The biocultural approach of anthropologists is well suited to understand the interrelationship of urbanism and human biology. Urbanism is a social construction that has continuously changed and presented novel adaptive challenges to its residents. Urban living today involves several biological challenges, of which one is pollution. Using three different types of pollutants as examples, air pollution, lead, and noise, the impact of pollution on human biology (mortality, morbidity, reproduction, and development) can be seen. Chronic exposure to low levels of these pollutants has a small impact on the individual, but so many people are exposed to pollution that the effect species-wide is substantial. Also, disproportionate pollutant exposure by socioeconomically disadvantaged groups exacerbates risk of poor health and well being.

Keyword(s): growthleadnoisestressurbanism

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  • Article Type: Review Article
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