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Ecce Homo. An annotated bibliographic history of physical anthropology. Compiled by Frank Spencer. Westport Connecticut Greenwood Press. 1986. xiii + 495 pp. figures tables name index subject index. $49

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280
BOOK REVIEWS
gut of Lindow Man. Robert G. Scaife (not
listed on the page of contributors) describes
pollen from the stomach and gut in Chapter
27. He reports a rare and intriguing find of
mistletoe pollen and raises the question of
sacrifice by Druids, who considered the plant
sacred. Chapter 28 examines the parasites in
Lindow Man’s upper intestine. Chapter 29 is
a postscript on the technique of Electron Spin
Resonance (ESR) spectroscopy used to test
the thermal history of the food remains. Lindow Man’s last meal may have been flat,
unleavened bread cooked quickly over a hot
fire. ESR spectroscopy may have the potential to unlock inaccessible areas in the study
of past diets and food preparation.
This book is valuable as it not only describes numerous techniques of interest to
biological anthropologists but also presents a
model of how a body can be investigated by
a large team of scientists. It tells a very intriguing story, and it probably will become popular with the interested public. As R.C.
Turner writes (p. 176), “The fascination and
something of the horror inspired in the past
by the bog burials remains today.”
ROSETYSON
S a n Diego Museum of Man
San Diego, California
ECCEHOMO.AN ANNOTATED
BIBLIOGRAPHICduplicated on p. 259; and T. Dale Stewart’s
The People of America, 1973, appears as a
HISTORYOF PHYSICAL
ANTHROPOLOGY.
Compiled by Frank Spencer. Westport, primary entry on p. 324, with single chapters
in the book being accorded similar status on
Connecticut: Greenwood Press. 1986. xiii
495 pp., figures, tables, name index, subject p. 464 and p. 471). Spencer arbitrarily chose
1960 as the cutoff point, although about 15%
index. $49.95 (cloth).
of all 20th century entries are as recent as
The major problems that Frank Spencer the early 1980s and are included only to
must have faced when compiling Ecce Homo. “highlight trends and developments in both
A n Annotated Bibliographic History of Phys- method and theory following 1960.”
Nearly all of the annotations are both inical Anthropology were: 1) how to delimit
such a thoroughly interdisciplinary field as sightful and valuable, due not only to Spenphysical anthropology, which is related to 2) cer’s considerable knowledge of history, but
who to include or exclude with respect to the especially because they provide extensive
relevance of their contributions to both theo- cross-references to related papers cited in this
retical and methodological trends, and 3) de- book and elsewhere. However, there are a
ciding where to stop. Since no two individuals number of instances in the section on 19th
are apt to concur about the solutions to these century literature where no annotations are
problems, this book will probably be viewed given at all, including papers by Hewett Coby most as somewhat idiosyncratic. Indeed it trell Watson (1836) on p, 193, Frederic Samis, but no doubt to a much lesser extent than uel Eve (1889) on p. 213, Thomas Smith
had it been compiled by either myself or the Williamson (1850-1856) on p. 255 and at least
great majority of other professionals in the 13 additional authors. There are also a numfield.
ber of primary entries where the annotation
The purpose of the book, as explained in a is less than helpful, as for example, a n 1886
short preface, is to facilitate explorations into paper by Daniel John Cunningham (p. 284),
the history of physical anthropology. To ac- where one reads only that “this work is parcomplish this, Spencer includes 2,340 anno- ticularly well illustrated.” One cannot help
tated primary references within four major but wonder why these entries were included,
chronological sections: the Ancient World since the process for selecting papers was
(Homer’s Illiad and Odyssey are the first two based primarily on their relevance to methentries) to the close of the 17th century, fol- odological and theoretical trends and to hislowed by literature coverage for the 18th, torical controversies rather than solely to a
19th, and 20th centuries. There are actually scholar’s scientific prominence (p. xii).
fewer than 2,340 different primary referIn this context, Spencer freely acknowlences, since many that have apparent rele- edges that some scholars may have been
vance to different subareas of inquiry are overlooked completely and the works of othrepeated (e.g., the two entries by Herman ers not fully represented. There is no need
Ten Kate, 1888, and 1892, on p. 163, are for me to belabor this point by naming a
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281
BOOK REVIEWS
great many individuals who, in my opinion,
have contributed greatly to the discipline but
who are not included. However, I find it curious that George Gaylord Simpson is noted
for only two primary references (1940,1955)
on p. 373, both of which are papers on early
primates, while nothing a t all is mentioned
about his influence on physical anthropology
with respect to taxonomy and classification.
