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Human Antiquity Textbook Notes - Ch 6

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Genevieve Dewar

Chapter 6 Key Conceptsto determine behavior of humans fossils and artifacts cannot be used but inferences can be madeanother source of information is living animals that act as models for prehistoric hominids behavior able to interpret animal behavior patterns that may resemble those of ancient humans Behavior Adaptation and Evolutionable to compare primates who we share a common ancestor ex All primates have prehensile hands therefore our prehensile ability comes from the same ancestor and serves the same basic functiontraits that are shared by multiple species through inheritance from a common ancestor are called homologies homologus traits dont share a common function ex Human arm and wing of a bat have different functions but are similar by virtue and have evolved from the same source the forelimb structure of an early animalthe wings of a bat and the wings of an insect have the same function but have evolved independently and are not similar in structure this is called analogies similar in function but unrelated evolutionarilygenes also pass on behavioral characteristics species with small brains have little behavioral variation and have no flexibilitycant really think organisms with larger and more complex brains can vary in behavior to cope with different situationsthey have behavioral potentialsthemes carried in their genetic codesrespond to environment by building on these potentialsex Taking in information from the outside remembering it and using the stored information in similar circumstancesable to think humans have builtin behavioral responsesbut are not programmed for particular ways of expressing behaviorunderstanding the nature and behavior of chimps and bonobo will provide insight on the origin of the behavior in humansbehavior is homologous similar behavior in humans and baboons are analogousour two species have evolved independently for 36 million years possible for behavior to have evolved separately under separate environmental conditionsmay be some variation in behavior pattern common to the primates and inherited from a common ancestortwo similar behaviors as analogous increases as the species being compared becomes less closely related not usually derived from a common ancestor but evolved independently as a trait of social interactioncomparing analogous behaviorscan help point out possible clusters of adaptive traitsneed to understand that the more evolutionarily distant the species the less useful the comparison use species as models for the origin and evolution of human behavior by looking at the homologies and analogiesother primatesethology the study of the behavior of organisms under natural conditions able to see how really adapted a species wasto learn the adaptations that our species today possessBaboons the 5 named species of genus Papio have been of interest to anthropologists because of its social organization having habitants in the East and South Africa they very habitat of our early hominid ancestorspast baboon society had a social order with large males being the dominate group suggesting the ancient hominids also behaved this waythe dominance and power is not because they are males but because of a network of social alliances where friendship exists among females and males the friendship is very strong that even male will aid his female friends infant even though he is not the father BUT the social position of the males may determine who mates with whom different social positions exist based on individuals experience skill and ability to manipulate othersmobilize allies the most competition exists among the females in a troop who try to gain access to resources that are necessary for survival for both them and their offspring
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