“More than simply a textbook or compilation, this volume is nothing short of a handbook for a young and vigorous branch of biology. Authoritative, Comprehensive, and up-to-date, it will be an essential book for student and expert alike. Muehlenbein and his contributors have defined human evolutionary biology for the next decade.”

Peter T. Ellison

Harvard University

“The chapters in this volume provide up-to-date coverage of topics important for evolutionary medicine, and not available elsewhere. Beginners will value their clarity, advanced readers will appreciate the differing perspectives and opinions of individual scientists that reflect the complexity and diversity of the field.”

Randolf M. Nesse

University of Michigan


Preface: Michael Muehlenbein

Part I: Theory and Methods

1. Evolutionary Theory: Douglas J. Futuyma

  1. 2.Principles in the Study of Human Adaptation in Human Biology: A. Roberto Frisancho

3. History of the Study of Human Biology: Michael A. Little

  1. 4.Genetics in Human Biology: Robert J. Meier and

    Jennifer Raff

5. Demography: James Holland Jones

  1. 6.History, Methods, and General Applications of Anthropometry  in Human Biology: Noël Cameron and Laura L. Jones

  2. 7.Energetics and Body Composition: History, Methods

    and Inter-relationships: Peter S. W. Davies and Alexia

    J. Murphy

  1. 8.Evolutionary Endocrinology: Richard G. Bribiescas and

    Michael P. Muehlenbein

  1. 9.Ethical Considerations for Human Biology Research:

    Trudy R. Turner

    Commentary: A Primer on Human Subjects

    Applications and Informed Consents: Michael P.      


Part II: Phenotypic and Genotypic Variation

  1. 10.Body Size and Shape: William Leonard and Peter T.


11. Human Adaptation to High Altitude: Tom D. Brutsaert

12. Skin Coloration: Nina G. Jablonski

13. Classical Markers of Human Variation: Robert J. Meier

14. DNA Markers of Human Variation: Michael E. Steiper

15. Ten Facts about Human Variation: Jonathan Marks

  1. 16.The Evolution and Endocrinology of Human Behavior:   A Focus on Sex Differences and Reproduction: Peter    B. Gray

Part III: Reproduction

17. Human Mate Choice: David P. Schmitt

  1. 18.Mate Choice, the Major Histocompatibility Complex, and Offspring Viability: Claus Wedekind and Guillaume Evanno

  2. 19.Why Women Differ in Ovarian Function: Genetic           

      Polymorphism, Developmental Conditions and Adult

      Lifestyle: Grazyna Jasienska

  1. 20.Pregnancy and Lactation: Ivy L. Pike and Lauren A.


  1. 21.Male Reproduction: Physiology, Behavior and

      Ecology: Michael P. Muehlenbein and Richard G.



Human Evolutionary Biology, Edited by Michael Muehlenbein

Part IV: Growth and Development

22. Evolution of Human Growth: Barry Bogin

  1. 23.Variation in Human Growth Patterns due to

      Environmental Factors: Stanley J. Ulijaszek

  1. 24.Hormonal Responses to Social Challenges in Human

      Children: Mark V. Flinn

  1. 25.Human Biology, Energetics and the Human Brain:  

      Benjamin C. Campbell

  1. 26.Embodied Capital and Extra-Somatic Wealth in   

      Human Evolution and History: Jane B. Lancaster and

      Hillard S. Kaplan

Part V: Evolutionary Medicine

  1. 27.Evolutionary Medicine, Immunity and Infectious   

      Diseases: Michael P. Muehlenbein

  1. 28.Complex Chronic Diseases in Evolutionary  

      Perspective: S. Boyd Eaton

  1. 29.Evolutionary Medicine and the Causes of Chronic    

      Disease: Paul W. Ewald

  1. 30.Beyond Feast-Famine: Brain Evolution, Human Life   

      History and the Metabolic Syndrome: Christopher W.


  1. 31.Human Longevity and Senescence: What is Uniquely   

      Human?: Douglas E. Crews and James A. Stewart

  1. 32.Evolutionary Psychiatry: Mental Disorders and    

      Behavioral Evolution: Brant Wenegrat

  1. 33.Industrial Pollutants and Human Evolution: Lawrence M. Schell

  2. 34.Acculturation and Health: Thomas W. McDade and

      Colleen H. Nyberg


Human evolutionary biology

Human evolutionary biology

Human evolutionary biology

Human evolutionary biology

Human evolutionary biology

Human evolutionary biology

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Review by Josh Snodgrass, Department of Anthropology, University of Oregon. Published in American Journal of Human Biology, 2011. Snodgrass_review.pdf

Department of Anthropology

Student Building 130

701 E. Kirkwood Ave

Bloomington in 47405

Reviews of Human Evolutionary Biology

Review by Lorena Madrigal, Department of Anthropology, University of South Florida. Published in American Journal of Physical Anthropology, 2012. Madrigal_review.pdf

Editor’s response to review by Lorena Madrigal:

To date, Human Evolutionary Biology has been very favorably reviewed by Peter Ellison, Randy Nesse, Steve Gangestad and Josh Snodgrass. I cannot say the same about a recent review in the American Journal of Physical Anthropology by Lorena Madrigal (Professor at the University of South Florida, and current president of the American Association of Physical Anthropology). Lorena has unleashed an unjustifiable attack on myself and many of you, for unknown reasons. While I of course understand and appreciate the purpose of peer-review and professional critique, this review is an unproductive exercise in unprofessionalism, and illustrative of something much deeper in our field, or at least in some of its members (and please note that I have never had a single interaction with Lorena in the past). My initial reaction upon reading this was actually much more emotional than I will try to communicate here.

