Concepts, alternative labor theory of anthropogenesis. - Social anthropology

Concepts, alternative to labor theory of anthropogenesis.

The overwhelming majority of anthropologists of the world still today share the basic position of the labor theory of anthropogenesis about the decisive role of making tools in the processes of hominization. At the same time, the current concept of "cultural adaptation" does not fully correspond to the basic principles of labor theory. As EN Chrysanthova and IV Perevozchikov emphasize, in this case it usually refers to an "autocatalytic reaction" or "cybernetic mechanism" of the feedback between the development of biology (brain) and culture under the leading role of genetic factors " .

Some researchers repeat the arguments of critics of the labor theory of anthropogenesis, without even trying to analyze them. So, in work

With. M. Pozdoyaeva noted four such "quotes":

1. "Science has established that the monkey also uses tools of labor, but does not become a person."

Indeed, a monkey can use even a smartphone in his own way, if it falls into her hands. However, in the labor theory of anthropogenesis, the emphasis is not so much on using tools as on the production process. Monkeys are not available for such processes.

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2. If one looks at the general scheme of human development offered by scientists, it turns out that there was no gradual evolution: new species appeared suddenly and for a long time co-existed with the old ones on an equal basis. "

However, Darwin did not require the evolution of the "gradualness", and the coexistence of old and new species (especially with a difference in ecological niches) does not at all contradict evolution, but rather follows from the concept of disruptive selection.

3. "Genetics shows that labor does not affect genes and chromosomes, and therefore could not cause significant changes in the organization of our ancestors."

Labor does not really act as a direct mutagenic factor. However, firstly, he acted as a necessary condition for natural selection: the mutations that ensured the most effective adaptation to the conditions of labor activity were fixed in the offspring. Secondly, labor is the most important social factor of "significant changes" in the social organization of our ancestors and their way of life. It marks the transition from an essentially biological inheritance to social inheritance through a culture mechanism peculiar only to man.

4. To create a person, work should have appeared before the person himself, t.p. specifically human activity should not deal with people, and monkeys. "

In fact, labor theory assumes that the labor process arises, is complicated and develops together with the emergence, complication and development of anthropogenesis. This complication is confirmed by numerous anthropological materials. In particular, modern anthropologists do not deny the possibility of sporadic manufacturing of australopithecines primitive tools.

With the acquisition of the erection and the beginning of the transformation of the surrounding world through the first manufactured tools, the way of life and behavior of the emerging person changed radically: unlike the adaptive activity of all other living beings, human activity began to be carried by the adaptive (transforming the surrounding reality) character.

A new way of working and a new way of life have become important factors in influencing the structure, organization and functions of the body. Transforming the surrounding world to meet their needs, the person actually "withdrew" the biological necessity of adaptation in accordance with the challenges of the external world, since the emerging (and even more so - the formed) person had the opportunity to "adapt" the world around him under the demands of his corporal organization, for example, to change the temperature regime of the environment through fire and warm clothes.

The American anthropologist W. La Barr formulated this feature of man as follows: "With the advent of human hands, old-fashioned evolution through the adaptation of the body goes out of use. All previous animals were exposed to the autoplastic evolution of their very substance, they gave their bodies to experimental adaptation in a blind natural desire for survival. & lt; ... & gt; Human evolution, on the contrary, occurs through alloplastic experiments with objects that are outside of its own body, and concerns only the products of its hands, mind and eyes, and not the body itself " .

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A special way of inheritance arose: the social experience of the new mode of activity was transmitted from generation to generation not by genetic means, but through the "social mechanism of culture." At the same time, both the corporal organization of man and the way of life were significantly complicated, and the type of activity.

Anthropologists focus on two critical issues:

1) the search for the reasons that led to the transition to the upright as a key adaptation of the human ancestors

2) solving the problem of the criteria for hominization, in other words, searching for the "face" that separates prehuman and the actually human phases of evolution.

It is established that the formation of the family of hominids is associated with the development of the ancestors of a new new , a more extensive eco-adaptive niche , within which emerged in principle a new way of adaptation. With this method, the survival of both individual individuals and groups of such individuals began to depend crucially on the use and manufacture of tools of labor. In time, the emergence of this new mode of adaptation coincided with the extinction of anthropoid apes in the Pliocene.

Modern anthropology put forward a number of hypotheses about those factors that could cause the initial changes in the morphology or behavior of human ancestors, and which could affect the course and pace of hominization. Among such factors are considered:

- a short-term increase in the background radiation, caused by tectonic movements, faults of the earth's crust and enhanced volcanism;

- inversion of the Earth's geomagnetic field; other stressful situations;

- isolation of hominid populations;

- heterosis;

caused by changes in the ecological environment, changes in lifestyle and behavioral responses, starting with eating behavior and "reproduction strategies" and ending with "pre-cultural behavior".

