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On Fertile Ground: A Natural History of Human Reproduction [Englisch] [Gebundene Ausgabe]

Peter T. Ellison


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Kurzbeschreibung

30. März 2001
Reproduction is among the most basic of human biological functions, both for our distant ancestors and for ourselves, whether we live on the plains of Africa or in North American suburbs. Our reproductive biology unites us as a species, but it has also been an important engine of our evolution. In the way our bodies function today we can see both the imprint of our formative past and implications for our future. It is the infinitely subtle and endlessly dramatic story of human reproduction and its evolutionary context that Peter T. Ellison tells in this text. Ranging from the latest achievements of modern fertility clinics to the lives of subsistence farmers in the rain forests of Africa, this book offers both a broad and a minutely detailed exploration of human reproduction. Ellison combines the perspectives of anthropology, stressing the range and variation of human experience; ecology, sensitive to the two-way interactions between humans and their environments; and evolutionary biology, emphasizing a functional understanding of human reproductive biology and its role in our evolutionary history. Whether contrasting female athletes missing their periods and male athletes using anabolic steroids with Polish farm women and hunter-gatherers in Paraguay, or exploring the intricate choreography of an implanting embryo or of a nursing mother and her child, this book advances a rich explanation of the mechanisms by which we reproduce and the evolutionary forces behind their design.

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"A splendid synthesis by one of the pioneers in the study of the evolution of the human reproductive system. Ellison provides a readable, marvelously informative account of the physiology of reproduction as it relates to women's lives." - Sara Blaffer Hrdy, author of Mother Nature"

Synopsis

Reproduction is among the most basic of human biological functions, both for our distant ancestors and for ourselves, whether we live on the plains of Africa or in North American suburbs. Our reproductive biology unites us as a species, but it has also been an important engine of our evolution. In the way our bodies function today we can see both the imprint of our formative past and implications for our future. It is the infinitely subtle and endlessly dramatic story of human reproduction and its evolutionary context that Peter T. Ellison tells in this text. Ranging from the latest achievements of modern fertility clinics to the lives of subsistence farmers in the rain forests of Africa, this book offers both a broad and a minutely detailed exploration of human reproduction. Ellison combines the perspectives of anthropology, stressing the range and variation of human experience; ecology, sensitive to the two-way interactions between humans and their environments; and evolutionary biology, emphasizing a functional understanding of human reproductive biology and its role in our evolutionary history.

Whether contrasting female athletes missing their periods and male athletes using anabolic steroids with Polish farm women and hunter-gatherers in Paraguay, or exploring the intricate choreography of an implanting embryo or of a nursing mother and her child, this book advances a rich explanation of the mechanisms by which we reproduce and the evolutionary forces behind their design.


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Amazon.com: 4.0 von 5 Sternen  9 Rezensionen
8 von 8 Kunden fanden die folgende Rezension hilfreich
5.0 von 5 Sternen Absolutely Fascinating! 1. September 2001
Von W. James D. Easton - Veröffentlicht auf Amazon.com
Format:Gebundene Ausgabe|Verifizierter Kauf
The is a beautifully crafted and engrossing description of human reproductive physiology and sociology. The non-specialist reader will learn more than he or she ever though possible about the nature of being a human being -- and be continually fascinated along the journey. Allan Watts once complained that no "Owner's Manuals" were issued to human beings. Ellison has certainly made a wonderful contribution to one.
10 von 12 Kunden fanden die folgende Rezension hilfreich
5.0 von 5 Sternen A ground breaking contribution to human evolutionary biology 10. Juni 2001
Von Richard Bribiescas - Veröffentlicht auf Amazon.com
Format:Gebundene Ausgabe
Professor Ellison has written the definitive book on the physiology and life history of a central pillar of human evolution; reproduction. Moreover, this book is unique in it's elegance and treatment of human reproduction. It melds three often elusive topics that beg to be integrated, evolutionary theory, life history theory, and physiology. As a biological anthropologist with expertise in evolutionary and life history theory, endocrinology, and field methods, Professor Ellison has skillfully woven these perspectives into a concise discussion of how human reproductive physiology responds to environmental challenges. Anthropologists and physiologists have often been at odds in explaining variation in human fertility resulting in frustrating discussions involving the false dichotomy between genes and environment. Ellison rejects these simplistic notions and masterfully outlines how human reproduction consists of an interplay between the genotype and environment, resulting in adaptations that involve graded physiologic responses to ecological challenges such as caloric deficiencies and energetic expenditure. Indeed, the ability of human reproductive physiology to respond to environmental challenges seems to have been a key adaptation during human evolution. 'On Fertile Ground' is the product of years of field and laboratory research by both Ellison and his colleagues, the ramifications of which include a reexamination of human physiological variation, the constraints and selection pressures that shaped human evolution, as well as a fresh perspective on the etiology of contemporary health issues such as breast cancer. The writing is superb and the illustrations are outstanding in their detail and clarity. 'On Fertile Ground' is an extremely valuable and important contribution to contemporary biological anthropology and evolutionary biology as a whole. Indeed, 'On Fertile Ground' will be required reading for undergraduate and graduate students studying reproductive ecology in the biological anthropology program at Yale University. Ellison's work is an extraordinary achievement!
2 von 2 Kunden fanden die folgende Rezension hilfreich
2.0 von 5 Sternen Review is specific to the KINDLE EDITION not the quality of the author's writing. 3. September 2013
Von Sugar Plum - Veröffentlicht auf Amazon.com
Format:Kindle Edition|Verifizierter Kauf
Normally I feel that book reviews should be about the content of the actual book but in this case I have no other way to warn Kindle users what they'll be getting if they purchase the Kindle edition of this text. Textbooks that have been properly formatted and created for Kindle look just like the physical book itself, that is not the case here.

