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AMERICAN JOURNAL OF PHYSICAL ANTHROPOLOGY 135:117–120 (2008) Book Reviews BIGFOOT EXPOSED: AN ANTHROPOLOGIST EXAMINES AMERICA’S ENDURING LEGEND. By David J. Daegling. Walnut Creek, CA: AltaMira Press. 2005. 275 pp. ISBN 0-7591-0539-1. $24.95 (paper). SASQUATCH: LEGEND MEETS SCIENCE. By Jeff Meldrum. New York: Tom Doherty. 2006. 299 pp. ISBN 0-565-31216-6. $27.95 (hardcover). It’s hard to demonstrate that something doesn’t exist. Some philosophers insist that it can’t be done. Ludwig Wittgenstein said as much in a lecture once, whereupon Bertrand Russell tried to persuade him that there was no hippopotamus in the room. ‘‘I looked under all the desks without ﬁnding one,’’ complained Russell, ‘‘but he remained unconvinced’’ (B. Russell  Ludwig Wittgenstein. Mind n.s. 60: 297–98). Is there a three-meter-tall species of apelike biped—the sasquatch or Bigfoot—lurking in the forests of the Paciﬁc Northwest? Nobody has ever fetched home a cadaver or a skeleton or even a tooth of a sasquatch. But unlike Russell’s hippopotamus, the sasquatch leaves tangible traces behind in the form of footprints, sitzmarks, and movie ﬁlm. In these two books for a general audience, Jeff Meldrum and David Daegling lay out their respective cases for and against accepting those traces as evidence of an undiscovered giant primate in the northern woods. Both authors agree on two points: a lot of Bigfoot traces have been found and some of them are frauds. Daegling wants to persuade us that they are all fraudulent and that Bigfoot is a socially constructed myth given bogus substance by hallucinations and hoaxes. He has accordingly written a book centered on cultural themes and the acts and motives of people. Meldrum wants to convince us that most of the footprints, photos, and so on are authentic, and so he has written a book centered on biology and forensics. As a result, most physical anthropologists will probably be more interested in Meldrum’s subject matter. But I suspect most of us will be more swayed by Daegling’s arguments. M; eldrum begins with the story of his own sasquatch encounters, during which fellow enthusiasts took him into the back country to witness fresh tracks, strange sounds in the night, and rocks hurled from the bushes by unseen creatures. Bigfoot or pulled leg? Meldrum is sensitive to both possibilities, but he leans heavily toward the former. To get the issue of fraud out of the way, he devotes an early chapter to two self-confessed hoaxers: Rant Mullens, who started faking Bigfoot prints as a young forest ranger back in 1928, and Ray Wallace, who ran the construction site where 14-inch footprints were found in 1958, leading to the coining of the name Bigfoot. Meldrum shows that at least some of the ersatz footprints planted by these two were transparently phony and that some other tracks are less easily dismissed as artifacts. He retells the tales of big hairy bipeds in the woods told by Native Americans and early white settlers, and notes the recent discoveries of other large mammals that had escaped the attention of scientists. Most of Meldrum’s book is devoted to a forensic examination of the supposed evidence for the reality of Bigfoot. This evidence consists mainly of casts of footC 2007 V WILEY-LISS, INC. prints, but also includes prints of other parts of the body, some blurry photographs, and a few home movies, culminating in the celebrated Patterson–Gimlin ﬁlm that shows a furry, heavyset humanoid with a gorilla-like head walking off into the bushes. Meldrum is convinced that most of this evidence is legitimate. His argument runs something like this: most of the supposed sasquatch traces could not have been left by humans, bears, elk, or other known animals. At least some of the footprints show anatomical features (such as dermatoglyphic ridges and a chimpanzee-like midtarsal break) that are too subtle and technical to have been generated by inexpert lay pranksters. Likewise, the creature in the Patterson–Gimlin ﬁlm is too apelike in its body proportions and locomotion, and too realistic in its surface anatomy, to be a man wearing an ape costume. Meldrum concludes from all this that it is reasonable to think that the sasquatch may be a real animal and that searching for it is a respectable scientiﬁc enterprise. Meldrum (like the late Grover Krantz) suspects that the sasquatch is a descendant of the horse-sized Miocene primate Gigantopithecus, which survived into the Pleistocene in Southeast Asia and might have entered North