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Race?: Debunking a Scientific Myth

3.33 of 5 stars 3.33  ·  rating details  ·  9 ratings  ·  4 reviews
Race has provided the rationale and excuse for some of the worst atrocities in human history. Yet, according to many biologists, physical anthropologists, and geneticists, there is no valid scientific justification for the concept of race.
To be more precise, although there is clearly some physical basis for the variations that underlie perceptions of race, clear boundarie
Hardcover, 256 pages
Published September 1st 2011 by Texas A&M University Press
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Somehow this book just misses, lacking impact and not making its case forcefully enough. The writing style isn't very engaging, though it tries to be. Perhaps noticing a few factual errors (like the Kennewick Man being from Oregon - a Washington resident would catch that!) makes me suspicious, since I feel I'm only going to find a few of the errors as I don't know the subject well. There is some useful cautionary information about the use of genetics for ancestry searches, in forensics and in me ...more
These guys write very well for a general audience, but the book was less than completely satisfying to me (full disclosure: I am a professional biological anthropologist who has also written about race). Although purportedly about race, too much of this book is a rehash of basic background material on biological evolution and human evolution (Tattersall's area): stuff that is much better covered in many other places. A surprising minority of the material covered in this book speaks directly to t ...more
Roy Kenagy
Feb 29, 2012 Roy Kenagy marked it as to-read
Review in American Scientist:

"a beautifully presented book, elegantly reasoned and skillfully written. Tattersall, a physical anthropologist, and DeSalle, a geneticist, are both senior scholars at the American Museum of Natural History. Their aim is to explain human diversity in terms of human evolution and dispersal since our ancestors walked out of Africa some 100,000 years ago. The patterns of diversity, they write, reflect the processes of divergence and reintegration
Authors seem to miss some points by giving to much information and details on how to make or conduct a epidemiological and/or sociological study..

I wish they concentrated more on mtDNA and Y chr results...the last chapter was the one i was looking for.. cause it explains in much clearer way SNPs and GWAS and the true genetic analyses
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“In all of these papers, we find the key words admixture and expansion used over and over again. In other words, no matter how much Homo sapiens explores and moves about, we like to mate with whatever other people we meet up with.” 1 likes
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