This is a very poor Kindle edition textbook, some may read this for leisure but this is typically a textbook so page numbers are of vital importance. The KINDLE EDITION OF THIS TEXT COMLETELY LACKS PAGE NUMBERS, just has the locations, which do not relate to anything outside of Amazon and are very unhelpful when trying to correspond to the page numbers listed in a syllabus. Also, NONE OF THE IMAGES FROM THE PHYSICAL TEXT ARE IN THE KINDLE VERSION, why? To have included the images in the physical text, the author clearly felt them to be significant.

I have several textbooks, not novels, but textbooks on my Kindle that I purchased in the past that are wonderful examples of what you should expect when purchasing a textbook in Kindle edition; every image is there for you to see just as in the physical text and every page corresponds directly to the physical text (with numbers on each page). So to purchase this text in Kindle edition and see the vast difference was extremely disappointing and frustrating and that's on Amazon because if its not at the standard it should be, then it should not be for sale. The frustration of having no page numbers and the omission of all of the images that appear in the physical text completely outweighs the convenience of having this text on your Kindle. This is not a novel, a textbook needs to mimic the physical text in its entirety.

For those of you that are students specifically (but anyone in general) who enjoy being able to get rid of physical textbooks and have it readily available on your Kindle, just BE AWARE, purchase with caution and forewarning that you may be better off just going to your bookstore and renting it; it's cheaper to rent it anyway! Don't pay more money for a subpar product. If you take a chance and purchase the Kindle edition and are unhappy just remember, you have 7 days to return it and get your money back.
5 von 7 Kunden fanden die folgende Rezension hilfreich
5.0 von 5 Sternen A ground breaking contribution to human evolutionary biology 10. Juni 2001
Von Richard Bribiescas - Veröffentlicht auf Amazon.com
Format:Gebundene Ausgabe
Professor Ellison has written the definitive book on the physiology and life history of a central pillar of human evolution; reproduction. Moreover, this book is unique in it's elegance and treatment of human reproduction. It melds three often elusive topics that beg to be integrated, evolutionary theory, life history theory, and physiology. As a biological anthropologist with expertise in evolutionary and life history theory, endocrinology, and field methods, Professor Ellison has skillfully woven these perspectives into a concise discussion of how human reproductive physiology responds to environmental challenges. Anthropologists and physiologists have often been at odds in explaining variation in human fertility resulting in frustrating discussions that typify the false dichotomy between genes and environment. Ellison avoids these potential pitfalls and masterfully presents a fresh and quantitatively compelling perspective that describes the evolution of human reproduction as an interplay between the genotype and environment, resulting in adaptations that involve graded physiologic responses to ecological challenges such as caloric deficiencies and energetic expenditure. Indeed, the ability of human reproductive physiology to respond to environmental challenges seems to have been a key adaptation during human evolution. 'On Fertile Ground' is the product of years of field and laboratory investigation by both Ellison and his colleagues. The ramifications of this research include both the reexamination of human physiological variation as well as the constraints and selection pressures that shaped human evolution. In addition, this research provides a fresh perspective on the etiology of contemporary health issues such as steroid sensitive cancers. The writing is superb and the illustrations are outstanding in their detail and clarity. 'On Fertile Ground' is an extremely valuable and important contribution to contemporary biological anthropology and evolutionary biology as a whole. Indeed, 'On Fertile Ground' will be required reading for undergraduate and graduate students studying reproductive ecology in the biological anthropology program at Yale University. Ellison's work is an extraordinary achievement!
5.0 von 5 Sternen Well written! 10. Februar 2014
Von mkh2692 - Veröffentlicht auf Amazon.com
Format:Taschenbuch|Verifizierter Kauf
I had to get this book as a text for one of my university courses. This book is well written, clear, and interesting. It gives a great perspective on all of the intricacies of reproduction.
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