In The News: Department of Anthropology

Atlas Obscura
October 20, 2020

ACCORDING TO PIERS MITCHELL, A paleopathologist from the University of Cambridge, scientists have been extracting data from ancient human poop for over a century. “In the past, we’ve been able to look at a single coprolite from a single person”—that is to say, a preserved turd—”and study the microbiome of that one individual.” (The microbiome is the complex collection of microbes living in every animal’s digestive tract.) Now, in a newly released paper in Philosophical Transactions B, Mitchell and co-authors Susanna Sabin and Kirsten I. Bos have blown the lid off of single-turd analysis: by analyzing two medieval latrines’ worth of number two.

September 23, 2020

A group of social scientists who conduct cross-cultural research are casting a critical lens on their own practices.

September 23, 2020

A group of social scientists who conduct cross-cultural research are casting a critical lens on their own practices.

Daily Maverick
September 18, 2020

A life without bees is no life at all. Literally. Not only are they essential for pollination of plants but they are intricately entwined with the evolution of our species. University of Nevada paleoanthropologist Alyssa Crittenden argues that honey and bee larvae consumption are what “made it possible for early Homo to nutritionally out-compete other species of hominid and may have provided critical energy to fuel their enlarging and evolving brains”.

The Daily Targum
September 7, 2020

Voter disillusionment is a real and pressing issue in our democracy.

The Great Courses Daily
July 15, 2020

According to BBC Travel, a species of ant called the Hormigas culonas—or “big-butt ant”—fetches prices as high as 300,000 Colombian pesos per kilogram, or approximately $83 USD. Part of the reason ants are in such high demand is due to their nutritional value, a recently studied and similar species shows.

June 30, 2020

The celebrated new Hulu program "Taste the Nation," hosted by acclaimed writer and "Top Chef" star Padma Lakshmi, is a "journey across America" to explore the cuisines and connected life-stories of different immigrant groups. It makes an important statement about the value of immigrants in Trump's America, but the immigrant rights movement must learn key lessons from what it misrepresents and ignores.

Toronto Sun
June 26, 2020

Guys – are you looking for love during these uncertain times? Get a dog. Make it a French bulldog, a puppy for best results.

The Great Courses Daily
June 25, 2020

The diminishing sugar demand took a worldwide pandemic to occur, according to Bloomberg. “The global closure of restaurants, sports arenas, and cinemas means sugar demand will drop this season for the first time in four decades,” the article said. “Drink and confectionery sales at giants including Coca-Cola Co. and Nestle SA have fallen, and while economies start to reopen, it’s unclear how quickly demand will recover as incomes and employment fall.”

Anthropologist on the Street Podcast
June 15, 2020

Anthropology graduate student Lyndsey Craig examines pubic hair removal practices across 72 societies, and how the practices are tied to cultural concerns about hygiene and sexual activity. Whereas most literature on public hair removal practices focus primarily on Western cultures, in particular how women are included in and affected by marketing, pornography, and pop culture, Craig and biological anthropologist Dr. Peter Gray performed historical, cross-cultural research across dozens of non-Western societies. They found that whether and how pubic hair was removed depended on a diverse array of cultural messages about hygiene, fertility, sexuality and beauty.

June 1, 2020

Dan Saladino looks at the legal and illegal trade in wild meat. Links made between Covid-19 and wild animals has led to calls for a total ban. This could be a mistake Dan explains.

Boulder City Review
May 21, 2020

What might bring about that deadly — and economically debilitating — coronavirus comeback?