Her primary claim is that the book lacks editorial oversight. Her evidence is as follows:

  1. a.Some chapters contain a few grammatical errors. These are likely the result of our fast production time with the copy editors. Recall that some chapters and revisions were submitted long after their deadlines, forcing a very contracted actual production in time for the Spring semester of 2011 (we originally aimed at the Fall semester of 2010, but were unable to meet that goal). Lorena is also picking on our use of British English instead of US (British English was chosen for us because the initial printing came out of the UK).

  1. b.Some concepts of human pair bonding, mate choice, parental care and evolutionary medicine are found in several chapters (not just one per topic). This, in fact, is how the book was designed. There must be some overlap (not repetition as she implies) to keep some congruency, As I explain in the preface, the book is not designed like a novel, to be read from front to back. And it is too large to be used in an 8, or even 16, week course. Instructors are rather encouraged to pick and choose which chapters they wish to cover in the classroom. And then of course the other primary usage of this book is as a reference/review. It follows logically that some of the most important topics in modern human evolutionary biology will be found in multiple chapters. And I was particularly careful to go back and self-reference where I could in each of your chapters (that is, I would state "see chapter XX for further details" when possible). I think the best books are written this way, with some overlap and lots of self-referencing.

  1. c.Some chapters appear to contradict each other. Her only example is comparing information from Lancaster and Kaplan's chapter with Eaton, McDade's and Nybergs chapters on protein support for offspring. She is assuming that Lancaster and Kaplan do not understand that humans are mammals and that female breastfeeding provides protein to offspring. Lancaster and Kaplan in their statement are obviously referring to weaned offspring, and this is obvious to the educated reader. Yet the editor is blamed for leaving seemingly contradictory statements in the book (they do not contradict each other), and the authors are assumed to not understand basic human biology. This is shocking.

  1. d.Some chapters contain statements that are offensive to Lorena. These statements are found exclusively in chapters authored by males, and are in reference to female sexual behaviors. These include statements by Bogin, Schmitt and Ewald. I find the most shocking accusation to be that made towards Schmitt regarding results from a paper by Grammer et al. 2004. Those of us versed in evolutionary psychology will be familiar with this reference, Schmitt is accused of implying something quite unjustified. Lorena feels comfortable criticizing topics she is completely unfamiliar with, and in her effort indirectly accuses some of our authors of sexism.

Lorena accuses the majority of authors as being adaptationist, which is apparently fine with her if we are discussing physical traits, but is completely off the record when discussing behavioral traits. This is despite the fact that there are mountains of research on the physiological and genetic bases of human behaviors. She accuses Flinn and Schmitt of having had "no exposure to the concept of cross-cultural variation and to modern evolutionary theory." I am just shocked, knowing what I do about the authors. And she accuses Steiper's understanding of human biological variation to be suck in the 1900's. I am so, so sorry for such an attack on individual authors like this.

I have read many book reviews, and this is the worst that I have ever encountered. A bad book review is one thing, as it is helpful to potential buyers. The present review by Lorena appears personally motivated and grossly inappropriate. Her illogic flows from beginning to end; she even goes as far to suggest that the book could be more reasonably priced. I think this is a dead giveaway for her having some ulterior motives for writing such a dishonest review, as the book (at $52 new paperback on Amazon) is half the price of all competition (like Stinson, Bogin and O’Rourke’s Human Biology, and Mielke, Konigsberg and Relethford’s Human Biological Variation), and in fact much more inclusive. I can only hope that when people read this review, its gross accusations, choice of language and clear ignorance of the expertise of the authors, they will quickly realize that this is a biased and ridiculous review.

Some anonymous comments, sent to the editor by individual authors, in response to Madrigal’s reivew:

  1. I am disappointed that someone with such irrational opinions is the president of our professional society. Shame on her for having such lack of forethought of the consequences for others caused by her ignorance and ego.

  2. This is nothing short of sabotage.

  3. Madrigal had some sort of ax to grind.  Perhaps this motivation arose from her attempt to enlighten her seminar members to her presumed mastery of evolutionary biology underwritten by her current presidential power.

  4. I would argue that this kind of trivial opinion unsupported by any reasonable analysis, combined with her lack of appreciation for the volume's construction, is at best spiteful.

  5. It is absolutely shocking that a bio-anthro person (and a president of APAA!) is not aware of theory and tons of research on evolutionary approach to human behavior. She made a fool of herself when she questioned adaptive significance of behavior or mental illness. Perhaps we should copy some most important papers in this area and send her a package so she could educate herself. What a shame for the society to have such an ignorant person for president.

  6. She didn’t take a scientific approach, but squandered her review space as a forum for her pet peeves.  That should be apparent to most thoughtful readers. 

  7. Her comments about men writing about women's sexuality are perhaps the worst examples of her bias. She puts words into the 'mouths' of the authors. The authors report what is in the literature, with the references. Then Madrigal ADDS words that are not in the text or in the original references. Madrigals' comments at the level of 'smart-ass' undergrads trying to take pot-shots at established scholars.