America during a Pleistocene interglacial. The trouble with this account is that Gigantopithecus was not a hominin and maybe not even a crown-group hominoid; yet the physical evidence implies that today’s Bigfoot is an upright biped with buttocks and a long, stout, permanently adducted hallux. These are hominin autapomorphies, not found in other mammals or other bipeds. It seems unlikely that Gigantopithecus would have evolved these uniquely hominin traits in parallel. If Bigfoot exists, it is surely a hominin. And because the Bigfoot in the Patterson–Gimlin ﬁlm walks with ﬂexed knees, like a bipedal chimpanzee, the logical conclusion from all this is that it is either a non-Homo hominin—a surviving australopithecine—or else a costumed human trying to walk like a bipedal chimpanzee. Taking the physical evidence at face value thus suggests that Pleistocene australopithecines managed to outrace Homo to the New World. Maybe so. But in the absence of a sasquatch specimen or an australopithecine fossil anywhere outside of Africa, that proposition is going to be a hard sell. More tightly organized and closely reasoned than Meldrum’s book, Daegling’s attack on the Bigfoot legend is for the most part a model of scrupulous scientiﬁc argument. Daegling examines the evidence bearing on the natural history of the sasquatch and concludes that there is no theoretical reason why such a creature could not exist and make a living in the forests of the American Northwest. Skeptics who deny the reality of Bigfoot are therefore obliged to explain away all the purported sightings and traces. Daegling accordingly devotes most of his book to showing that the sightings could have been mistaken and that the traces could have been misinterpreted or faked. His dissection of the spoors, traces, and photos of Bigfoot examines the supposed evidence in its social and human context, and reveals a number of discreditable facts that Meldrum omits or glosses over. These facts include the sorry history of the fraudulent ‘‘Homo pongoides’’ cadaver published by the eminent cryptozoologist Bernard Heuvelmans; the ﬁnancial shenanigans surrounding the ‘‘Cripplefoot’’ prints (of a 118 BOOK REVIEWS deformed sasquatch foot) found at Bossburg, Washington; and the widespread conviction among many leading Bigfoot advocates that the late Paul Freeman (the most successful of all sasquatch hunters and one of Meldrum’s prime sources) was faking his traces and photos. Daegling recounts the experimental inquiry that he and Dan Schmitt undertook on the Patterson–Gimlin ﬁlm, which led them to conclude that it could easily have been just a dressed-up human. But they could not rule out the possibility that it might have been something else. Sasquatch sightings and footprints have been reported from every state in the country except Rhode Island. This distribution is more suggestive of a myth than of a mammal. And yet Meldrum apparently takes it seriously. Describing the dermatoglyphics on some convincing sasquatch footprints, he notes in passing that they were found in Georgia. But he doesn’t follow out the implications of that fact, which implies a pan-continental range for this elusive giant primate. Daegling narrates the journalistic, social, and economic history of another East Coast Bigfoot manifestation, the Bardin Booger from his own state of Florida. This apelike mythic creature serves the citizens of Putnam County as a sort of kachina—at once a tourist attraction, a bogeyman, and a ritual clown that performs at local events and offers up political commentary in the newspapers. For Daegling, the fundamental question is this: why do people report encounters with an animal that doesn’t exist? He proposes that Americans see sasquatches where there are none because Bigfoot functions in our culture as an ‘‘ecomessiah,’’ a tutelary deity of the vanishing domain of wild nature. But as Daegling knows, hairy, bestial bipeds living in the wilderness are archetypal myths found all over the world. They recur throughout the history of Western art and literature (J.B. Friedman, The Monstrous Races in Medieval Art and Thought ). The ancient Greeks knew of them as gorillai (a word later applied to the real African ape), medieval Englishmen called them wodewoses, and we call them sasquatches. To me, the wide and deep distribution of the archetype of the Wild Man of the Woods suggests that something more fundamental is going on here. Perhaps, like Swift’s Yahoos, the Wild Man is a kind of unscientiﬁc refraction of the facts of primatology: a signal to us and our children that without our culture and traditions, humans would be little more than a species of big, bipedal monkey. For Daegling and most other physical anthropologists, the sasquatch is an amusing and intriguing legend, which deserves to be neither dismissed out of hand nor PRIMATES AND PHILOSOPHERS: HOW MORALITY EVOLVED. By Frans de Waal. Edited by Stephen Macedo and Josiah Ober. Princeton, NJ: Princeton University Press. 