Ray Hames
Professor Anthropology


I received my doctorate in anthropology from the University of California-Santa Barbara in 1978. Most of my research is on native peoples of the Venezuelan Amazon (Yanomamö & Ye'kwana) with funding from the NSF, LSB Leakey Foundation, and Harry Frank Guggenheim Foundation. My research interests are in behavioral ecology, food & labor exchange, human ecology, marriage, and kin and parental investment. I regularly teach courses on social structure, contentious issues in anthropology, warfare, and introductory cultural anthropology. I am a member of the National Academy of Sciences (anthropology section), past-president of the Evolutionary Anthropology Society of the American Anthropological Association, consulting editor for Human Nature, and for ten years I served as treasurer of the Human Behavior and Evolution Society.


Research and Current Projects

I am engaged in a wide variety of research and teaching projects. In research, I am finishing a manuscript of a concluding chapter in an edited volume on "game keepers or guardians" which are spirits who regulate hunting among a large number of subsistence based societies. I am also collecting data on the causes of murder and other forms of interpersonal violence using the HRAF. In teaching, I continue to work with colleagues in the School of Evolution and Social Change at ASU on improving ethnographic research methods and developing an online course on behavior observations as part of a package of methods courses.

Selected Publications

"Female foragers sometimes hunt, yet gendered divisions of labor are real: a comment on Anderson et al. (2023) The Myth of Man the Hunter" Evolution and Human Behavior. (2024) Vivek Vasi Venkataraman, Jordie Hoffman, Raymond B Hames, Duncan NE Stibbard-Hawkes, Karen Kramer, Robert Kelly, Kyle Farquharson, Edward H Hagen, Barry S Hewlett, Helen Elizabeth Davis, Luke Glowacki, Haneul Jang, Kristen Syne, Katie Starkweather, Sheina Lew-Levy.

"Impediments to peace." (2024) The Behavioral and Brain Sciences 47(2024): e11-e11.

"Game Keepers and Conservation". In The History and Environmental Impacts Hunting Deities: Supernatural Game Keepers and Animal Masters. R. Chacon, ed. Springer

"The utility of behavior observations for qualitative researchers". (2023). In Memoriam: Napoleon Chagnon 1938–2019. PNASIn The Handbook of Teaching Qualitative and Mixed Research Methods: A Step-by-Step Guide for Instructors. Ruth, A.,Wutich, A. and R. Bernard, eds. P. 84-87. Routledge, Oxford England.

Hames, Raymond, W. Irons, M. Flinn (2020) "In memoriam: Napoleon A. Chagnon." Evolution and Human Behavior, 41(3), 177-182.

Hames, Raymond (2020) "Cultural and reproductive success and the causes of war: A Yanomamö perspective." Evolution and Human Behavior, 41(3), 183-187

Hames, Raymond, W. Irons, M. Flinn (2020) "In memoriam: Napoleon A. Chagnon." Evolution and Human Behavior, 41(3), 177-182.

Hames, Raymond (2019) "Pacifying Hunter-Gatherers, Human Nature, 30(2):155-175

Chagnon, N. A., Lynch, R. F., Shenk, M. K., Hames, R., & Flinn, M. V. (2017). "Cross-cousin marriage among the Yanomamö shows evidence of parent-offspring conflict and mate competition between brothers" , 114(13): E2590-2607, Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences.

Jaeggi, A. V., Kramer, K. L., Hames, R., Kiely, E. J., Gomes, C., Kaplan, H., & Gurven, M. (2017). Human grooming in comparative perspective: People in six small-scale societies groom less but socialize just as much as expected for a typical primate. American Journal of Physical Anthropology, 162(4), 810-816. https://doi.org/10.1002/ajpa.23164

“Is Male Androphilia a Context-Dependent Universal?” (2017) Raymond Hames, Zachary Garfield, and Melissa Garfield.  Archives of Sexual Behavior 46 (1): 63-71.

