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1_2 History of Research into Human Origins_Lecture script.pdf

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Simon Fraser University
ARCH 131
Dennis Sandgathe

UNIT 1INTRODUCTION TO HUMAN ORIGINS History of Resarch into Human OriginsPart II Slide 1 Title slide Slide 2 Early Studies of the Distant Past The Birth of Research into the Origins of Humans continued Slide 3 We left off Part I with the recognition among scientists that since Neandertals were too similar to us there must be another missing link between us and the great apes This idea of a missing link sparked a number of searchesThe most immediately successful was carried out by Eugene Dubois a young anatomist from the Netherlands working in SE Asia In 1891 on the island of Java he found the remains of several hominins that he named Pithecanthropus which means monkeylike man Dubois proclaimed to the scientific world that the missing link was foundsome were receptive to the idea but most were not They put these fossils on a separate branch from that leading to modern humans Of course today we understand that there is no one link between us and our very ancient apelike ancestorsthis was not a direct evolutionary line but a large complex evolutionary tree with many different branches and many different species in it
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