Jonathan M. Marks

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Jonathan M. Marks
Born 1955 (age 61–62)
Nationality American
Occupation Anthropologist
Organization University of North Carolina at Charlotte
Indigenous Peoples Council on Biocolonialism (Nixon, Nevada)

Jonathan M. Marks (born 1955) is an American biological anthropologist at the University of North Carolina at Charlotte.

Early life and education[edit]

Born in 1955, Marks studied at the Johns Hopkins University in Baltimore and took graduate degrees in genetics and anthropology from the University of Arizona, completing his doctorate in 1984.

Career[edit]

Marks did post-doctoral research in the genetics department at UC-Davis from 1984-1987, then taught at Yale for 10 years and Berkeley for 3, before settling in Charlotte where he is now a professor at the University of North Carolina-Charlotte.[1][not in citation given]

Marks was one of the first anthropologists to sequence DNA as part of their research, a practice that is now widespread.[2][not in citation given] He is skeptical of scientists’ understanding of genetics and how genes relate to individual humans or to human groups. He contends that genetic differences do not adequately describe the relationships between humans and chimpanzees because the two species are 98% similar genetically but very different physically and behaviorally.[3]

Marks published works include many scholarly articles and essays. He is an outspoken critic of scientific racism, and has prominently argued against the idea that "race" is a natural category. In Marks's view, "race" is a negotiation between patterns of biological variation and patterns of perceived difference. He argues that race and human diversity are different subjects, and do not map on to one another well.[3]

Marks has also served on the Board of Directors of the Indigenous Peoples Council on Biocolonialism, Nixon, Nevada.[4]

In 2012, he received the First Citizens Bank Scholars Medal, honoring his career of intellectual inquiry.[3]

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