Dobzhansky, Fisher, Mayr, Wright, and
many other important contributors to modern evolutionary theory are likewise cited
only briefly in Table 4.1 (pp. 296-297). To be
sure, these individuals are not physical anthropologists (which was not a criterion for
inclusion), but their contributions to the field
were certainly of noteworthy significance.
Nonetheless, these were necessary decisions
that Spencer had to make for practical reasons, and underscore the inherent idiosyncratic nature of such a compilation.
Since this book’s relative worth is obviously linked to the accuracy of its indices,
I turned at random to p. 479 of the Name
Index and checked the page numbers, secondary reference numbers, and numbers for
annotation references behind the names of
the first 100 individuals (W.L. Johannsen to
C.A. Lesueur). Spencer organized this index
so that primary entries are given as page
numbers following a name, secondary references in the text or footnotes are given as
page numbers in parentheses, and references
within the annotations following a primary
entry are represented by the primary entry
number in parentheses. Ten errors were
found among the 156 numbers included
therein, for a n error rate of about 6.4%. Two
of these were completely trivial, with numbers out of numerical sequence, and a third
was a simple typo. However, the other seven
were a bit more troublesome. Either parentheses were missing, thus confusing primary
with secondary references, or a n erroneous
page number was given for a primary entry.
THEORIESOF HUMANEVOLUTION.
A CENTURY OF DEBATE1844-1944. By Peter J.
Bowler. Baltimore, Maryland The Johns
Hopkins University Press. 1986. xiii 318
pp., figures, tables, notes, index. $32.50
(cloth).
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The year 1950 marks a watershed in the
history of physical anthropology. In that year,
the Cold Spring Harbor Symposium on
Thus, if seven errors of this kind occur out of
every 156 numbers, and if 156 can be taken
as a valid sample of all numbers given in
this index (I made no count, but would estimate a total of about 1,750), then the overall
error rate would be somewhat less than 5%.
Readers can also expect to find some typographical errors, which I will not dwell upon,
as well as some errors of other kinds. A few
examples: Sentences at the tops of pp. 82 and
84 are repeated from the preceding pages.
The title of the paper by Sir Thomas Browne
(p. 51) should be Pseudodoxia epidemica; or,
Enquiries into very many received tenents and
commonly presumed truths, instead of....very
many tenants and commonly presumed
truths. And on p. 303, David Randall-MacIver is listed as coauthor G.H. Thomson of
The Ancient Races of the Thebaid. The actual
coauthor was Arthur Thomson, who was a n
anatomist and who is also well known to
physiological anthropolgists for his classic
1923 paper with L.H.D. Buxton on the correlations between nasal index and climatic
variables. Incidentally, G.H. Thomson was a
noted psychologist with interests in I.&. testing, and who published, among other books,
The Factorial Analysis of Human Ability in
1939.
Although some slips like these do occur,
the book on balance is a valuable resource.
Those who are interested in the history of
our discipline or who teach the subject will
undoubtedly find it very useful, and for this
reason it merits a strong recommendation.
KENNETH
A. BENNETT
Department of Anthropology
Uniuersity of Wisconsin
Madison, Wisconsin
LITERATURE CITED
Thomson, GH (1939) The Factorial Analysis of Human
Ability. London: University of London Press.
Quantitative Biology applied the Synthetic
Theory of Evolution to paleoanthropology.
The Synthetic Theory, formulated in the
1940s by biologists like George Gaylord
Simpson (1944), urged the replacement of typological thinking by populational thinking
based on a synthesis of genetics and Darwinian evolution by natural selection. Its adoption in 1950 marks the beginning of the
“new” physical anthropology.
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