“A Problematic Test of the Kin Selection Hypothesis among the Urak Lawoi of Ko Lipeh, Thailand: Commentary on Camperio Ciani, Battaglia, & Liotta (2016) Paul L. Vasey, Doug P. VanderLaan, Raymond Hames, & Amornthep Jaidee.   Journal of Sex Research 53(2): 149-152

“Kin Selection and Sexuality” (2015). In The International Encyclopedia of Human Sexuality, edited by Patricia Whelehan and Anne Bolin. Malden, Oxford: John Wiley and Sons, Ltd 

"Kin Selection"  In David Buss, ed., The Handbook of Evolutionary Psychology.  John Wiley & Sons: NY (2015)

“The Relational Embeddedness of Ye’kwana Meal Sharing: The Multilevel Social Relations Model for Count Data”  (2015) Koster, Jeremy, Raymond Hames, George Leckie, Andrew Miller, American Journal of Physical Anthropology. 157(3):507-512

“Behavioral Ecology”.  (2015) In International Encyclopedia of the Social & Behavioral Sciences, 2nd edition, Pages 246–251.  Elsevier: London.

"Diversity in Human Behavioral Ecology", Human Nature 25(4): 443-447 (2014)

"Female Fertility-Social Stratification-Hypergyny" Hypothesis of Male Homosexual Preference: Factual, Conceptual and Methodological Errors in Barthes et al. [Commentary] Evolution and Human Behavior. (2014)

Direct and Indirect Behavior Observations.  (with Michael Paolisso, 2nd author).  In R. Bernard and C. Gravlee, eds. "The Handbook of Methods in Cultural Anthropology", Pp. 293-313, 2nd Ed., Rowland & Littlefield: Lanham. (2014).

A life history perspective on skin cancer and the evolution of skin pigmentation.  American Journal of Physical Anthropology (2014)

A survey of non-classical polyandry.  Katie Starkweather and Raymond Hames.  Human Nature (2012) 23:149–17

"Anthropological Data Regarding the Adaptiveness of Hebephilia" (with Ray Blanchard, second author) Archives of Sexual Behavior, (2012) Volume 41, Number 4, Pages 745-74

"Statement on the Publication of Alice Dreger's Investigation, Darkness's Descent on the American Anthropological Association: A Cautionary Tale".  Human Nature 22:222-223 (2011)

Paolisso, M. and R. Hames "Methods for the Systematic Study of Human Behavior, Field Methods (2010).

Production Decisions and Time Allocation.  In Society and Environment: Methods and Research Design.  Vaccaro, Ismael , Eric Alden Smith and Shankar Aswani (eds.)  Cambridge University Press. (2010)

Meal Sharing among the Ye'kwana (With Carl McCabe) Human Nature 18 (1):1-22 (2007)

The Ecologically Noble Savage Debate Annual Review of Anthropology 36 (2007)

Growth rates and life histories in 22 small-scale societies (Robert Walker senior author with 12 co-authors!) American Journal of Human Biology 18:295–311 (2006)

Women's work, child care and helpers at the nest in a hunter-gatherer society. (With Patricia Draper) Human Nature, Vol. 15, No. 4, pp. 319-341 (2004)

Parental Investment and Child Health in a Yanomamö Village Suffering Short-term Food Stress.
Edward H. Hagen Raymond B. Hames, Nathan M. Craig, Matthew T. Lauer, Michael E. Price, Journal of Biosocial Sciences (2001)

Birth Order, Sibling Investment, and Fertility among the Ju/'hoansi (!Kung), (Patricia Draper, first author) Human Nature Vol. 11, No. 2: 117-156 (2000)

Educational Background

  • 1978 Ph.D. Anthropology, University of California, Santa Barbara
  • 1974 MA Anthropology, University of California, Santa Barbara
  • 1971 BA Anthropology, University of California, Santa Barbara
  • 1966-1968 Biology Major, California State Polytechnic University, San Luis Obispo

Research Interests

Behavioral ecology, food & labor exchange, human ecology, marriage, and kin and parental investment


Personal Site

Curriculum Vitae