Modern ideas about the biological and social factors...

Contemporary ideas about the biological and social factors of anthropogenesis

Since the time of Darwin, the idea has been established that the line of evolution leading to Homo sapiens , and the evolution line of the present great apes, had a common ancestor. In the 1960s and the 1980s, It is established that such a hypothetical ancestor lived 15-20 million years ago, and the divergence time of pongid and hominid was related to the Middle Miocene (about 14 million years ago). The common ancestor of all large hominoids were the East African Kenyapithecus (15-12 million years ago).

Since the early 1960's. In the studies of primatopoly and anthropogenesis, new promising methods are intensively developing: radiometric methods (potassium-argon, uranium and radiocarbon), thermoluminescence and electron paramagnetic resonance, as well as methods of nuclear and mitochondrial DNA. To denote studies of human evolution at the molecular level, the term "molecular anthropology" was proposed; (1962). Based on the data of molecular anthropology, repeated attempts have been made to determine the time of divergence of hominid and pongidic lines ("molecular", or "evolutionary", hours). Using the molecular clock is an important element of an integrated approach to the study of the stages of primatopoly and anthropogenesis.

Then, using molecular biology methods based on a comparison of the blood proteins of current anthropoid apes with human, it was shown that these two lines could not be split earlier than in the range from 2.70 to 8-9 million years ago, an average of 6-3 million years ago. In accordance with the Ewa hypothesis in the process of such a cleavage, a naked and hairy monkey should appear, and their genealogical similarity should have been very close. In Ethiopia, the remains of the most ancient of the ancestors of man known to science, who lived 4.4 million years ago, are found. His adults had a weight of about 30 kg and an increase of 1 m 20 cm. Such creatures were treated as the "missing link" in the theoretical scheme of Darwin between man and monkey. As a model ancestor human and chimpanzoid lines, some anthropologists also consider the dwarf chimpanzee of the small-scale pongid from the jungle of Equatorial Africa discovered by the American scientist H. Coolidge in 1933.

In 2010, a group of paleontologists led by Berger first discovered the remains of Australopithecus sediba (Australopithecus sediba) - in the cave of Malapa, South Africa, between the ancestors of humans and Australopithecus. The exact age of the fossils is calculated to be 1.977 million years. To the astonishment of the researchers, the brain of the Australopithecus sediba was more like a human being than the brain of its closest relatives, Australopithecus africanus. Brushes and feet of the australopithecus sediba represent a "mosaic" from the relatively "ancient" and modern bones: some of them resemble similar human bones, and some were "inherited" from the more ancient Australopithecus.

Researchers believe that their find should squeeze a clever man as the first representative of the genus Homo. However, other scientists believe that such conclusions should be further supported by comparisons of the Australopithecus sedib with other species of this genus - Australopithecus africanus and Australopithecus afarensis . The most plausible now seems to be the hypothesis of the late allocation of the human evolution line - from 8 to 5 million years ago.

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