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Beverly Strassmann

Dept. of Anthropology | University of Michigan
Presentation: "What Explains Patrilineal Cooperation?" (co-author, Nikhil Kurapati)

Research focuses on evolution and human behavior. Current projects include a longitudinal study of the influence of family structure on child health and survival in the Dogon of Mali, West Africa. Strassmann uses evolutionary theory to understand the social niche of the child and to predict favorable and unfavorable health outcomes. She also focuses on kinship to explore the interaction between biology and culture. In particular she is interested in the genetic effects of cultural practices that constrain female sexuality, such as patrilineality and polygyny. She teaches courses on quantitative field methods, human reproductive and behavioral ecology, and natural selection.