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 â€“ 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.
|Title of host publication
|Taxonomic Tapestries: The Threads of Evolutionary, Behavioural and Conservation Research
|Alison M. Behie and Marc F. Oxenham
|Place of Publication
|Published - 2015