Larissa SwedellLarissa Swedell      Ph.D, Columbia University 2000
  • Professor, Department of Anthropology, Queens College
  • Doctoral Faculty, City University of New York
  • Honorary Research Associate, University of Cape Town

                                                Office: Powdermaker Hall 315-E

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I am a biological anthropologist and field primatologist with a primary research focus on the social behavior and ecology of hamadryas baboons at the Filoha field site in Ethiopia's Awash National Park.  For nearly three decades I have been leading the Filoha Hamadryas Project, which began with my PhD research in 1996-1998 and is currently co-directed by Shahrina Chowdhury (Brooklyn College-CUNY) and myself. With students and collaborators I've investigated numerous aspects of the ecology and behavior of this species.  The Filoha Hamadryas Project is the only currently operational long-term field project focusing on the behavioral biology of hamadryas baboons, which are unique among primates with regard to their male dominated multi-level society and their potential to elucidate human social evolution.

Since 2006 I have also helped to coordinate research on chacma baboons in the Cape Peninsula of South Africa.  As a founding member of the Baboon Research Unit at the University of Cape Town (UCT) in 2006, I've collaborated with researchers at UCT and others on studies of various aspects of chacma baboon behavior and ecology.

I am based at Queens College, part of the City University of New York (CUNY) system, and am a member of the Anthropology, Biology, and Psychology Doctoral Faculty at the CUNY Graduate Center.  I am also an Honorary Research Associate in the Department of Archaeology at the University of Cape Town.

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Research Interests:
  • Biological Anthropology
  • Sexual Selection & Sexual Conflict
  • Evolution of Social Behavior
  • Primate Reproductive Strategies
  • Primate Behavioral Ecology
  • Human Social Evolution

Courses at QC:
  • Introduction to Human Evolution (102)
  • Essentials of Biological Anthropology (260) 
  • The Nonhuman Primates (262)
  • Humans and Nature in South Africa (279)
  • Evolution and Human Behavior (368)
  • Primate Behavior and Ecology (369)
  • The Human-Primate Interface (375)

Courses at CUNY Graduate Center
  • Primate Behavioral Biology (NYCEP)
  • Professional Development Seminar (NYCEP) 
  • Sexual Selection Graduate Seminar
  • Primates as Models for Human Evolution Graduate Seminar
  • Primate Behavior and Ecology Graduate Seminar

mailing address: Department of Anthropology, Queens College–CUNY, 65-30 Kissena Boulevard, Flushing, NY 11367-1597

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