Anthropology

If you call yourself a paleo diet aficionado, you probably eat a lot of bugs. As many as you can. Because finding enough food was the kind of struggle only dinosaurs can sympathize with - an ant diet is a struggle.


Chimpanzees are copycats but sometimes it is more than copying, it becomes new traditions particular to only one specific group of these primates, according to a paper in Animal Cognition

In 2010,
Edwin van Leeuwen of the Max Planck Institute for Psycholinguistics in The Netherlands
 noticed how a female chimp named Julie repeatedly put a stiff, strawlike blade of grass for no apparent reason in one or both of her ears. She left it there even when she was grooming, playing or resting in Zambia's Chimfunshi Wildlife Orphanage Trust sanctuary. On subsequent visits, van Leeuwen saw that other chimpanzees in her group had started to do the same.


In business, the saying goes there are good decisions, bad decisions and no decisions, and they are in that order of being problematic. This lacks common sense to some; how can doing the wrong thing be better than doing no thing? Companies who don't try and fail are not trying enough, that's why.

Most people would rather do something than nothing. Disney theme parks know this. You may may be in line for an hour but you are always moving. And then psychologists say we're just not comfortable in our own heads. Most people will do something, even the wrong thing, they write in Science.


How bad is western music? Chimps in a study published by the Journal of Experimental Psychology: Animal Learning and Cognition preferred silence - yet they liked music from Africa.

And music from India. What is the reason for that?

Music in the east is structured differently, notation is everything from Swara Kalana to Chôngganbo, but African music is not all that different. Why would chimps like it more? It may be tempo. The current findings say this may be the first to show that they display a preference for particular rhythmic patterns. If the authors aren't sure, none of the rest of the world can be.


Promiscuity means different things in different cultures, a one-size-fits-all approach rarely fits anyone, which is why western protesters do so poorly telling Africans how they need to change their behavioral ways. 

And in western society, female promiscuity is frowned on more than the male kind. Even in different countries it has different perceptions. The British show "Coupling" was hilarious to both Americans and British people but when a US network made an American version, it was a huge flop, even though it was taken almost verbatim from the British. The reason is because American audiences thought promiscuous British women were funny, but not American ones.

Neanderthals from Spain may have consumed more vegetables than previously thought, according to a dietary reconstruction.


A group of archaeologists, mathematicians, chemists and physicists, has shed new light on the use of mollusc shells as personal adornments by Bronze Age people. 

The research team used amino acid racemisation analysis, light microscopy, scanning electron microscopy and Raman spectroscopy to identify the raw materials used to make beads in a complex necklace discovered at an Early Bronze Age burial site at Great Cornard in Suffolk, UK.

They discovered that Bronze Age craftspeople used species like dog whelk and tusk shells, both of which were likely to have been sourced and worked locally, to fashion tiny disc-shaped beads in the necklace. 


Many people are familiar with the trophy wife stereotype - a wealthy successful man marries an attractive new spouse and she gets money. 

The presumption is that women only care about money while men only care about appearance. But it's selective observation, according to a sociologist, and they should know. In reality, for every Anna Nicole Smith, there are hundreds of examples where that isn't the case.

The stereotype  reinforces sexist stereotypes and trivializes women's careers. Ironically, it is most often perpetuated by women 


Fermentation Came First


Evidence mounts almost daily that beer started humans on the path to civilization even before the invention of agriculture some twelve thousand years ago. A paper in Evolutionary Anthropology says that, based on tests of artifacts, cereal grains were collected (sometimes from areas as far as sixty miles away) “for the purposes of brewing beer” to be used in feasts, which then “led to domestication...”

Expectant mothers, a paper by social science scholars suggests that having an ultrasound to find out your child's gender may be giving subtle sociology clues about your views on proper gender roles and social psychology.