2006 209 pp. ISBN 0-691-12447-7. $22.95 (hardcover). One would typically expect that the evolution of morality in humans and nonhuman primates is a line of inquiry beyond the bounds of science and best suited to philosophical debate. And yet Frans de Waal in Primates and Philosophers: How Morality Evolved succeeds in placing the topic ﬁrmly within the realm of scientiﬁc taken very seriously. If somebody brings in a specimen, we will all be eager to look at it; but until then, we have little interest in spending our lives sifting through a mountain of balderdash to see if it contains any nuggets of truth. This attitude drives Meldrum crazy. Throughout his book, he complains indignantly about his lazy colleagues who ‘‘are content to remain aloof [and] . . . passively challenge, ‘Show me the body’ ’’ (p. 44). But what else are we supposed to do? Many of the supposed Bigfoot traces are clearly hoaxes. Others might be genuine, but none of them is beyond the scope of ingenious trickery. The only way to settle the issue is to show us a specimen. Nothing less will do, because footprints, photos, and video can always be faked to whatever degree of precision it takes to gull the experts. As Daegling observes, experts think they are too expert to be fooled, and so they are easy to fool. This is especially true if the pranksters are themselves experts or are clever enough to pick up some expertise from the literature. Remember Piltdown? What Meldrum chieﬂy wants, I think, is not that we accept the reality of Bigfoot or compete in the search for the type specimen, but that we honor his own commitment to that search as a legitimate scientiﬁc enterprise. I think we owe him that. If the chances that Bigfoot is real are (say) 10,000 to 1 against, having one physical anthropologist devoting half his life to searching for it is roughly an appropriate allocation of our profession’s resources. Meldrum deserves to be criticized dispassionately and offered sincere advice, and not to be covered in the sort of scorn and abuse that has been hurled in his direction by some of his colleagues at Idaho State (Chronicle of Higher Education, August 4, 2006, A44). For my part, I’m happy to see him out there in the North Woods on the trail of the sasquatch. I hope he ﬁnds one. But I feel mortally certain that he won’t, and that he is wasting his professional life in the search. We may be obliged to respect his decision to do that, but we are not obliged to follow his example. MATT CARTMILL Department of Biological Anthropology and Anatomy, Duke University Durham, North Carolina DOI 10.1002/ajpa.20691 Published online 31 July 2007 in Wiley InterScience (www.interscience.wiley.com). investigation. This book reprints the text of the 2004 Tanner Lecture on the evolution of morality in nonhuman primates and humans delivered by Frans de Waal at Princeton University’s Center for Human Values. This is the principal topic of the book and forms the foundation of much of the printed discourse that follows. There are additional sections authored by de Waal on anthropomorphism, the theory of mind in apes, and animal rights. de Waal’s contributions are followed by a series of commentaries by Robert Wright, Christine M. Korsgaard, Philip Kitcher, and Peter Singer, all philosophers American Journal of Physical Anthropology—DOI 10.1002/ajpa 119 BOOK REVIEWS of science with different research specializations, who dissect various elements of de Waal’s thesis on the evolution of morality. The book ends with a section in which de Waal responds to each commentator’s criticisms. The core of this book, and the reason to read it, is de Waal’s short, 58-page essay, ‘‘Morality Evolved: Primate Social Instincts, Human Morality, and the Rise and Fall of the Veneer Theory.’’ Here, he presents his thesis on the continuity in the capacity for moral behavior between humans and nonhuman primates, especially between humans and other hominoids. His choice to focus on the evidence for continuity between humans and other anthropoids is exceptional given that the tradition, both scientiﬁc and philosophical, is to focus on the discontinuities or those traits that make humans exceptional or unique. For de Waal, the issue appears not to be whether human deﬁnitions of morality can be applied to chimpanzees or other primates. Instead, ‘‘the relevant question rather is whether [nonhuman primates] possess capacities for reciprocity and revenge, for the enforcement of social rules, for the settlement of disputes, and for sympathy and empathy’’ (p 16). de Waal then marshals an impressive argument based on history, philosophy, and even current research in cognitive neuroscience to elaborate on the traits underlying moral reasoning in humans and the linkage of these to observations of nonhuman primates. He does not settle many issues with this essay, but he does ﬁrmly establish the question as scientiﬁcally relevant. Indeed, he will likely instigate many research projects based solely on the number of testable hypotheses he implies. This strictly evolutionary hypothesis of moral capacities is offered in contrast to what de Waal calls the Veneer Theory, the (possibly widely held) belief that moral behavior is a thin, external ‘‘veneer’’ over the selﬁsh, amoral (or immoral) core. Although his response to Veneer Theory is multifaceted, it is when the underlying nonbiological core of this argument is exposed that de Waal is most successful in rejecting it. It is among the commentaries that this book makes for slow and sometimes painful reading. There is a great MIXED METHOD DATA COLLECTION STRATEGIES. By William G. Axinn and Lisa D. Pearce. New York: Cambridge University Press. 2006. 230 pp. ISBN 0-521-85568-3. $70.00 (hardcover). Mixed method approaches are those that combine elements of one method of data collection with elements of one or more other data collection methods. The use of such approaches appears to be increasing in the social sciences, although it is, to varying degrees, the default approach among biocultural, biological, and some cultural anthropology investigators. As such, some of the arguments in Axinn and Pearce’s book Mixed Method Data Collection Strategies may seem old hat for anthropologists, especially the readers of this journal. What then does an anthropologist who already relies on mixed methods have to gain from this book? First, Axinn and Pearce lay out a convincing and powerful rationale for why mixed method approaches add value to studies. They rightfully point that mixing deal of quibbling about semantics (read lots of words in quotes, like ‘‘building blocks,’’ ‘‘naturalistic,’’ etc.). Each commentator picks up a thread of de Waal’s argument and raises objections—at times not without merit. All the commentators object in some manner to de Waal’s treatment of Veneer Theory. For example, Wright ﬁnds de Waal’s characterization of Veneer Theory as too simplistic to warrant serious consideration. Singer agrees and instead wonders how much of moral behavior is the result of underlying moral capability and how much is due to ‘‘veneer.’’ I sensed that the commentators are, to varying degrees, not yet ready to reject the possibility that human moral behavior is a strategy to satisfy our selﬁsh needs and motives within the constraints of human culture. However, what is most frustrating to me is the seeming unwillingness of these commentators to debate de Waal’s interpretation of the data. The problem is, I suspect, that the use of a term like ‘‘moral’’ carries a deeper connotation to philosophers, who have debated the topic for millennia, than the more restricted sense intended by a behavioral biologist. Possibly for this reason, Wright, Korsgaard, Kitcher, and Singer largely ignore de Waal’s core arguments and supporting data, as well as his notable anecdotes. For my purposes, and I believe for the anthropological audience as well, I ﬁnd de Waal’s labors to bring topics like conciliation, reciprocity, and empathy into the realm of the quantiﬁable to have greater value than the semantic and tangential arguments leveled by his commentators and critics. CHRISTOPHER P. HEESY Department of Anatomy Midwestern University Glendale, AZ DOI 10.1002/ajpa.20692 Published online 31 July 2007 in Wiley InterScience (www.interscience.wiley.com). methods ensure complementarity by counterbalancing strengths and weakness inherent in all methods. Mixing data collection strategies also generates ‘‘a comprehensive empirical record about a topic’’ (p. 2) and invites greater investigator involvement in data collection. The authors clearly believe that greater involvement yields higher