Previous attempts to study the 1918-1919 flu in three small communities in central Manitoba have used both three-community population-based and single-community agent-based models. These studies identified critical factors influencing epidemic spread, but they also left important questions unanswered. The objective of this project was to design a more realistic agent-based model that would overcome limitations of earlier models and provide new insights into these outstanding questions.
The new model extends the previous agent-based model to three communities so that results can be compared to those from the population-based model. Sensitivity testing was conducted, and the new model was used to investigate the influence of seasonal settlement and mobility patterns, the geographic heterogeneity of the observed 1918-1919 epidemic in Manitoba, and other questions addressed previously.
Results confirm outcomes from the population-based model that suggest that (a) social organization and mobility strongly influence the timing and severity of epidemics and (b) the impact of the epidemic would have been greater if it had arrived in the summer rather than the winter. New insights from the model suggest that the observed heterogeneity among communities in epidemic impact was not unusual and would have been the expected outcome given settlement structure and levels of interaction among communities.
Application of an agent-based computer simulation has helped to better explain observed patterns of spread of the 1918-1919 flu epidemic in central Manitoba. Contrasts between agent-based and population-based models illustrate the advantages of agent-based models for the study of small populations.
The paper presents a snapshot of the city-village connections in the city of Yakutsk and an anthropological account of the dynamics of the relationship between the city and villages around it. Demographic changes that started in the 1980s, prompted by a decline in agriculture, initiated an exodus of the rural population from the countryside into the city of Yakutsk. This paper explores the migration dynamics of the rural population to the city. Two conflicting aspects of the relationship between the city and village are the focus of this paper: treating village people as close kin and as outsiders. I examine the image of ulusnik [a villager] and consider rationales behind the stigma attached to it and a social role of the Other which is imposed on the people from the countryside.
Russia's indigenous peoples have been struggling with economic, environmental, and socio-cultural dislocation since the fall of the Soviet Union in 1991. In northern rural areas, the end of the Soviet Union most often meant the end of agro-industrial state farm operations that employed and fed surrounding rural populations. Most communities adapted to this loss by reinstating some form of pre-Soviet household-level food production based on hunting, fishing, and/or herding. However, mass media, globalization, and modernity challenge the intergenerational knowledge exchange that grounds subsistence practices. Parts of the circumpolar north have been relatively successful in valuing and integrating elder knowledge within their communities. This has not been the case in Russia. This article presents results of an elder knowledge project in northeast Siberia, Russia that shows how rural communities can both document and use elder knowledge to bolster local definitions of sustainability and, at the same time, initiate new modes of communication between village youth and elders.
The Kachemak tradition was established by ca. 3000 B.P. in Kachemak Bay. Probably somewhat later a variant termed Riverine Kachemak, with a population adapted to salmon and terrestrial resources, appeared on the northern Kenai Peninsula. The Kachemak tradition people seem to have abandoned Kachemak Bay by ca. 1400 B.P. Seven of 12 available Kachemak tradition dates predate 1400 B.P. even at two sigma. Scattered younger dates are thus suspect outliers. The end of Riverine Kachemak tradition has been placed at ca. 1000 B.P., at which time the population was supposedly replaced by in-migrating groups ancestral to the Dena'ina Athapaskans. Close examination of the numerous available radiocarbon dates shows that most Riverine Kachemak dates cluster in the early centuries of the First Millennium A.D. and most Dena'ina dates substantially postdate 1000 A.D. Probably the Riverine Kachemak and Dena'ina peoples never met on the Kenai River. However, the correspondence in date ranges between Kachemak Bay and Riverine Kachemak is striking, suggesting their fates were linked. Both traditions collapsed by 1400-1500 B.P. The causes are probably multiple but do not include cultural replacement.
A shift from nomadic foraging to sedentary agriculture was a major turning point in human evolutionary history, increasing our population size and eventually leading to the development of modern societies. We however lack understanding of the changes in life histories that contributed to the increased population growth rate of agriculturalists, because comparable individual-based reproductive records of sympatric populations of agriculturalists and foragers are rarely found. Here, we compared key life-history traits and population growth rate using comprehensive data from the seventieth to nineteenth century Northern Finland: indigenous Sami were nomadic hunter-fishers and reindeer herders, whereas sympatric agricultural Finns relied predominantly on animal husbandry. We found that agriculture-based families had higher lifetime fecundity, faster birth spacing and lower maternal mortality. Furthermore, agricultural Finns had 6.2% higher annual population growth rate than traditional Sami, which was accounted by differences between the subsistence modes in age-specific fecundity but not in mortality. Our results provide, to our knowledge, the most detailed demonstration yet of the demographic changes and evolutionary benefits that resulted from agricultural revolution.
Cites: Am J Phys Anthropol. 1996 Feb;99(2):259-748967327
Last decades the phenomenon of ageing population at the expense of reduction of birth rate and continuous growth of life expectancy is observed and moreover the life expectancy increase has almost linear character. In our opinion, this growth will stop the next years and there will be a considerable reduction of life expectancy. Roughly it should occur after 2010 year when the persons born in second half of the XXth century, i.e. after 1950 year, will start to enter advanced age. The reason of this drama consist in our opinion in catastrophic deterioration of primary health at persons born in second half of XXth century owing to action of "stop-evolution" factors and inhabitancy crisis. "Primary health" as definition in this text means combination of congenital predisposition to diseases (pathogenicity) with congenital possibility to autorecovery (sanogenicity). So the quality of primary health depends on features of the person genome and features of the person antenatal period of life including the delivery. Among factors of "stop-evolution" breaking natural selection consequently of sharp decrease in number of birth and fertility in population and as consequence worsening quality of congenital sanogenicity we consider first of all social factors. Among factors operating due to crisis of an inhabitancy and as consequence increase of congenital pathogenicity we consider anthropogenic factors (success of medicine, changes of food, technogenic factors). The analysis of own data of diabetic patients born during various periods of the XXth century (before 1908, in 1909-1923, 1924-1938, 1939-1953 yrs) has demonstrated the essential reduction of number of long-livers in a family (30,7; 35,0; 25,4; 27,8% accordingly), and on the other hand the sharp increase in frequency of cases of a family diabetes during the century (20,0; 5,9; 36,8; 64,7% accordingly). Thus, the action of some factors described by us has been already shown in first half of XXth century. To overcome the given "gerontology crisis" apparently, the interdisciplinary approach including joint researches with the subsequent development of recommendations, with participation not only gerontologists/geriatrists, but also pediatrists, andrologists/gynecologists, endocrinologists, genetics, ecologists and sociologists is necessary.
The existing corpus of data on radiocarbon dates for Holocene sites in Northeastern Siberia was used as proxy to reconstruct the chronology of human occupation of the region. The problem of reservoir age correction in the Bering Sea region complicated this task and this issue needs to be solved in order to obtain more reliable age determinations for coastal archaeological sites. Using a chronology built after excluding the questionable dates from the database, the major patterns of human population dynamics and their possible correlation with climatic fluctuations were examined. No direct relationship appears to exist between these two processes. Additional archaeological and paleo environmental work needs to be carried out in this region of the North.