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Human pre-historic events are older

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  • Joao Sousa
    Sonny, There is an important new twist to all this. In the following paper: Scally A.& R. Durbin. 2012. Revising the human mutation rate: implications for
    Message 1 of 37 , Nov 19, 2012

      There is an important new twist to all this. In the following paper:

      Scally A.& R. Durbin. 2012. Revising the human mutation rate: implications for understanding human evolution. Nature Reviews Genetics 13: 745-753.doi : 10.1038/nrg3295

      ... they revised downwards the human genome mutation rate, and this leads to a recalibration of most human phylogenetic trees. Human pre-historic events are thus shifted to the past. Now the time of behaviorally modern human expansion is more likely to have been in 60-80 Mya, which is also more consistent with the archeological data. For example, there are Australian archaelogical evidence suggesting the OoA migratio n may have been before 60 Mya.

      At 13:44 19-11-2012, you wrote:


      Certainly, anatomically modern and behaviorally modern are two distinct subjects, which may or may not have evolved in tandem.

      There is ongoing debate about what constitutes modern human behavior.  Here is a review article discussing the debate: " Defining behavioral modernity in the context of Neandertal and Anatomically Modern Human Populations ."  As you will read in the article's conclusion, "The majority of researchers would agree that (a) the relationship between modern anatomy and modern behavior is more complex than once envisioned; (b) however broadly defined, modern behavior has symboling at its core; (c) the archaeological record of the African MSA [Middle Stone Age] has rendered invalid the idea of a `human revolution' occurring for the first time in the UP [Upper Paleolitic] of Western Europe; (d) late Neandertals demonstrate modern behavior in some form or to some degree; and (e) social, demographic, and cultural factors are key to understanding patterning and variability in the archaeological record" (p. 447).

      I believe you will find that most scholars specializing in the subject agree that however you define "modern human behavior," it arose long before the second African dispersal.  Therefore, I think my comment stands: it arose at a time when all humans were the same skin color.

    • Julienne
      ... Cats have absolutely different sounds for different messages - and they are recognizable to humans paying attention. I can tell whether one is angry,
      Message 37 of 37 , Nov 23, 2012
        At 06:53 PM 11/19/2012, clarence_sonny_williams wrote:

        Yes, but then language must be defined.  Vervet monkeys have different
        calls for different predators, as each one calls for a different escape
        tactic.  Baboon confrontations involve different communications
        depending upon whether it is kin, the dominance of the individual, etc.
        Chimps are also "forward thinking" to some extent, as they will feign
        knowing where food is located just to throw off the dominant male.
        Several species have knowledge of "self," as established by spots
        painted on their faces.

        Cats have absolutely different sounds for different messages - and they
        are recognizable to humans paying attention. I can tell whether  one is
        angry, impatient, irritated, calling to babies, soothing babies or each other.
        Sometimes I don't know what one wants. One came up to me several times
        outside  yesterday and lifted his head and made a quite demanding cry.
        The "demanding" part came from the direct look into my eyes, and the
        very firm body language. He clearly wanted me to do something. My son
        interpreted it, "Mom - he wants to go inside." Sure enough, my son went
        over to the front door and the cat followed him with great relief and
        went inside. The other cats who were outside with us ignored the chance
        to go in - they were having a wonderful time chasing around in the sun.

        As to animals remembering, or thinking forward, that is clearly
        something they can do. What the details are, what they think while
        sitting around, i wish I knew. It reminds me of when my sons were
        tiny, and couldn't yet speak, and I couldn't wait to know what
        was going on inside their minds. But I watch them go back to a place
        where they wanted to repeat an experience - such as finding a mouse,
        or food, or just to get into a space where they aren't normally
        allowed. They absolutely plan and plot.

        Everything from bees and ants and elephants are known, aren't they,
        for repeating behaviours and events. And animals (chimps, orangs, lions)
        are known to remember each other , and humans after long periods of time.

        I think we have a great deal to learn about the language of other animals -
        and their internal "language" as well.

        I have to say I feel awful when, as yesterday, an animal is so clearly
        trying to tell me something and I don't know what it is. Feel I'm
        letting him down. Luckily, there are many times when I do know, as I
        think my son did yesterday.

        I'll give you an example of animal planning. I don't let any of the
        cats sleep in my room. Some of them, especially Serena, Annie, Mercury,
        and Wolfgang, all feel this is not in their best interests. Every one
        of them has worked out ways to sneak in and hide in different places -
        and then creep out in the night. This takes planning, and it also takes
        purposeful deception, and a degree of intelligence. Something sure is
        going on in their heads - including remembering how they did this
        before, and advanced planning.


        Those recent rock shards found in S. Africa that were apparently used in
        tools strongly suggests that the technology was transferred via
        language, and those are dated to 70 kya.

        There's lots of interesting speculation in anthropology, isn't there?

        --- In evolutionary-psychology@yahoogroups.com, "jimdehn" <jimdehn@...>
        > I can't really imagine, what I think of as human behavior without self
        > directed thought, and that requires internal language. So the question
        > to me, is when, or how did humans develop language, I don't know if
        > will ever be answered, but I like Bickerton's idea that it arose out
        > the need convey information about events that were distant in both
        > and location, due to the hunting and killing of very large game.


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