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Title: Biological aspects of a world in transformation : the case of the Agta in the Philippines
Author: De Souza, R. G.
Awarding Body: University of Cambridge
Current Institution: University of Cambridge
Date of Award: 2005
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Indications of the hardships through which modern foragers are passing are the poor demographic dynamics of many of these groups. The Casiguran Agta show one of the most extreme mortality rates ever documented in human populations. The variability of situations enjoyed by the Agta and in relation to their Filipino neighbours can help towards the identification of correlates of high morality and possible alternatives. Therefore, the main aim is to study the biological consequences, in terms of demographic success, of the use of different subsistence strategies, taking into consideration their social, economical, and nutritional implications. The specific objectives of this study are: 1. To analyse the effect of health and nutrition within the various subsistence strategies practiced on the demography of the Agta, in comparison to neighbouring agricultural communities; 2. To study the internal and external pressures underlying the alternative forms of inter-ethnic interaction, both at the biological and socio-economic levels; 3. To verify the sustainability and/or tendencies of transformation of the responses in relation to a context of regional demographic, environment, and socio-economic changes. Information on socio-economy, life-history, diet, and health was obtained through interviews and observation. These address issues like the composition of the diet regarding foraging and agricultural products, the nature of relationship with agriculturalists and with the national society, and household measures of morbidity and mortality. Antropometric measurements of individuals are applied to a nutritional diagnosis. These are integrated with long-term demographic data and statistically analysed to explore the causes and consequences of the different options of development available for the Agta. Facing the fact that the contemporary situation of foragers results from the interaction of the long-term expansion of agriculture with more recent agents of change, both a general model and a chronologic reconstruction are proposed.
Supervisor: Not available Sponsor: Not available
Qualification Name: Thesis (Ph.D.) Qualification Level: Doctoral
EThOS ID:  DOI: Not available