There are still many people around who claim an inevitable enmity between science and religions. But in the last years, scientists from different fields and backgrounds started to explore religiosity (here defined as behavior toward supernatural agents) from the perspective of evolutionary theory. We agree that questions of existence or nonexistence of supernatural agents as ancestors, spirits, bodhisattvas or God may be beyond the scope of empirical sciences, but that we may explore religious behavior, its workings and functions with the same scientific respect and curiosity as any other natural, biocultural trait (i.e. musicality or speaking). The question from the perspective of evolutionary biology is: Why do people among all human populations invest so much time and energy in religious activities? Why did Homo Sapiens and Homo Neanderthalensis start to bury their dead as early the middle paleolithic , increasingly accompanied by rituals and gifts to the dead?
Archaeologists love to categorise things. It helps turn vague interpretations into concrete groupings (or typologies), speeding up the analysis of finds and allowing a quick and easy comparison between sites; even permitting one to track the evolution of technology by identifying changes between groups. The first such “evolutionary” typology came from Denmark and postulated there was a Stone Age, followed by the Bronze Age and finally the Iron Age. Despite being first suggested over two hundred years ago, the “three age” system is still used today.
Models built from forensic reconstruction of fossil skulls Reconstructs face age when humans and chimps shared common ancestry Ancestors from when 'hominids' first emerged in Africa By Rob Waugh UPDATED: 21:58 GMT, 6 January 2012 An exhibition in Dresden, Germany has used forensic technology to recreate some of the most distant members of the human evolutionary 'family' - ancestors stretching back seven million years. The 27 model heads were created using fossil remains, and includes a glimpse of sahelanthropus tchadensis, an ancestor dated to about seven million years ago, when our 'hominid 'ancestors' first originated in Africa. Sahelanthropus tchadensis lived seven million years ago - before the divergence of man and our closest evolutionary cousins, chimpanzees
Zürich, Switzerland. Great apes have the ability to learn socially and pass them down through a great many generations, a finding that demonstrates the same evolutionary roots for culture in humans and great apes. New research contributes an answer to the contentious question: does culture drive the variation in orangutan behavioral patterns, or are they caused by genetic factors and environmental influences. In humans, behavioral innovations are usually passed down culturally from one generation to the next through social learning. For many, the existence of culture in humans is the key adaptation that sets us apart from animals.
Bio Dr. Robert Sapolsky Dr.
On the Origin of Cooperative Species: New study reverses a decade of research claiming chimpanzee selfishness | The Primate DiariesA new study reverses a decade of research claiming chimpanzee selfishness. "Sharing is Caring" by Nathaniel Gold Charles Darwin had more in common with chimpanzees than even he realized. Before he was universally known for his theory of natural selection, the young naturalist was faced with one of the great moral choices in the history of science. The decision he made has long been hailed as the type of behavior that fundamentally separates humans from other apes. But a new study reveals for the first time that thinking of others unites humans and chimpanzees in a cooperative bond that reaches across two epochs to the very evolutionary ancestor Darwin predicted.
"Give orange me give eat orange me eat orange give me eat orange give me you." That's the longest string of words that Nim Chimpsky, a chimpanzee who scientists raised as a human and taught sign language in the 1970s, ever signed. He was the subject of Project Nim, an experiment conducted by cognitive scientists at Columbia University to investigate whether chimps can learn language. After years of exposing Nim to all things human, the researchers concluded that although he did learn to express demands — the desire for an orange, for instance — and knew 125 words, he couldn't fully grasp language, at least as they defined it.
Feature: Epigenetics key to human evolution - RNA, junk DNA, John Mattick, genetics, evolution, Epigenetics, DNA - Australian Life ScientistYou have landed here via a redirect from the old LifeScientist.com.au (previously published by IDG). Australian Life Scientist has a new home at Westwick-Farrow Media, and an all new website . If you are after a specific article, type the title or keywords into the SEARCH box top right of screen. For the latest articles, life science and biotech news, opinion pieces and much more, visit our targeted Topic Centres linked below. If you would like to SUBSCRIBE (free to qualified life science and biotech professionals) to Australian Life Scientist magazine (bi-monthly, print and digital versions), or the website newsletter, click here . If you are looking for the latest laboratory products, and a comprehensive laboratory supplier directory (search brands, products and companies) you will find this information on our sister website for laboratory professionals, www.Labonline.com.au
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Welcome to the UCSB online 3D gallery of modern primate relatives and fossil ancestors of humans. This gallery contains five modern primate crania, and five fossil crania. The crania can be rotated 360 degrees.
Berkeley, CA, USA. The search for the time, place, and circumstances of our arrival as Homo sapiens is one of the most important intellectual challenges we face, with answers that have important practical implications for our continuing survival. But first, the science. We know our own species and can distinguish ourselves from others.
C’est le plus ancien Homo sapiens jamais découvert dans le Sud-Est de l’Europe, et l’un des plus vieux exhumés sur le continent européen : des restes humains datés de 32000 ans ont été mis au jour en Crimée (Ukraine). Une équipe internationale, dont le CNRS et le Muséum national d’histoire naturelle sont partie prenante, est à l’origine de cette nouvelle. Les restes ont été exhumés sur le site de Buran-Kaya III, découvert en 1991 et dont l’une des couches correspond au Paléolithique supérieur. Celle-ci a livré plus de 160 fragments d’ossements humains et des os d’animaux, ainsi que des outils en pierre taillée et des parures (perles en ivoire de mammouth, coquillages perforés…). L’âge de 32000 ans a été obtenu par datation au carbone 14 d’un os humain et d’un os de cerf.
Neandertals ( Homo neanderthalensis ) are currently believed to be our closest evolutionary relatives. Although some researchers once thought they were our immediate ancestors in Europe, most now agree that Neandertals and modern humans most likely shared a common ancestor within the last 500,000 years, possibly in Africa. The morphological features typical of Neandertals first appear in the European fossil record about 400,000 years ago, with bones of full-fledged Neandertals showing up at least 130,000 years ago. They lived in Europe and western Asia, as far east as southern Siberia and as far south as the Middle East (see map), before disappearing from the fossil record about 30,000 years ago. <p style="text-align:right;color:#A8A8A8"></p>
Founded in 1968, The Leakey Foundation's mission is to increase scientific knowledge, education, and public understanding of human origins, evolution, behavior, and survival. The Foundation awards an average of $600,000, annually in general research grants, though two granting sessions. Priority for funding is given to the exploratory phases of promising new research projects that meet the stated purpose of the Foundation. For more information please visit our website www.leakeyfoundation.org. Founded in 1968, The Leakey Foundation's mission is to increase scientific knowledge, education, and public understanding of human origins, evolution, behavior, and survival.
From 1980 to 1985, I studied for Bachelor of Medicine (equivalent to M.B., Ch.B) at Dept. of Medicine, Tong-Ji Medical University, Wuhan, P.R. China. Then worked one year at a hospital in Wuhan as a Physician.