Changes in human tooth-size and shape with the Neolithic transition in Indo-Malaysia

    Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingChapter


    The task of this contribution is to rigorously test whether biological adaptations to agriculture, and the use of pottery for cooking, could explain late Holocene craniodental change in Indo-Malaysia – the part of Southeast Asia where my specialisation lies. There are now enough well-dated burial series from Sulawesi, Borneo, Java and Malaya to test two main predictions of the Neolithic tooth-size reduction model: 1. Indo-Malaysian tooth-size should show continual reduction over time, not only between the pre-Neolithic and the Neolithic, but also continuing into the Early Metal Phase (EMP) and modern times; 2. Pre-Neolithic and late Holocene Indo-Malaysians should have similar tooth shape. Depending on the obtained results, the discussion will also briefly examine the efficacy of tooth-size reduction as a driver for late Holocene change in Indo-Malaysian cranial shape, and review recent insights from human genetic and osteological comparisons.
    Original languageEnglish
    Title of host publicationTaxonomic Tapestries: The Threads of Evolutionary, Behavioural and Conservation Research
    Editors Alison M. Behie and Marc F. Oxenham
    Place of PublicationCanberra, Australia
    PublisherANU Press
    ISBN (Print)9781925022360
    Publication statusPublished - 2015


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