quality data. Nor are those who do secondary data analysis of the hook. Several suggestions for their deeper involvement are made, and I particularly enjoyed the suggestion that researchers give or sit through the interview themselves—something that would shock people who have never collected primary data! In laying out the rationale for using mixed methods the book is also an extended critique of the outdated qualitative–quantitative dichotomy that continues to plague the social sciences. Second, because of the sociological background of the authors, the book covers a number of methodological issues related to causality and levels of analysis that are covered less frequently by anthropological texts. There is American Journal of Physical Anthropology—DOI 10.1002/ajpa 120 BOOK REVIEWS also considerable discussion of using data collected from mixed methods and the process of translating data into a form that can be used in statistical models; this process is not always so straightforward. These are subthemes within a larger discussion that speaks to the need to think deeply about how to collect data at varying levels and across time, as required by multilevel longitudinal studies. Third, although not a methods text per se, the book does provide examples of several innovative techniques that will be of much use to anthropologists. Chief among these hybrid methods are event history calendars, although the authors also cover the thought-provoking approach of systematic anomalous case analysis. The two speciﬁc calendars illustrated in the book are the neighborhood history calendar and the life history calendar. These are visual approaches used to assist respondents as they ﬁll in biographical elements of their lives or their neighborhoods or communities. This innovative technique requires substantial initial investment to ascertain events that are relevant to study participants, as these events become markers of time that respondents rely on to place events in chronological order. This initial investment leads to huge future returns, including greater knowledge of the study participants, study site, area history, and key informants, and generates hypotheses that can be subsequently tested. Many ﬁeld anthropologists do this kind of work already; however, Axinn and Pearce’s method adds slightly more structure and yields a survey instrument that is locally and culturally appropriate. The result is a data collection tool that is ﬂexible enough to be used among communities where literacy rates are low, when dates and ages are known only by a few, and when historical records are nonexistent. The approach also can yield data on overlapping events, which might be difﬁcult to get in more standard survey methods. As social scientists become increasingly interested in longitudinal designs and area-level effects, data collection instruments must become increasingly so- phisticated to capture this information in the correct order and at the corresponding level. The tools developed by Axinn and colleagues are well suited to meet these challenges. Mixed Method Data Collection Strategies is not a replacement for Russell Bernard’s immensely helpful book, Research Methods in Anthropology, nor do Axinn and Pearce intend it to be. Only a small number of speciﬁc methods are covered and some mixed methods techniques that are garnering increasing attention, like cultural consensus modeling, are nowhere mentioned. That is not a drawback but rather an argument to also use a mixed textbook approach; for example, Axinn and Pearce’s book in conjunction with Bernard’s book would be a great combo for a methods course. I suspect that many biocultural researchers will feel that anthropologists are underrepresented throughout the book and the bibliography. The examples and supporting citations are heavily slanted toward Axinn and colleagues’ own research, and lots of the material seems to have appeared in other forms elsewhere; but this is not a disadvantage. Rather, it makes available to biological anthropologists a literature previously unknown to them and in a single source. Mixed Method Data Collection Strategies is an enjoyable read in which the arguments for utilizing the mixed methods approach are powerfully laid out and their strengths and limitations are honestly presented. CRAIG HADLEY Department of Anthropology Emory University Atlanta, Georgia DOI 10.1002/ajpa.20693 Published online 8 August 2007 in Wiley InterScience (www.interscience.wiley.com). American Journal of Physical Anthropology—DOI 10.1002/ajpa