Meredith F. Small

Visiting Scholar

Ph.D. University of California, Davis, 1980 M.A. University of Colorado, 1976 A.B. San Diego State University, 1973

Research Interests:

The intersection of biology and culture, parenting, parenting belief systems, the transmission of knowledge and advice, human evolution, behavioral ecology. I was trained as a biological anthropologist and primate behaviorist and worked on four species of macaques in captivity and in the field. My graduate work focused on female macaque behavior during breeding season and birth season. I then spent two years as a post doctoral researcher at the California Primate Research Center where David Glenn Smith and I did a variety of genetic studies related to female macaque reproductive success and also one year at La Forêt de Singes in France watching captive female Barbary macaques. My current project is an evaluation of parenting advice in America, and hopefully across cultures. How are belief systems translated into parenting style and how are parents affected by advice from others? How are American parents coping with the mass of advice that comes their way from pediatricians, advice books and mommy blogs? How does parenting in America differ from other cultures? Titled Speaking of Kids, this project involves interviews with parents across the country, starting with Philadelphia.

Publications:

Selected Books:

 

THE CULTURE OF OUR DISCONTENT; BEYOND THE MEDICAL MODEL OF

MENTAL HEALTH. Joseph Henry Press, 2006

 

KIDS; HOW BIOLOGY AND CULTURE SHAPE THE WAY WE

RAISE OUR CHILDREN. Doubleday, 2001

 

OUR BABIES, OURSELVES; HOW BIOLOGY AND CULTURE SHAPE THE WAY

WE PARENT. Anchor Books (Doubleday), 1998. Translated into Japanese, Spanish,

and Czech.

 

WHAT'S LOVE GOT TO DO WITH IT? THE EVOLUTION OF HUMAN MATING.

Anchor Books (Doubleday), 1995. Translated into Japanese.

 

FEMALE CHOICES; SEXUAL BEHAVIOR OF FEMALE PRIMATES. Cornell

University Press, 1993.

 

Selected Publications:

The Culture of Babies. CHILD magazine, Australia, September 2014. Introduction by Karen Miles, editor. Let Them Tend Cows. Room for Debate, The New York Times online, invited commentary, June 12, 2011.

We Are What We Know. Room for Debate, The New York Times online, invited commentary on Amy Chua. January 14, 2011.

Tradition vs Opinions. Room for Debate, The New York Times online, invited commentary, March 12, 2010.

 

Daring to bare. Op/Ed THE NEW YORK TIMES, October 10, 2005

 

Why my body? THE WASHINGTON POST April 19, 2005.

 

The natural history of childhood. In: Childhood in America, S. Olfman, ed. Greenwood

Publishing, 2004

 

Christmas cards as social networks. NEW SCIENTIST December, 2003.

 

Evolution of the meat-sex exchange, book review, THE NEW YORK TIMES, August 28, 2003.

 

Orangutans show signs of culture. DISCOVER 25:52, 2003.

 

Captivated. NATURAL HISTORY 112:80, 2003

 

How many father are best for a child? DISCOVER 24:54-61, 2003.

 

Females that did evolve. Introduction. Comparative Behavior of Bonobos and

Chimpanzees, C. Boem and L. Marchand eds. 2002

 

String theory. NATURAL HISTORY 111:14-15, 2002.

 

Do animals have culture? SCIENTIFIC AMERICAN 284:104-106, 2001.

 

Trouble in paradise. NEW SCIENTIST 168:34-38, 2000.

 

Island of the apes. NATURAL HISTORY 109:87, 2000.

 

Gut instincts. DISCOVER 21:34-37, 2000.

 

More than the best medicine. SCIENTIFIC AMERICAN 283:24, 2000.

 

Analyze this. NATURAL HISTORY 108:84-86, 1999.

 

Revealed ovulation in humans? JOURNAL OF HUMAN EVOLUTION 1996 30:483-

488.

Are we losers? Putting a mating theory to the test. THE NEW YORK TIMES, March 30, 1999.

 

Bringing back baby. (cover story) NATURAL HISTORY 108:68-71, 1999.

 

A woman's curse? (cover story) THE SCIENCES 39:24-29, 1999.

 

Our babies, ourselves. NATURAL HISTORY 106:41-51, 1997.

 

Family values. THE SCIENCES (cover story). 37:40-44, 1997.

