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Black Caribs A case study in biocultural adaptation. Edited by M.H. Crawford. New York Plenum Press. 1984. xvii + 395 pp. figures tables references index. $59

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BLACKCARIBS:A CASE STUDY IN BIOCUL- pressure, growth and development, and derTURAL ADAPTATION.
Edited by M.H. Craw- matoglyphic patterns among the transford. New York: Plenum Press. 1984. xvii planted populations.
+ 395 pp., figures, tables, references, in- Section I11 covers genetic polymorphisms,
dex. $59.50 (cloth).
using a broad range of serological markers
including blood groups, red cell proteins and
Black Caribs: A Case Study in Biocultural enzymes (e.g., GGPD), and serum proteins
Adaptation (volume 3 in the series Current (e.g., haptoglobin). Separate chapters are inDevelopments in Anthropological Genetics) is cluded on immunoglobulins and abnormal
a multidisciplinary research project on the hemoglobins. Methods include electrophorephysical anthropology and evolutionary biol- sis, isoelectric focusing, immunofixation,
ogy of the Black Carib (Garifuna) people of computer simulation, estimation of genetic
the Caribbean and Central America. The 36 distances, and the construction of genetic
contributors to this volume represent a diver- maps and relationship matrices. Subpopulasity of academic and institutional affiliations tions from different geographic regions are
including university departments (Anthro- compared with a n emphasis upon ascertainpology, Sociology, Genetics, Psychology, Ge- ing the evolutionary effects of isolation and
ography, and Dentistry), natural history hybridization. Both univariate (e.g., t-tests)
museums, blood banks, genetics laboratories, and multivariate (e.g., discriminant funcand medical research institutes. Following tion) statistical techniques are employed. A
a n introduction by Crawford, the editor, the variety of specialized questions are explored,
field studies and theoretical selections are such as the relationship of body build and
arranged in 18 chapters in three sections: blood pressure, correlation of biological dis“Demography and Ethnohistory,” “Morphol- tance with geographic and linguistic disogy,” and “Genetics.” D.F. Roberts provides tance, hemoglobinopathies and fertility,
a final overview chapter.
intrapopulational vs. interpopulational variThe initial section reveals why the Black ability, heterozygosity a t particular loci, and
Caribs are ideal subjects for the investiga- the role of environmental differences in biotion of human microevolution: They com- logical diversification.
prise a culturally distinctive ethnic group
Black Caribs, one of the most thorough biowith a precisely documented demographic cultural investigations of a single ethnic
history. The Black Caribs originated on St. group ever undertaken, is a successful enterVincent Island in the Caribbean in the 17th prise only because of the well-organized cocentury and later migrated or were relocated ordination of a n enormous amount of field
a t known times to 54 new settlements in four and laboratory work. An effective balance is
countries (Belize, Guatemala, Honduras, and struck in the presentation of descriptive data,
Nicaragua) along the eastern coast of Cen- statistical tests, and theoretical interpretatral America. Topics in this section include tions. The morphological and genetic marker
population growth, census trends, migratory materials complement each other with even
behavior, kinship and family organization, coverage (six chapters on each) and the crosshousehold and neighborhood structure, mate checking of results. Sample sizes are large
selection patterns, ethnic relations, religion, and representative. The statistical techlanguage, and culture contact (e.g., with Cre- niques are appropriate and impressive in
ole populations).
scope. The individual contributions are of
Section I1 deals with morphological varia- evenly high quality, which is rare in a collections, and each of the six chapters feature tion of edited articles. The book is filled with
the statistical analysis of original data. helpful maps, tables, figures, and photoAgainst the background of ethnohistory and graphs.
The few minor criticisms of the volume are
within the context of population structure,
the evolutionary differentiation of the Black far outweighed by the overall importance and
Caribs is virtually reconstructed by the com- significance of the work. Considering its price
parison of variations in skin color, dental and specialized and technical nature, Black
traits, anthropometric characteristics, blood Caribs would not be suitable as a classroom
text. It would be profitable reading, however,
for advanced graduate students and professionals actually involved in anthropological
field work. There is also some duplication in
the description and statistical analysis of genetic characteristics of the blood. Hemoglobin genotypes, for example, are discussed in
five separate chapters (5, 14, 15, 16, and 17).
Although the editor points out that this is
the outcome of independent data collection
by two different research teams, it might be
considered distracting by certain readers. On
balance, Black Caribs is a well-designed and
effectively executed anthropological investigation. It should serve as a n enduring model
of the multidisciplinary approach to human
microevolution in particular ethnic groups.
Edited by W.L. Jungers. New York: Plenum
Press. 1985. xiv + 491 pp., figures, tables,
indices. $69.50 (cloth).
fossil record. Paleoreconstruction is specifically addressed by Smith and by Steudel; five
chapters (Heglund; McNeill Alexander; Jungers; Preuschoft and Demes; Ford and Corruccini) consider the anatomy and physiology
of the locomotor apparatus. Clutton-Brock,
Martin et al., Heglund, and Alexander open
the window to related studies of nonprimate
mammals. Bookstein gives three good examples of cephalometric comparison and, importantly, distinguishes form comparison (which
he demonstrates) from form recording (an assumption he challenges). Armstrong comprehensively reviews brain allometry along
developmental, physiological, behavioral,
and evolutionary points of view. Lande and
Leutenegger and Cheverud try to tease apart
the pressures that emphasize or depress size
and sex dimorphic characteristics. Martin,
Chivers, MacLarnon, and Hladik explore
gastrointestinal scaling and diet. Shea analyzes ontogenetic and phylogenetic processes
with regard to pongid and hominid skulls.
Larsen reviews the developmental profiles of
heart, lungs, kidney, liver, and other organs.
Mistakes and inconsistencies are inevitable in so large and diverse a book. A central
assumption-that growth patterns can be reconstructed from cross-sectional data-can be
challenged, and this dilemma was frequently
acknowledged by the contributors. Nevertheless, the book is worth real study. I read most
of it twice, sometimes at home, sometimes in
my office. I felt, however, that I should have
been in the library where I could check unfamiliar references, return to the text, and
then back to the citations, mastering one by
one: growth, sex dimorphism, evolution of
the brain, anatomical and physiological differences among smaller and larger animals.
Ortega y Gasset, the philosopher and historian, once designated Galileo “the First
Modern Man” [1958, p.l] to emphasize both
his methods of problem solving by experiment and his controversial stance against
the established thought of the early 17th century. Size and Scaling in Primate Biology
illustrates that we of the late 20th century
remain Galileo’s heirs. The contributors to
this book continue to explore and to explain
the constraints physical laws impose upon
natural phenomena-in this case, on biological structures.
In the 20 chapters of Size and Scaling in
Primate Biology, editor William Jungers has
distilled many size-related phenomena for the
community of primatologists. Most chapters
are 18 to 30 pages long, while four articles
are somewhat shorter and three others are
much longer. Since the book is almost 500
pages long, more stringent control might
have been exerted to finer focus and to even
out the book as a synthetic overview: cut the
longest papers, delete many data tables, edit
“Methods” sections so they read less like
journal or dissertation contributions. Nevertheless, this is a good summary of many allometric expressions: sex dimorphism,
patterns of growth in various tissues and organs, and interspecific and evolutionary size
differences among species. Seven chapters
(Armstrong; Martin and Harvey; Shea; Bookstein; Cochard Gingerich and Smith; Wolporn concentrate on, but other chapters
discuss, skulls, brains, and teeth, and/or the
Department of Anthropology
University of Miami
Coral Gables, Florida
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