Did earliest human ancestors have more apelike faces?
The earliest direct ancestors of modern humans may have looked more like apes than previously thought, a new study suggests.
But the findings, based on a reconstructed 1.9-million-year-old skull, are highly controversial among the anthropological community.
New computer-generated reconstructions suggest that the specimen had a smaller brain than scientists had believed as well as a distinctly protruding jaw.
"We see in this new reconstruction primitive features that are carryovers from what may be its Australopithecus ancestor," said study author Timothy Bromage, an adjunct professor at New York University College of Dentistry...
But other experts expressed skepticism about Bromage's argument that the repositioning of the specimen's face means its brain size must have been smaller.
"It's probably right that the face should stick far more forward. But to say that because they've changed the angle of the face, the brain size has to get smaller doesn't make any sense," said Robert Martin, a biological anthropologist at the Field Museum in Chicago, Illinois.
comments powered by Disqus
Dale B. Light - 4/11/2007
Before accepting this very iffy reconstruction, read John Hawks' critique here.
- New Hampshire professors at odds with library over discarded books
- Troubled history fuels Japan-China tension
- Independent Scotland's last gasp forgotten in Panama jungle
- LBJ was the ‘most-threatened president in American history’
- New exhibit at the World War I Museum ... Over by Christmas: August-December 1914
- Ken Burns on Colbert to promote his new documentary, "The Address"
- UC Santa Barbara History Department featuring a series on the Great Society at 50
- Historians are trying to recover censored texts from World War I poets
- Diane Ravitch blasts the NYT for failing to understand the controversy over Common Core
- Mormon history professors debate atheists in bid to foster greater understanding