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Anthroplogical approaches to the study of infectious disease

Case study approach


Why do you use a case study approach, what is a major factor of it?

A case study is used when the research topic must be broadly covered.
It is based around ethnographic studies - anthropologists becoming part of a community in order to get a broad perspective of what it means to be a member of that community


What does a holistic approach focus on? What is a major source of information for a holistic study?

Focuses on biological, social/cultural, and environmental/ecological factors

Major source of information is archives, since ethnographic studies are not always possible


What does a comparative approach focus on?
What is a major source of information?

Synchronic (cross cultural) and diachronic (over time) studies of disease

Uses case study perspectives


What does an evolutionary approach look at?

The relationship between humans and microbes
The changing biology, social/cultural aspects of human populations


What is macroevolution?

Major evolutionary change at or above the level of species (speciation).


4 main factors of hunter gatherer lifestyle:

- foraging lifestyle
-had to be highly mobile
-populations typically smaller
-reliant on resources as they were found in nature


When was the beginning of domestication and sedentism?

At least 12.5 kya, beginning of the Neolithic revolution


True or false: at the beginning of the Neolithic revolution, all populations moved to domestication and sedentism from hunter-gathered lifestyles

False - some stayed as hunter-gatherer populations as it better suited their needs


The beginning of settlements and cultivation began with _______?

Early agriculturalists


Early agriculturalists had knowledge of:

Introduction to irrigation
Soil types
Plant requirements


Explain the early partnership between humans and wolves.

Humans produced waste
Wolves helped with hunting
Wolves guarded human populations


Positive and negative of agriculture

Agriculture produced a surplus of food
Increases insecurity and decline in quality of diet


Explain the insecurity and decline in diet that resulted from agriculture

Skeletal evidence for decline in diet quality
Insecurity because agriculturalists became specialized in certain plants - if the crop failed, they had lost the broader knowledge of alternate food sources that a forager might have had


Domestication and sedentism resulted in an increase or decrease of:
Population size

Increase in fertility AND population size


Breast feeding levels decreased due to the introduction of cows milk. How did this affect ovulation, and how can it be related to the overall population trends?

Ovulation returned faster - women were able to become pregnant faster
This supports the overall increase in local population size