Department of Anthropology

Strength, tenacity, courage and unrelenting persistence.  

March is Women’s History Month, and all across our country, we are honoring women who have shaped America’s history by working together and showing their strength, tenacity and courage to not only overcome great obstacles, but also achieve at the highest level.   

Recent research has uncovered that up to 5 percent of the DNA of many modern humans originated from ancient interbreeding with Neanderthal populations. This raises the broader question of whether a species’ genetic makeup includes genes brought together through occasional episodes of hybridization. Are we an amalgamation of DNA from a variety of interbreeding species? Did such hybridization happen throughout the 7 million years of human evolution? “Occasionally,” said Anthony J.

How different are human brains compared to the brains of other primates such as chimpanzees, gorillas and monkeys? It’s one of many important questions that scientists have asked for years while pursuing a better understanding of human evolution.

Marilyn Norconk, Ph.D., a Professor Emerita of Anthropology in Kent State University’s College of Arts and Sciences, has been elected a Fellow of the American Association for the Advancement of Science (AAAS), the world’s largest general scientific society and publisher of the journal Science.

Dementia affects one-third of all people older than 65 years in the United States. The most common cause of dementia is Alzheimer’s disease, a progressive, irreversible brain disease that results in impaired cognitive functioning and other behavioral changes. Humans are considered uniquely susceptible to Alzheimer’s disease, potentially due to genetic differences, changes in brain structure and function during evolution, and an increased lifespan. 

Kent State University Distinguished Professor of Human Evolutionary Studies C. Owen Lovejoy, Ph.D., received the President's Medal from President Beverly Warren during the One University Commencement Ceremony on May 13 in Dix Stadium. The President’s Medal is the highest honor conferred by Kent State. It recognizes faculty and administrative staff who have made outstanding contributions to the advancement of Kent State through extraordinary and unique service.

Educator, pioneering scientist and visionary Owen Lovejoy receives the highest Kent State University honor.
 

Approximately 13,500 years after nomadic Clovis hunters crossed the frozen land bridge from Asia to North America, researchers are still asking questions and putting together clues as to how they not only survived in a new landscape with unique new challenges but adapted with stone tools and weapons to thrive for thousands of years. 

Kent State University students in the College of Arts and Sciences will get the opportunity to travel to Japan to do collaborative research in a world-class institute, specializing in primate biology, thanks to a recently signed memorandum of understanding with the Primate Research Institute of Kyoto University. By studying primates as a model for humans, the researchers hope to address a variety of topics, including evolutionary genetic analysis, Alzheimer’s disease and aggressive behavior.      

The Department of Pan-African Studies at Kent State University is pleased to announce its third biennial Africa and the Global Atlantic World Conference that will take place at Kent State University, on April 8, 2016. This year’s conference is themed “Cultures, Identities, and Racial Violence in the Pan-African World” and aims to explore new ways of studying the complex experiences of Africana people worldwide.

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