they differ from warlike societies? Do the critical differentiating features pertain to child-rearing practices, to modes of conflict resolution, to social and economic inequality, to resource competition, or to the constitution of social groups?
As the conclusions of such an inquiry are central to our conceptions of human nature, the book will interest a wide range of readers, from those curious about the origins of collective violence to those studying the roles social institutions play in society.
Raymond C. Kelly is Professor of Anthropology, University of Michigan.
Why did the United States develop political parties? How and why do party alignments change? Are the party-centered elections of the past better for democratic politics than the candidate-centered elections of the present? In this landmark book, John Aldrich goes beyond the clamor of arguments over whether American political parties are in resurgence or decline and undertakes a wholesale reexamination of the foundations of the American party system.
Surveying three critical episodes in the development of American political parties—from their formation in the 1790s to the Civil War—Aldrich shows how parties serve to combat three fundamental problems of democracy: how to regulate the number of people seeking public office; how to mobilize voters; and how to achieve and maintain the majorities needed to accomplish goals once in office. Overcoming these obstacles, argues Aldrich, is possible only with political parties.
Aldrich brings this innovative account up to date by looking at the profound changes in the character of political parties since World War II. In the 1960s, he shows, parties started to become candidate-centered organizations that are servants to their office seekers and officeholders. Aldrich argues that this development has revitalized parties, making them stronger, and more vital, with well-defined cleavages and highly effective governing ability.
Winner of the Don D. and Catherine S. Fowler Prize
The “abandonment” of Mesa Verde and the formation of the Rio Grande Pueblos represent two classic events in North American prehistory. Yet, despite a century of research, no consensus has been reached on precisely how, or even if, these two events were related. In this landmark study, Scott Ortman proposes a novel and compelling solution to this problem through an investigation of the genetic, linguistic, and cultural heritage of the Tewa Pueblo people of New Mexico.
Integrating data and methods from human biology, linguistics, archaeology, and cultural anthropology, Ortman shows that a striking social transformation took place as Mesa Verde people moved to the Rio Grande, such that the resulting ancestral Tewa culture was a unique hybrid of ideas and practices from various sources. While addressing several long-standing questions in American archaeology, Winds from the North also serves as a methodological guidebook, including new approaches to integrating archaeology and language based on cognitive science research. As such, it will be of interest to researchers throughout the social and human sciences.
The Zuni are a Southwestern people whose origins have long intrigued anthropologists. This volume presents fresh approaches to that question from both anthropological and traditional perspectives, exploring the origins of the tribe and the influences that have affected their way of life. Utilizing macro-regional approaches, it brings together many decades of research in the Zuni and Mogollon areas, incorporating archaeological evidence, environmental data, and linguistic analyses to propose new links among early Southwestern peoples.
The findings reported here postulate the differentiation of the Zuni language at least 7,000 to 8,000 years ago, following the initial peopling of the hemisphere, and both formulate and test the hypothesis that many Mogollon populations were Zunian speakers. Some of the contributions situate Zuni within the developmental context of Southwestern societies from Paleoindian to Mogollon. Others test the Mogollon-Zuni hypothesis by searching for contrasts between these and neighboring peoples and tracing these contrasts through macro-regional analyses of environments, sites, pottery, basketry, and rock art. Several studies of late prehistoric and protohistoric settlement systems in the Zuni area then express more cautious views on the Mogollon connection and present insights from Zuni traditional history and cultural geography. Two internationally known scholars then critique the essays, and the editors present a new research design for pursuing the question of Zuni origins.
By taking stock and synthesizing what is currently known about the origins of the Zuni language and the development of modern Zuni culture, Zuni Origins is the only volume to address this subject with such a breadth of data and interpretations. It will prove invaluable to archaeologists working throughout the North American Southwest as well as to others struggling with issues of ethnicity, migration, incipient agriculture, and linguistic origins.