Academic journal article Canadian Journal of Sociology

Alan Goodman, Deborah Heath, and M. Susan Lindee, Eds., Genetic Nature/ Culture

Academic journal article Canadian Journal of Sociology

Alan Goodman, Deborah Heath, and M. Susan Lindee, Eds., Genetic Nature/ Culture

Article excerpt

Alan Goodman, Deborah Heath, and M. Susan Lindee, eds., Genetic Nature/ Culture, University of California Press, 2003, 311pp.

This volume originated in a Wenner-Glen Foundation international symposium devoted to the theme of the inseparability of genetic, environmental, and culture analysis in anthropology. Each of the fourteen essays argues in one way or another that genetics plays some role in virtually any human social behavior, even though that behavior cannot be simply reduced to a genetic based level of analysis. Although many of the topics covered are of primary interest to what we might have labeled earlier as physical anthropology, sociologists will also find many of these essays enlightening. They all demonstrate the multiple layered analysis that should be the hallmark of all good social science after the recent revolutions in genetics. To claim, as so many sociologists do, that there is some kind of definitive barrier between nature and culture for the human species is to make sociology more and more marginal both to our co-disciplines, and to the wider intellectual enterprise of our contemporary world. …

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