Aureli, Dr. Filippo, U. Veracruzana, Xalapa, Mexico - To aid workshop on 'Fission-Fusion Dynamics and Behavioral Flexibility: Comparative Perspectives,' 2015, Valladolid, Yucatan, in collaboration with Dr. Colleen Schaffner
Preliminary abstract: Following the productive discussion at a 2004 Wenner-Gren funded conference, Aureli et al. (2008) proposed theoretical frameworks for socioecological factors underpinning fission-fusion dynamics, for communication and cognitive implications of fission-fusion dynamics and for the evolutionary processes at the basis of fission-fusion dynamics, including those involving our own ancestors. The proposed workshop aims to expand from these achievements by reframing these theoretical frameworks within a revised perspective on behavioral flexibility and by proposing additional theoretical frameworks. The term fission-fusion has been used to refer to overall flexible group membership in contrast to fixed membership of cohesive groups. In the proposed workshop we will examine the fine-tuned behavioral flexibility afforded to group members by different degrees of fission-fusion dynamics. This perspective on behavioral flexibility applies not only to comparisons across species, but also to comparisons across populations of the same species. To achieve this goal and characterize such detailed behavioral flexibility, workshop participants will propose, test and deliver a series of suitable metrics to quantify the degree of fission-fusion dynamics, which will allow testing the predictions of the theoretical frameworks with phylogeny-controlled comparative analyses.
Moraga, Dr. Mauricio, U. de Chile, Santiago, Chile - To aid 'XIII Meeting of the Latin American Association of Biological Anthropology (ALAB),' 2014, Santiago, in collaboration with Dr. Sergio Flores
Preliminary abstract: The ALAB meeting is organized every two years in order to offer the opportinity for upcoming and established scientists from Latin America to exchange their scientific experience. In this opportunity, the XIII meeting of the Latin American Association of Biological Anthropology will take place in the city of Santiago, Chile, in October 2014. We will be expecting around 300-350 participants, including students and professionals from several Latin American and other countries. Our aims are joining distinct scholars known by their significant contribution to the Biological Anthropology field, particularly to the Latin American research, and to create a healthy environment for allowing contact between scholars and students, as well as to promote future collaborative studies to solve particular anthropological issues.
Burt, Nicole Marie, U. of Alberta, Edmonton, Canada - To aid research on 'Reconstructing Juvenile Diet In Medieval York Using a New Method of Dentine Stable Isotope Analysis,' supervised by Dr. Sandra Garvie-Lok
NICOLE M. BURT, then a student at University of Alberta, Edmonton, Canada, was awarded funding in April 2011 to aid research on 'Reconstructing Juvenile Diet in Medieval York Using a New Method of Dentine Stable Isotope Analysis,' supervised by Dr. Sandra Garvie-Lok. The diet of children changes throughout early childhood from birth, through breastfeeding and weaning. In past populations, weaning was a critical period because it was stressful and often resulted in infant death. By analyzing collagen preserved in human remains using the stable isotope analysis of nitrogen and carbon it is possible to reconstruct these diets. Deciduous tooth dentine is useful for this because it begins forming prenatally and is completed in early childhood. This research created a stable isotope microsampling method to trace the changing dietary signals in the teeth. This method was used to reconstruct juvenile diet at Fishergate House (14th - 16th century) York. The dietary data were compared with growth and pathological data from the skeletons to analyze overall health. The results show that weaning was usually complete by 2 years. Variation in practice was seen looking at individuals. It appears that children with health problems may have been breastfed longer in an attempt to improve health. Childhood health at the site appears to have been average for the period despite its urban location and low socioeconomic class. High levels of marine proteins such as fish in the diets of children and adults likely account for this.
Burt, Nicole M. 2013. Stable Isotope Rtio Analysis of Breastfeeding and Weaning Practices of Children from Medieval Fishergate House York, UK. American Journal of Physical Anthropology 152(3):407-416.
Engelbrecht, Dr. Beate, Institute for Scientific Research, Goettingen, Germany - To aid conference on origins of visual anthropology: putting the past together, 2000, IWF- Institute for Scientific Film, in collaboration with Dr. Rolf Husmann
Sosna, Dr. Daniel, U. of West Bohemia, Pilsen, Czech Republic - To aid 'European Workshop of the Society for Anthropological Sciences,' 2010, U. of West Bohemia, in collaboration with Dr. Stephen Michael Lyon
'Workshop of the Society for Anthropological Sciences'
September 22-44, 2010, American Center, Pilsen, Czech Republic
Organizers: Daniel Sosna (University of West Bohemia), Stephen Lyon and David Henig (Durham University)
The first European workshop of the Society for Anthropological Sciences (SASci) was aimed at the promotion of rigorous approaches to the study of human sociocultural and biological variability. The primary goal of the workshop was the advancement of formal scientific approaches in anthropology. The last thirty years have witnessed the development
of a critical anthropology fostering the view that anthropology has been a literary project where rhetorical sophistication prevailed. SASci has grown out of the activities of anthropologists who prefer holistic and scientifically rigorous views of anthropology. The second goal of the workshop was to investigate the overlaps and tensions among subdisciplines
of anthropology through interdisciplinary design. The organizers assumed that the crucial predisposition for participation in the workshop was not the topic of research but the point of view. Formal approaches were applied to various anthropological topics including kinship terminologies, evolution of language and material culture, cognition and mortuary practices. The discussions demonstrated that formal methods can accommodate various kinds of anthropological data and expand to new spheres of interest.
Harris, Dr. John William Kendal, Rutgers U., New Brunswick, NJ; and Mbua, Dr. Emma N., National Museums of Kenya, Nairobi, Kenya - To aid collaborative research on 'International Collaborative Paleoanthropological Research Project (lcpr), Ileret, Kenya'
Valentine, Benjamin Thomas, U. of Florida, Gainesville, FL - To aid research on 'Isotopic Perspectives on Migration and Identity: A View From the Harappan Hinterland,' supervised by Dr. John Krigbaum
BENJAMIN T. VALENTINE, then a student at University of Florida, Gainesville, Florida, received funding in April 2011 to aid research on 'Isotopic Perspectives on Migration and Identity: A View from the Harappan Hinterland,' supervised by Dr. John Krigbaum. Indus Civilization cemetery burials provide an important opportunity for understanding the interaction between migration and identity in ancient urban South Asia. Life history data from the multi-isotope analysis of Integration Era (2600-1900BC) individuals at the lowland sites of Harappa (n=45) and Farmana (n=21) inform a mortuary analysis that seeks to embed the social dimensions of mortuary practices within a context of interregional interaction and highland-lowland exchange. Carbon and oxygen isotope data are variable but show little intra-cemetery patterning. Strontium and lead isotope data, however, suggest nearly all inhumed individuals were first generation immigrants separated in early childhood from natal groups living in the resource-rich highlands. Further analyses are needed to confirm the trend, but initial interpretations are best explained by fosterage. Known to be practiced in historical South Asia, fosterage can simultaneously create relationships of mutual obligation and hierarchical differentiation between culturally distinct groups. By contrast, isotope data from post-urban Sanauli suggest geographic origin demarcated identity less clearly during the Localization Era (1900-1300BC). If validated by further work, this archaeological case study helps to understand the complex outcomes of migration across urban cultural boundaries.
Jillani, Ngalla Edward, National Museums of Kenya, Nairobi, Kenya - To aid dissertation write-up in physical-biological anthropology at the University of Witwatersrand Medical School, Johannesburg, South Africa, supervised by Dr. Paul Robert Manger