Anthropology: Origins of Civilization Exam 1 Study Guide Use your class notes, l
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Anthropology: Origins of Civilization
Exam 1 Study Guide
Use your class notes, lecture PowerPoints, textbook (Understanding Humans: An Introduction to Physical Anthropology and Archaeology 11th Edition), and class films to answer these questions and study for the first exam.
What is Anthropology?
• What is relativism, and why is it important to anthropology?
• What is ethnocentrism?
• List the four subfields of anthropology, and describe each one.
Anthropological field methods
• Give some examples of anthropological fieldwork in each of the four subfields (cultural anthropology, archaeology, linguistics, and biological anthropology).
Evolutionary theory, natural selection, and heredity
• Describe the theories of catastrophism and uniformitarianism, and explain how they contributed to our modern day understanding of evolution.
• Define natural selection, and give an example of how it works.
• Who were Darwin and Wallace?
• What did Gregor Mendel contribute to our understanding of evolution?
• Explain the difference between phenotype and genotype.
• What are the four forces of evolution, and how does each one contribute to evolution?
• If sickle-cell anemia is a lethal disease, why is the gene frequency for sickle-shaped cells so high in parts of Africa, India, and the Middle East? Your answer should include an explicit discussion of natural selection, malaria, mosquitos, and land-clearing practices.
Modern human variation
• What is the difference between long-term adaptation and acclimatization? Give an example of each.
• Explain how and why human skin color varies. A good answer will discuss how UV rays, melanin, vitamin D, and folate determine human skin color. (Hint: watch the TED talk by Jablonski to review.)
• How do Bergman’s Rule and Allen’s Rule account for variation in human body size and shape?
• How have some human populations adapted to life at high altitudes (biologically and culturally)?
• Why are the descendants of some Northern European and African pastoralists lactose tolerant?
Race and racism
• According to anthropology, what is wrong with popular understandings of “race?”
• What were the theories of “monogenesis” and “polygenesis” about?
• Who was Franz Boas, and why was he important?
• Explain why there is no biological basis to race. Your answer should include a discussion of genetics and the history of human classification.
• How were the racial categories of “Hutu” and “Tutsi” created in Rwanda, and what were the results?
• What is hypodescent?
• How is race in Latin America different from race in the United States? What does this tell us about the nature of racial stereotypes?
• Choose a popular “theory of race,” and use anthropological concepts to explain why it is false.
Macroevolution (review your notes from the short film we watched for class)
• What is macroevolution?
• What is the difference between homologies and analogies in evolution?
• How does the study of primitive (or ancestral) and derived characteristics help us understand evolution?
• Define the biological species concept and the ecological species concept. How are they different?
• What is adaptive radiation? What kind of events can lead to an adaptive radiation of species?
• Why are new fossil discoveries important for understanding macroevolution?
Primates and primate behavior
• What are the major divisions of the primate order?
• List and describe the key physical and behavioral characteristics of primates that separate them from other mammals.
• What are the basic distinguishing traits of apes and monkeys?
• Review your notes from the film about primates. What evidence does it present for and against apes having culture?