Jeremy DeSilva

Academic Appointments

Associate Professor, Department of Anthropology
Faculty in Ecology, Evolution, Environment and Society (EEES) graduate program
Honorary Research Fellow, Evolutionary Studies Institute, University of the Witwatersrand, South Africa

Jeremy "Jerry" DeSilva is an Associate Professor of Anthropology at Dartmouth College. He is a paleoanthropologist, specializing in the locomotion of the first apes (hominoids) and early human ancestors (hominins). His particular anatomical expertise-- the human foot and ankle-- has contributed to our understanding of the origins and evolution of upright walking in the human lineage.  He has studied wild chimpanzees in Western Uganda and early human fossils in Museums throughout Eastern and South Africa. From 1998-2003, Jerry worked as an educator at the Boston Museum of Science and continues to be passionate about science education. He is the author of the 2021 book First Steps: How Upright Walking Made Us Human. Jerry lives in Norwich, VT with his wife Erin and their twins Ben and Josie.

409 Silsby, Department of Anthropology
HB 6047
Ph.D. University of Michigan, 2008
B.A. Cornell University, 1998

Selected Publications

DeSilva, J. 2021. First Steps. How Upright Walking Made us Human. HarperCollins.

DeSilva, J., 2021. Editor. A Most Interesting Problem. What Darwin’s Descent of Man Got Right and Wrong About Human Evolution. Princeton University Press.

Prabhat, A.M., Miller, C.K., Prang, T.C., Spear, J.K., Williams, S.A., DeSilva, J.M. 2021. Homoplasy in the evolution of modern human-like joint proportions in Australopithecus afarensis. eLife. 10: e65897.

Kitchel, N., DeSilva, J.M. 2021. First AMS radiocarbon date and stable C:N isotope analysis for the Mount Holly Mammoth, Vermont, USA. Boreas.

Böhme, M., Spassov, N., DeSilva, J.M., Begun, D. 2020. Reply to: Reevaluating bipedalism in Danuvius. Nature. 586, E4-E5.

DeSilva, J.M., McNutt, E.J., Zipfel, B., Ward, C.V. Kimbel, W.H. 2020. Short Communication: Associated Australopithecus afarensis second and third metatarsals (A.L. 333-133) from Hadar, Ethiopia. Journal of Human Evolution. 146, 102848.

McNutt, E., DeSilva, J. 2020. Evidence for an elongated Achilles tendon in Australopithecus. The Anatomical Record. 303, 2382-2391.

DeSilva, J., McNutt, E., Benoit, J., Zipfel, B. 2019. One Small Step: A review of Plio-Pleistocene hominin foot evolution. Yearbook of Physical Anthropology. S67: 63-140.

Friedl, L., Claxton, A.G., Walker, C.S., Churchill, S.E., Holliday, T.W., Hawks, J.W., Berger, L.R., DeSilva, J.M., Marchi, D. 2019. Femoral neck and shaft structure in Homo naledi from the Dinaledi Chamber (Rising Star System). Journal of Human Evolution. 133, 61-77.

Laudicina, N., Rodriguez, F., DeSilva, J. 2019. Reconstructing birth in Australopithecus sediba. PLoS ONE. 14, e0221871.

Walker, C., Cofran, Z.D., Grabowski, M., Marchi, D., Cook, R.W., Churchill, S.E., Tommy, K.A., Throckmorton, Z., Ross, A.H., Hawks, J., Yapunich, G.S., Van Arsdale, A.P., Rentzeperis, F., Berger, L., DeSilva, J. 2019. Morphology and evolution of the Homo naledi femora from Lesedi. American Journal of Physical Anthropology. 170, 5-23.

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