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Anat Rec (Hoboken). 2017 Apr;300(4):628-632. doi: 10.1002/ar.23561.

Anatomy, Development, and Function of the Human Pelvis.

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Department of Anthropology, Dartmouth College, Hanover, New Hampshire, 03755.
Department of Anthropology, University of Delaware, Newark, Delaware, 19716.


The pelvis is an anatomically complex and functionally informative bone that contributes directly to both human locomotion and obstetrics. Because of the pelvis' important role in obstetrics, it is one of the most sexually dimorphic bony elements of the human body. The complex intersection of pelvic dimorphism, locomotion, and obstetrics has been reenergized by exciting new research, and many papers in this special issue of the pelvis help provide clarity on the relationship between pelvic form (especially female) and locomotor function. Compared to the pelvis of our ape relatives, the human pelvis is uniquely shaped; it is superoinferiorly short and stout, and mediolaterally wide-critical adaptations for bipedalism that are already present in some form very early in the history of the hominin lineage. In this issue, 13 original research papers address the anatomy, development, variation, and function of the modern human pelvis, with implications for understanding the selection pressures that shaped and continue to shape this bone. This rich collection of scholarship moves our understanding of the pelvis forward, while raising dozens of new questions that we hope will serve as inspiration for colleagues and students (both current and future) puzzled by this fascinatingly complex bone. Anat Rec, 300:628-632, 2017.


bipedalism; hominin; obstetrics; pelvis evolution

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