Meat-Eating and Human Evolution

Hardcover | May 15, 2001

EditorCraig B. Stanford, Henry T. Bunn, Russell L. Ciochon

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When, why, and how early humans began to eat meat are three of the most fundamental unresolved questions in the study of human origins. Before 2.5 million years ago the presence and importance of meat in the hominid diet is unknown. After stone tools appear in the fossil record it seems clearthat meat was eaten in increasing quantities, but whether it was obtained through hunting or scavenging remains a topic of intense debate. This book takes a novel and strongly interdisciplinary approach to the role of meat in the early hominid diet, inviting well-known researchers who study thehuman fossil record, modern hunter-gatherers, and nonhuman primates to contribute chapters to a volume that integrates these three perspectives. Stanford's research has been on the ecology of hunting by wild chimpanzees. Bunn is an archaeologist who has worked on both the fossil record and modernforaging people. This will be a reconsideration of the role of hunting, scavenging, and the uses of meat in light of recent data and modern evolutionary theory. There is currently no other book, nor has there ever been, that occupies the niche this book will create for itself.

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When, why, and how early humans began to eat meat are three of the most fundamental unresolved questions in the study of human origins. Before 2.5 million years ago the presence and importance of meat in the hominid diet is unknown. After stone tools appear in the fossil record it seems clearthat meat was eaten in increasing quantities...

Craig B. Stanford is at University of Southern California. Henry T. Bunn is at University of Wisconsin.

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Format:HardcoverPublished:May 15, 2001Publisher:Oxford University PressLanguage:English

The following ISBNs are associated with this title:

ISBN - 10:0195131398

ISBN - 13:9780195131390

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Table of Contents

PrefaceForwordIntroductionI MEAT-EATING AND THE FOSSIL RECORD1. Deconstructing the Serengeti2. Taphonomy of the Swartkrans hominid postcrania and its bearing on issues of meat-eating and fire management3. Neanderthal hunting and meat-processing in the Near East: evidence from Kebara Cave (Israel)4. Modeling the edible landscapeII LIVING NONHUMAN ANALOGS FOR MEAT-EATING5. The dog-eat-dog world of carnivores: a review of past and present carnivore community dynamics6. Meat and the early human diet: insights from Neotropical primate studies7. The other faunivory: primate insectivory and early human diet8. Meat-eating by the fourth African apeIII MODERN HUMAN FORAGERS9. Hunting, power scavenging, and butchering10. Is meat the hunter's property? Big game, ownership, and explanations of hunting and sharing11. Specialized meat-eating in the Holocene: an archaeological case from the frigid tropics of high altitude Peru12. Mutualistic Hunting13. Intra-group resource transfers:comparative evidence, models, and implications for human evolution14. The evolutionary consequences of increased carnivory in hominids15. Neonate body size and hominid carnivoryCONCLUSIONS

Editorial Reviews

"Stanford and Bunn attacked head-on the problem of where, when, and why meat eating appeared by assembling a group of leading anthropologists, archaeologists, and primatologists to discuss the issue at a Wenner-Gren Foundation-sponsored meeting in 1998. Their edited book is the best summaryyet of the evidence for meat consumption by hominids. ... The book ... will appeal to anyone interested in human evolution, especially interdisciplinary studies..."--Choice