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One of the earliest of the human genera, the Australopithecines, who walked upright and had modified hands, but in many other ways resembled a chimp.They were small (between 3 and 4 feet tall), had curved fingers, and a skull with a protruding jaw, a recessed cranium, and heavy ridges behind what are now the eyebrows.
Some form of Homo eventually recognized a relative permanence in mating that said something to the effect that this guy have a recognized relationship with this gal that permits them to mate, call them “their own,” and transfer property and prestige to their offspring. The increase in frontal material permitted our hominid ancestors to develop culture beyond the simple social learning cultures of macaques, chimps, and bonobos.
Our monkey and ape cousins have only the “monkey see—monkey do” cultural transmission.
Irrespective of whether amh replaced and/or interbred with Homo erectus and Neanderthals, there is considerable agreement on the particulars of very recent human evolution. erectus gave way to the large, vertical forehead of modern humans, permitting the brain to increase in size.
The skeletal structure attained a gracile form very close to modern humans.
Two cultural inventions altered the environment for amh.
The first was the domestication of certain animal species.Metabolically, the brain is a very expensive organ.Although it comprises only 2% of body weight, it consumes about 20% of the body’s metabolic resources.The reasons behind the evolutionary increase in brain size are not known, although there is no shortage of speculation.The need to fashion better tools, the requirements for sophisticated social interaction with conspecifics, the benefits of symbolic thought and language for competition between human groups have all been postulated as reasons for the intelligence of hominids.It is also possible that the causes for increased brain size shifted over time, say from social communication to symbolic and rational thought to competition.Whatever the reason(s), they must have been quite important.The reason for the development of upright posture is unknown, but it certainly permitted the Australopithecines to travel long distances, freed their hands to carry objects, and may even have allowed more efficient thermoregulation.Because of these advantages conferred by upright posture, many anthropologists suspect that the early Australopithecines were adapting to life on the savanna while the ancestors of today’s chimps remained in the forested areas of central Africa.Barak is no longer just Barak and is no longer just Thrug’s and Amalog’s son.He is also Gortog’s grandchild, even though Gortog, dead for several years, is a person unknown to the listener.