Fossils, Teeth, and Sex: New Perspectives on Human Evolution

By Charles E. Oxnard | Go to book overview

Acknowledgements

As I have explained this book naturally follows from the earlier ones. But it also depends upon a number of other factors.

A series of speaking invitations have been especially important in its development. These include three keynote lectures that I have given to the most recent biennial meetings of the Chinese Medical Association (Anatomy Section) at the invitation of Professor Wu Rukang. They also include two series of lectures on the evolution of hominids and hominoids, first in the Department of Anatomy, Hong Kong University, under successive heads, Professors Peter Lisowski and Brian Weatherhead, and second in the Department of Anatomy, St Andrews University, Scotland, under the headship of Professor David Brynmor Thomas. And they include, finally and most recently, the first Distinguished Faculty Lecture in the Graduate School at the University of Southern California.

These ideas also owe much of their development to a series of invited papers that have been part of the thinking process. These include a contribution entitled 'Hominoids and Hominids, Lineages and Radiations' published in the volume Past Present and Future of Hominid Evolution edited by Professor Philip Tobias, and arising from the Taung Diamond Jubilee International Scientific Symposium. They also include a chapter entitled 'Comparative Anatomy of the Primates: Old and New' in Comparative Primate Biology, Volume I: Systematics, Evolution and Anatomy edited by Professor Daris R. Swindler. And they include, most recently, a chapter entitled 'Evolutionary Radiations in Humans and Great Apes: Some Quantitative Evidence' in Perspectives in Primate Biology, edited by Professors P. K. Seth and S. Seth.

Because I am not myself a statistician, I must especially acknowledge the help and collaboration that I have received from a number of statisticians over the years who have especial expertise in this area (Professors Michael Healy, Roger Flinn, Peter Neeley, Paul Meier, David Wallace and William Kruskal). In addition to such personal discussion and help in the statistical area, I have also felt it most important to 'put my head in the lion's mouth' by accepting every invitation to present these studies in departments of statistics. In this regard, the Department of Statistics at the University of Chicago has been especially important through its invitations to me over the years. In more recent times, the Department of Statistics and its head, Professor John Aitchison of the University of Hong Kong, and the Department of Statistics and its head, Professor Michael Healy of the London School of Hygiene and Tropical Medicine, have likewise provided critical comment. Most recently of all have been invitations to speak, by mathematicians Professors Michael Waterman and Robert Guralnick, both at the University of Southern California, and by statistician Professor Paul Sampson of the University of Washington (who invited me to participate in a symposium on morphometrics at the joint meeting of the Institute of Mathematical Statistics and the Biometric Society at Utah State University, Logan, in 1984).

Another kind of lecture participation has also been especially helpful. Those undergraduate, graduate, and medical students and faculty at the Universities of Chicago and Southern California who have suffered my lectures on The Analysis of Biological Form and Pattern, The Order of the Primates, Animal Mechanics, and The Human Place in Primate Evolution have contributed to this book in a manner that continually emphasizes to me the very close relationship and interaction that there is between teaching and research. These participations have been further augmented by invitations from individuals such as Professors Michael Waterman (in a course on Evolutionary Biology, Department of Biological Sciences), Joan Walker (in courses on Biomechanics in the Department of Physical Therapy), Suzanne Engler (in a course on An Introduction to Human Evolution, Department of Anthropology) and Walter Williams in a course on the study of women and men in society, all at the University of Southern California. These have allowed me to make contributions to teaching courses that emphasized new research results and directions as well as the broad general picture.

This interplay between research and teaching has, in recent years, been central in my enjoyment of academic life. In particular, the teaching has

-xiii-

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