Darwin-L Message Log 1:21 (September 1993)

Academic Discussion on the History and Theory of the Historical Sciences

This is one message from the Archives of Darwin-L (1993–1997), a professional discussion group on the history and theory of the historical sciences.

Note: Additional publications on evolution and the historical sciences by the Darwin-L list owner are available on SSRN.

<1:21>From ARKEO4@FENNEL.WT.UWA.EDU.AU  Sun Sep  5 19:55:51 1993

Date: Mon, 6 Sep 1993 8:58:41 +0800 (SST)
Subject: RE: Geology and Language, and a Darwin-L Update
To: darwin-l@ukanaix.cc.ukans.edu

 Dave Rindos signing in from Perth, Western Australia.  I must add my
voice to the others who pointed out what a nice little tradition seems to
be developing here with the various "introduction" postings: it brings a
real human touch to the list, and helps reassure me that communication is
not going out into the ether.  Perhaps the list-owner might consider a
passing mention of it in the initial posting to new subscribers??

 The focus of all of my research (some would say my "compulsion") is the
development and application of a robust, phenotypically based, Darwinian
approach to cultural systems.  I have a written a bit on the topic (and
quite relevant to some of the other intro's) much of my theoretical
perspective has been developed in terms of the origin of agricultural
systems.  I also have been working a bit on the problem of the origin of
human cultural modes of transmission itself (the "culture problem"), with
an emphasis on the question "why should natural selection have favoured a
genetic system which brings about phenotypic (culturally based) modes for
the intergenerational tranmission of adaptive behaviours?" Right now, I
am involved in a series of papers on the initial colonization of Australia,
looking to the types of cultural systems which would favour colonization
(the "mode" question) and the time scales for such events (the "tempo"
business).  Here, I have the more or less final draft of MS which attempts
to apply the general model developed to the Clovis of the New World.  If
anybody out there is interested in commenting, please mail me and I would
love to send you a copy.  The model's general predictions (that a
"K-minimising" cultural tradition will first colonise continents) *seems*
to fit the Clovis pretty well.  The general model could also be sent to
those interested in the larger issue of r/K seletion in cultural systems
and the problems of initial colonisations.

 Until a few months ago, I was working as a Lecturer in Archaeology at
the University of Western Australia (don't even get me STARTED on THAT
topic), and at the moment I am in the final stages of getting a Research
Institute of the ground.  Western Australia is pretty much terra incognita
in terms of both ethnography and archaeology.  We have a land area some 1/3
the size of the continental US, with only a very small handfull of
archaeologists and anthropologists working in the state.  The first classes
in archaeology were offered here in the 1970's.  The archaeology department
at the University opened in 1989.  It lost Departmental status last year
and its total closure seems imminent.

 Even putting all of those problems aside, this region has fantastic
reseach potential in all the historical fields (European contact in the far
north of the state occurred in living memory) and I believe that we shall
have an internationally significant research programme going in the very
near future.  Anybody interested in doing work here (this is also VERY
relevant to some other intro's which spoke of human adaptation to desert
regions!) should feel free to contact me regarding the possibilities for
future research through the Institute.  {end of advertisement :{)  }

With best regards and high hopes for the future of this list,


*	 Dave Rindos				20 Herdsmans Parade	*
* 	 RINDOS@FENNEL.WT.UWA.EDU.AU		Wembley  6014 	*
* 	 Ph:  +61 9 387 6281  (GMT+8)		Western Australia	*
* 	 FAX: +61 9 380 1051  (USEDT+12)	AUSTRALIA		*

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