HOT (Human Origins Today) Topic - From foraging to farming: how our skeletons changed [ONLINE]
Habiba Chirchir is a biological anthropologist at Marshall University and a research associate with the Human Origins Program at the National Museum of Natural History. After discovering humans had lower bone density than other primates, she set out to find out why by working with a team of researchers to examine human fossils in both the recent and distant past. Her new conclusion was surprising: it all started when humans shifted from foraging and hunting to growing food and raising livestock — a fairly recent phenomenon in human prehistory.
Given our sedentary lifestyles — and with food often just a click away — we need to protect our bones more than ever. Can we learn to do this by understanding our ancestors’ lifestyles? Chirchir shared her work and the new possibilities that may have contributed to lighter skeletons in humans. The webinar was moderated by Briana Pobiner, paleoanthropologist and educator at Smithsonian’s National Museum of Natural History.
This Zoom webinar with Habiba Chirchir aired August 19, 2020, as part of the HOT (Human Origins Today) Topic online program series. Watch a recording here.