Anth101 Kieran Cluchey Sep12,2012
The History of Origin Theories
Early Western Ideas:
Archetypes; lack of recognition of variants; a fixed type of species
Early Ideas About Natural History
Scala Naturae: The Great Chain of Being
Fixity of species:
o Every species was created in the past exactly as it appears toda.
o No new species can ever be created.
o No species have become extinct.
Archbishop James Ussher (1581-1656)
Calculated the age of the Earth through the passages of the Bible (literally counted the
generations) and came up with approximately 6000 years old.
Taxonomy: Systema Naturae (1735)
To this day, we still use his system of classification.
Believed in a young Earth; species fixed and not changing.
Came up with the hierarchal structure; Binomial nomenchlature; Kingdom (Animalia),
Phylum (Chordata), Subphylum (Yertebrata), Class (Mammalia), Order (Camivora),
Family (Canidae), Genus (Canis), Species (C. lupus).
Humans belong to the class of primata.
Originally we were grouped away from all of the great apes.
What is Evolution? Define.
The change of gene frequencies from generation to generation.
The era in which evolutionary ideas were taking hold:
Ships were travelling, the ship’s physician acted like a natural historian, picking up
materials wherever the ship went.
European’s travelling would have seen many bizarre new animals (kangaroos,
marsupials, ant-eaters, armadillos). Anth101 Kieran Cluchey Sep12,2012
With new species… perhaps not every species fit on the ark.
Age of Enlightenment
17 and 18 centures
Reason was advocated as the primary source of legitimacy and autho