The Fossil Chronicles: How Two Controversial Discoveries Changed Our View of Human Evolution

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University of California Press, 3 oct. 2011 - 280 páginas
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Two discoveries of early human relatives, one in 1924 and one in 2003, radically changed scientific thinking about our origins. Dean Falk, a pioneer in the field of human brain evolution, offers this fast-paced insider’s account of these discoveries, the behind-the-scenes politics embroiling the scientists who found and analyzed them, and the academic and religious controversies they generated. The first is the Taung child, a two-million-year-old skull from South Africa that led anatomist Raymond Dart to argue that this creature had walked upright and that Africa held the key to the fossil ancestry of our species. The second find consisted of the partial skeleton of a three-and-a-half-foot-tall woman, nicknamed Hobbit, from Flores Island, Indonesia. She is thought by scientists to belong to a new, recently extinct species of human, but her story is still unfolding. Falk, who has studied the brain casts of both Taung and Hobbit, reveals new evidence crucial to interpreting both discoveries and proposes surprising connections between this pair of extraordinary specimens.
 

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Now I know more about human, hominid, australopithecine and related brains that I ever thought I'd know. As it turns out, there is a discipline called paleoneurology which main subject is the ... Leer reseña completa

Índice

Introduction
1
1 Of Paleopolitics and Missing Links
5
A Fossil to Rival Piltdown
20
3 Taungs Checkered Past
40
4 Sulcal Skirmishes
59
5 Once upon a Hobbit
76
6 Flos Little Brain
109
7 Sick Hobbits Quarrelsome Scientists
135
8 Whence Homo floresiensis?
161
9 Bones to Pick
188
Notes
199
Glossary of Neuroanatomical Terms
227
References
231
Index
253
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Sobre el autor (2011)

Dean Falk is a Senior Scholar at the School for Advanced Research in Santa Fe, New Mexico. Her previous books include Finding Our Tongues: Mothers, Infants, and the Origin of Language and Braindance, Revised and Expanded Edition: New Discoveries about Human Origins and Brain Evolution.

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