American Anthropologist

Complexity in Biological Anthropology in 2011: Species, Reproduction, and Sociality



ABSTRACT  In 2011, the research of biological anthropologists contributed to the emergence of increasingly complex explanations of biological phenomena from previous, simpler interpretations. Major subjects of bioanthropological research in 2011 include new developments in understanding ancient hominin species and archaic Homo population histories; the physiological, neurological, and social effects of mating and reproducing in both humans and nonhuman primates; and the evolution of primate sociality and human cooperation. This review considers these topics of research from a perspective of complexity using conference proceedings, published articles, and social media. In closing, this article demonstrates the natural extension of our scholarly research to modern social networks and illustrates how they may act as a platform by which to increase intradisciplinary engagement and to highlight the complex, wide-reaching, and innovative research that our field contributes to society. [sociality, Denisovans, Australopithecus sediba, biological anthropology, annual review]