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Re: [AAT] cooking & brain growth?

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  • Marc Verhaegen
    I just sent them this (comments): We don t have to hypothesize here unique (human-specific) explanations such as cooking IMO. When we simply use the
    Message 1 of 2 , Nov 10, 2012
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      I just sent them this (comments):

      We don't have to hypothesize here unique (human-specific) explanations
      such as cooking IMO. When we simply use the comparative evidence and
      accept that what is true for other animals is also true for humans, the
      Pleistocene brain expansion in archaic Homo is not so difficult to
      1.8 Ma-old erectus-like people are found all over the Old World, from
      Mojokerto to Georgia to Algeria & Lake Turkana. These places were not
      connected through open plains, as is still believed by some
      anthropologists ("Savannahstan", "born to run", "endurance running" etc.).
      Instead, in all these sites, there were abundant shellfish (Stephen Munro
      2004). Aïn-Hanech in Algeria was a coastal floodplain. Dmanisi in Georgia
      was a "lake or pond rich in lacustrine resources" not far from the
      connection at the time between the Caspian Sea & the Black Sea. At Lake
      Turkana, Homo appeared together with stingrays, which suggests marine
      connections then (José Joordens 2011). And the Mojokerto child was found
      amid barnacles & saltwater & freshwater molluscs (river delta).
      Obviously, Pleistocene Homo trekked along the coasts & from the coasts
      inland along the rivers, in savannahs & elsewhere. They collected all
      sorts of waterside foods, not only shellfish, turtles, birds' eggs etc.,
      but also drowned ungulates, stranded whales etc. & probably (difficult
      fossilisation) different plant foods. The consumption of shellfish not
      only helps explain human dexterity & perhaps bipedality (wading &
      beach-combing?) but also the Pleistocene brain expansion: very large
      brains are typical of littoral & marine mammals, and the abundance of
      brain-specific nutrients in aquatic foods (PUFAs such as DHA, iodine etc.)
      is an uncomparably better explanation of our "expensive tissue" (small gut
      & large brain) than the consumption of meat ("Survival of the fattest"
      Stephen Cunnane).
      Google "econiche Homo".

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