 

China's mountain monkeys. NEW SCIENTIST 154:38-41, 1997.

 

Read in the bone. NATURAL HISTORY 106:14-17, 1997.

 

An anthropologist's attic. SCIENTIFIC AMERICAN 275:82-85, 1996.

 

Paleontological Predictions. SCIENTIFIC AMERICAN 274:112-114, 1996.

 

These animals think, therefore. NATURAL HISTORY 105:26-31, 1996.

 

 

Writing about science. In: A FIELD GUIDE FOR SCIENCE WRITERS, D. Blum and

M. Knudson, eds. Oxford University Press, 1997 pp.57-64.

 

Rethinking human nature, again. NATURAL HISTORY. 104: 22-24, 1995.

The seven macaques of Sulawesi. PACIFIC DISCOVERY 48:24-27, 1995.

Bringing up baby. NEW SCIENTIST 146:36-39, 1995.

Making a monkey of human nature. NEW SCIENTIST 146:30-33, 1995.

 

When Mr. right is too much effort. NEW SCIENTIST 143:30-33, 1994.

 

Ay up, A chimp wi'an accent. NEW SCIENTIST 142:33-136, 1994.

 

Macaque see, macaque do. NATURAL HISTORY 103:8-11, 1994.

 

Closing the gap; chimpanzee multiculturalism. WILDLIFE CONSERVATION 96:16-23, 1993

 

The evolution of female sexuality and mate selection in humans. HUMAN NATURE 1992

3:133-156.

 

Promiscuity in Barbary macaques (Macaca sylvanus). AMERICAN JOURNAL OF

PRIMATOLOGY 1990 20:267-282.

 

Alloparental behavior in Barbary macaques (Macaca sylvanus). ANIMAL BEHAVIOUR

1990 39:297-306.

 

Consortships and conceptions in captive rhesus macaques (Macaca mulatta). PRIMATES

1990 31:339-350.

 

Social climber; Rise in rank by a female Barbary macaque. FOLIA PRIMATOLOGICA

1990 55:85-91.

 

Female choice in nonhuman primates. YEARBOOK OF PHYSICA ANTHROPOLOGY

1989 32:103-127.

 

Aberrant sperm and the evolution of human mating patterns.

ANIMAL BEHAVIOUR 1989 38:544-546.

 

Female sexual behavior and conception; Are there really sperm to spare?

CURRENT ANTHROPOLOGY 1989b 29:81-100.

 

Smith, D.G. and M.F. Small Mate choice by lineage in three captive groups of

rhesus macaques (Macaca mulatta). AMERICAN JOURNAL OF PHYSICAL

ANTHROPOLOGY 1987 73:185-191.

 

Small, M.F. and S. Blaffer Hrdy Secondary sex ratios by maternal rank, parity,

and age in captive rhesus macaques (Macaca mulatta). AMERICAN JOURNAL OF

PRIMATOLOGY 1986 11:359-365.

 

Small, M.F. and D.G. Smith The influence of birth timing upon infant growth and

survival in captive rhesus macaques (Macaca mulatta). INTERNATIONAL JOURNAL

OF PRIMATOLOGY 1986 7:289-304.

 

Small, M.F. and D.G. Smith Sex of infants produced by male rhesus macaques.

AMERICAN NATURALIST 1985 126:354-361.

 

 

Small, M.F. and D.G. Smith Chromosomal analysis of perinatal death in Macaca

mulatta and Macaca radiata. AMERICAN JOURNAL OF PRIMATOLOGY 1983

5:381-384.

 

Females without infants; Mating strategies in two species of captive macaques. FOLIA

PRIMATOLOGICA 1983b 40:125-133.

 

Reproductive failure in macaques. AMERICAN JOURNAL OF PRIMATOLOGY

1982 2:137-147.

 

A comparison of mother and nonmother behaviors during birth season in two species of

captive macaques. FOLIA PRIMATOLOGICA 1982 38:99-107.

 

Comparative social behavior of female bonnet and rhesus macaques. ZEITSCHRIFT FÜR

TIERPSYCHOLOGIE 1982 59:1-6.

 

Small, M.F. and D.G. Smith The relationships between maternal and paternal rank

in rhesus macaques. ANIMAL BEHAVIOUR 1982 30:626-627.

Appointments:

Professor Emerita and Weiss Presidential Fellow, Cornell University