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Arabian flights: early Eurasians diverged in 150 years

Posted on 2 Aug 2013 in Genetics, Human Origins, Journalism

Humanity’s dramatic race across the Old World after it left its African cradle has been told countless times. But for a true sense of the rapidity of events, look no further than the Y chromosome. The most comprehensive analysis of the Y yet shows that three key human groups appeared within just 150 years. Image: shabzillaa

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A potted history of the human evolutionary story

Posted on 21 Mar 2012 in Human Origins, Reviews

Ian Tattersall’s new book, Masters of the Planet, can be seen as a guide for the perplexed student of human origins. It walks the reader through 7 million years of human prehistory. Image: Barras

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Birth trauma etched in ancient female pelvis

Posted on 10 Jan 2012 in Evolution, Health, Human Origins, Journalism, Life

Trauma sometimes experienced during childbirth has been a problem faced by our ancestors for almost 4 million years. New evidence of pelvic damage in an ancient female skeleton shows we might be able to find signs of such injuries in the fossil record. Image: bixentro

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Evolutionary clues from ancestors’ brains?

Posted on 5 Oct 2011 in Human Origins, Reviews

Sometime in the distant past our ancestors’ brains grew sophisticated enough to ponder life’s big questions. In this book, Dean Falk explains how the study of those ancient brains – or at least, the impressions they left in the skulls they occupied – may help to provide an answer to one of the biggest questions: where did we come from? Image: Mamoritai

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Industrial revolution sealed Neanderthals’ fate

Posted on 28 Jul 2011 in Human Origins, Journalism, Life

Forget peaceful interbreeding: a new analysis of archaeological sites in south-west France has resurrected the idea that it was good old-fashioned competition that led to the demise of the European Neanderthals in the face of modern humans, and not the interbreeding which we now know occurred. Image: erix!

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