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Atlas of radiographs of early man. By M. F. Skinner and G.H. Sperber. New York Alan R. Liss Inc. 1982. xiv + 346 pp. figures references index. $70

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available for the timepoints that we will
never be able to recapture any more and/or
on populations that cease to exist today or
have undergone changes beyond alterations.
As a typical example, Roberts (Chapter 13)
demonstrates that such dynamic changes of
population structure can be pictured through
crude but inexpensive cross-examination of
the interwoven fabric of historical records,
documented ecology, and existing morphological and gene marker data on our generation as well as on our immediate progenitors.
In summary, this volume, like its predecessor, certainly provides a n up-to-date account
of the subject and should be useful to experts
and beginners alike. Its quality production
and binding should withstand the heavy use
that it merits, although the price is a bit high
for it to be shelved in a n anthropologist’s or
a population geneticist’s personal library.
M. F. Skinner and G. H. Sperber. New York:
Alan R. Liss, Inc. 1982. xiv + 346 pp., figures, references, index. $70.00 (cloth).
the Introduction. The radiographs are presented in geographical groups. These are:
Subsaharan Africa, which is represented predominantly by Sterkfontein and Swartkrans
specimens, North Africa, which has radiographs of two mandibular fragments, Europe (the largest part of the atlas), and
miscellaneous areas. This last includes Skhul
1, the Trinil femur, and the Old Crow specimen. The femur seems out of place here and
it is unfortunate that the contrast of its radiograph is such that the medullary cavity cannot be seen, despite the authors’ hopes about
the future use of radiographs of postcranial
The quality of the reproductions of the radiographs is, by and large, excellent, especially since some of the more heavily
mineralized specimens must have presented
formidable technical problems. The publisher has also gone to a great deal of trouble
to give high-quality prints.
I am not a t all sure that the atlas will find
a large readership. It will be of great use to
those who deal with descriptions and analysis of original hominid specimens. It will also
help those involved in the understanding of
craniofacial growth from a n evolutionary
perspective as well a s those interested in aging immature fossil hominid specimens. The
best test of its utility will then be when the
results of the authors’ own studies on these
radiographs are published.
This atlas results from the joining of two
sets of radiographs that were part of the data
bases of the authors’ Ph.D. dissertations.
G.H. Sperber worked on the morphology of
the cheek teeth of the early hominids from
the S. African cave sites. M.F. Skinner
worked on a wider range of hominids and
looked at tooth maturation and wear together with craniofacial growth. The stated
purpose of the atlas is to present these new
radiographs of fossil hominids so that other
researchers can profit by them. The authors
point out that although the radiographs were
taken to help answer their own questions,
they feel that there is much more information to be extracted from them. They point,
for example, to studies that might be undertaken on trabecular orientation as it might
relate to masticatory and other forces and on
the variability in cranial vault and long bone
cortex thicknesses. They also hope that, because age estimation is subjective, the readership will check their age estimates of
dentally immature specimens and improve
on them, if possible.
The clear format gives the following information: site, specimen, number, geological
archeological and chronological context, brief
description, dental age, and some brief selfexplanatory comments. Their dental description and aging methods are clearly stated in
Center for Demographic and
Population Genetics
University of Texas
Houston, Texas
The Johns Hopkins University
Baltimore, Maryland
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figuren, radiographic, liss, atlas, references, 346, sperber, index, skinner, man, inc, new, early, york, 1982, xiv, alan
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