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Lecture 3

Anthropology 1026F/G Lecture Notes - Lecture 3: Homo Erectus, Richard Leakey, Punctuated Equilibrium

Course Code
ANTH 1026F/G
Ian Colquhoun

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Week 3: September 25, 2013 (page 69-79, 80-94, 95-108)
Modern Human Variation- the origin of Anatomically Modern Homo sapiens; and Are
Human Races Real?
Punctuated equilibrium: Evolution of a group of related species from a common
ancestors; the group of related species sharing the common ancestor is known as a
-Gradual change- directional change
Anthropology- biocultural approach; balance the two as much as possible
Models of the Evolution of Anatomically Modern Humans
- Two main models/ideas concerning evolutionary origins of anatomically modern
Homo sapiens.
oMultiregional model (Regional Continuity Model)
Minority view among paleoanthropologists
Anatomically Modern Humans (AMH) originated from long-
established regional populations of earlier hominims that exist in
various parts of the old world (Africa, Asia, Europ). – maintain
biological contact & gene flow provides continuity
Beginning with the geographic expansion of Homo erectus
from Africa to other parts of the Old World just under 2
million years ago.
In this model: Neandertals would be considered ancestral to
modern European/Middle Eastern populations
Small & vocal group of paleontologists- fossils provide examples of
anatomical continuity in various parts of the old world.
Migration and gene flow between regional populations which
prevents allopatric separation of the regional populations
Genetic theory: if separated for a long enough period of time the
oReplacement Model (Out of Africa Model)
Relative recent speciation
Originated in Africa within the last 300,000 years; where they
contact other Neanderthals; leads to no gene flow as they
competed and drove them to extinction
Our species migrated from Africa to other parts of the world
and replaced (out competed) other populations that existed
in those regions
Evidence: earliest fossil evidence (partial skulls Omo I and Omo II
at 195,000 years of age which lines up well with the date of origin
according to this model)
Discovered in 1967 by Richard Leakey: placed at 130k years
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