Steven Borish

Associate Professor

Department of Human Development & Women's Studies

(510) 885-3598
MI 3059
Photo of Steven Borish

Originally trained as a cultural anthropologist at Stanford University, Steven Borish returned to Stanford for further study and earned an M.S. in Biological Sciences. Borish has been working to develop an integrated life cycle perspective that insists any phase of the life cycle must be viewed in relation to other stages and to the life cycle as a whole. The life cycle focus in his teaching ranges from childbirth and infancy through late adulthood and aging, and students are challenged through reading, research and class discussions to find what the anthropologist Gregory Bateson called "the pattern that connects." After serving for two years as a U.S. Peace Corps teacher in Somalia, he went on to study communal living on an Israeli kibbutz as well as in a commune in the Santa Cruz mountains. Two Fulbright grants enabled him to spend close to a decade studying culture and educational systems in the three Scandinavian countries: Norway, Denmark and Sweden. One of his two books dealing with Scandinavia, The Land of the Living: Denmark's Non-violent Path to Modernization, was recently translated into Japanese. Before arriving at CSUEB, Borish taught at Swarthmore College, and the Universities of Stockholm, Trondheim and Copenhagen. His current publications deal with   1)  bison conservation and its cultural implications both for Native-Americans and for U.S. society, and  2) the emerging field of epigenetics, through a study of the life and work of the biologist who first invented the term epigenetics (1939), Conrad Hal Waddington (1905-1975). Borish, who speaks six languages, has research interests in cross-cultural education, developmental biology, human paleoanthropology and history and philosopy of science.

Professional Focus

See above.


  • B.A., Carleton College
  • Stanford University, M.S. Biology, Ph.D Anthropology


Spring Quarter 2017
Course #SecCourse TitleDaysFromToLocationCampusTextbook Info
HDEV 330302Adult Development and AgingARRWEB-ONLINEOnline Campus View Books
HDEV 330303Adult Development and AgingARRWEB-ONLINEOnline Campus View Books
HDEV 330304Adult Development and AgingARRWEB-ONLINEOnline Campus View Books


In press       Encyclopedia of Evolutionary Biology, edited by Richard M. Kliman. Chapter 13: Waddington’s Epigenetic Landscape  Elsevier. First edition. Lead author (co-authored with S. Gilbert). Under contract.


2014           Bison: Yesterday, Today and Tomorrow. Natural Areas Journal. July, Volume 34, Number 3: 365-375. (co-authored with M. Kolipinski, A. Scott, K. Kozlowski and S. Ghosh)

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