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The UO Human Animal Lab is dedicated to better understanding humans as a culture-using animal by examining the hunting-and-gathering conditions that shaped the evolution of our species. We explore cultural continuity and variation across traditional and modern societies, with an emphasis on symbolic and aesthetic behavior. Our aim is twofold: we seek to elucidate (1) the cognitive and biological capacities that scaffold the generation of cultural phenomena, and (2) the ways in which these capacities respond to different social and ecological conditions to produce variation within and across cultures. Our lab includes both research and teaching components.