Jonathan Marks

PhD (University of Arizona)
Professor of Anthropology, UNC-Charlotte
PopAnth Author

Jonathan Marks teaches biological anthropology at the University of North Carolina at Charlotte. His most recent book is "Tales of the ex-Apes: How We Think About Human Evolution," published by the University of California Press. He writes about human biodiversity, science, and what it means to be 98% chimpanzee. You can read more about humans and their biological quirks on Jon’s blog, anthropomics, and learn who are (and aren’t) your ancestors through his TEDx talk, “You are not an ape!


Every arena of science has its own flash-point issues ? chemistry and poison gas, physics and the atom bomb ? and genetics has had a troubled history with race. As Jonathan Marks reveals, this dangerous relationship rumbles on to this day, still leaving plenty of leeway for a belief in the basic natural inequality of races.

The eugenic science of the early twentieth century and …

 What do we think about when we think about human evolution? With his characteristic wit and wisdom, anthropologist Jonathan Marks explores our scientific narrative of human origins—the study of evolution—and examines its cultural elements and theoretical foundations. In the process, he situates human evolution within a general anthropological framework and presents it as a special case …

This lively and provocative book casts an anthropological eye on the field of science in a wide-ranging and innovative discussion that integrates philosophy, history, sociology, and auto-ethnography. Jonathan Marks examines biological anthropology, the history of the life sciences, and the literature of science studies while upending common understandings of science and culture with a …

Marks presents the field of molecular anthropology—a synthesis of the holistic approach of anthropology with the reductive approach of molecular genetics—as a way of improving our understanding of the science of human evolution. This iconoclastic, witty, and extremely readable book illuminates the deep background of our place in nature and asks us to think critically about what science …

Are humans unique? This simple question, at the very heart of the hybrid field of biological anthropology, poses one of the false of dichotomies—with a stereotypical humanist answering in the affirmative and a stereotypical scientist answering in the negative.

The study of human biology is different from the study of the biology of other species. In the simplest terms, …

In The Alternative Introduction to Biological Anthropology, author Jon Marks presents an innovative framework for thinking about the major issues in the field with fourteen original essays designed to correlate to the core chapters in standard textbooks. Each chapter draws on and complements--but does not reconstitute (except for the sake of clarity)--the major data and ideas presented …

PopAnth Articles

Are we apes? No, we are humans

Are we apes? No, we are humans

Pop biology often tells us that "we are apes," but the argument is not a valid evolutionary one. So if we aren't apes, then what are we?Read on »



We live in a world of bio-politics, in which the genomes of disempowered people are subject to malicious slanders. Why are studies that blame human biology for global inequality still being taken seriously?Read on »