Many researchers, among the primary factors of hominization, consider the development of the mechanism of protection by throwing stones and especially hunting. It was hunting that could lead to a transition to bipedia, making tools, developing the hand and brain.

However, there are differences in the assessment of the role of natural selection in the process of hominization. It is questioned whether Darwinian theory can be used to explain a whole series of specific properties that have evolved in human evolution. Indeed, the main feature of anthropogenesis is the emergence of new social qualities, which led to a sharp weakening of natural selection; However, in the early stages of anthropogenesis, natural selection apparently played a very significant role in fixing qualitative changes, including, perhaps, in the development of greater sociality.

It is indicated the primary role of large mutations that caused significant anatomical changes in the transition to the upright. According to a number of anthropologists, an increase in the level of radiation in East and South Africa led to the appearance of early hominids; at the same time & quot; unirradiated & quot; primates from Equatorial and West Africa did not morphologically morphologically.

At the same time, the view was held that "the emergence of the human line of evolution was a unique phenomenon, the possibility of which was determined by the coincidence of favorable circumstances in a given place and at a given time; this largest event in the evolution of the organic world can not be explained by any one cause or premise, although it was probably based on changes in the ecological situation and the use of tools as an adaptation to life in the savannah & quot; .

The factors of hominization are closely related to changes in the natural environment. Thus, at the turn of the Miocene and Pliocene there was a cooling, which was replaced by warming in the Lower Pliocene. A new drop in temperature occurred in the Upper Pliocene. This shift was accompanied by a significant cooling and displacement of forests by open grassy spaces such as savannah. With these paleoclimatic boundaries, two important stages in the evolution of early hominids coincide: 1) the isolation of Australopithecines near the myoplietocene border; 2) the separation of late Australopithecus and genus Homo near the Pliocene-Pleistocene boundary.

However, a number of anthropologists oppose simplifying the relationship between environmental changes and the formation of a bipede, since the change of forests by savannahs in Africa was "mosaic" both in time and space.

The serious problem of anthropology remains revealing the face between the first hominids and their animal ancestors. Most anthropologists believe that the taxonomic criterion of the family of hominids and its subdivisions should be morphological, paleontological. The morphological criterion implies the identification of those structural complexes, according to which a person is most different from other primates: uprightness, brain, arm, dentition. It is these systems that reflect changes in behavior, the degree of adaptation to labor and cultural activities.

A number of anthropologists recognize as the first undisputed hominid Homo habilis, having a straight path, a fairly high level of reassembly, signs of tooling on the brush. In addition, Homo habilis is associated with the tools of the Olduvai culture.

Often in the biological systematization, the basis is the morphological complex of erectness , which was formed at a faster pace than other hominization systems. It is the uprightness that is the first and necessary condition for the transition to work. Australopithecines already satisfied this main condition of the systematic criterion of hominids. According to available data, the possibility of using or even sporadic manufacturing of primitive tools by Australopithecus is not ruled out.

For the process evolution of hominids as a whole the following models are developed.

1. A gradual development model, & quot; phyletic gradualism & quot; (from the Greek phyle - genus, tribe) - the evolution of a group of organisms characterized by the progressive adaptation of individuals of successive generations under the action of directed (or moving) selection. The term & quot; phyletic evolution & quot; proposed by JG Simpson (1944). In phyletic evolution, the gene pool of a given species changes as a whole, without separating the daughter species (ie without divergence). As a result of phyletic evolution, there is a single non-branching line in the form of a continuous series of successive groups (populations, species), each of which is a descendant of the preceding group and an ancestor of the subsequent group, as in modern society.

2. The "discontinuous equilibrium" model, with the change of long periods of relative species stability (stasis) with periods of very rapid changes leading to the formation of new species.

Paleoanthropological materials actually do not contradict any of these possibilities. So, relatively stable species could be afar australopithecus and Homo erectus. An example of comparatively fast speciation is considered to be "transitional species" - Homo habilis and, perhaps, the archaic Homo sapiens.

In the case of hominids, even the term "catastrophic speciation" is sometimes used, which means a radical change in the direction of the evolutionary process, a sudden effect of a gradual shift in the correlation of forces in the unexpected direction (massive Australopithecus). An abrupt evolution can be associated with the development of new adaptive niches or with biospheric crises, since significant changes in the environment can increase the rate of evolutionary changes.

Obviously, the process of anthropogenesis should be regarded as a dialectical unity of intermittent and continuous. The contradiction of the above concepts and the corresponding models of the early stages of anthropogenesis is the result not only of the incompleteness of the paleontological record, but also the reflection of the real dialectical inconsistency of the evolutionary process.

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