The Archeological Record Humans belong to biological order, Primates (“first rank”) Genetic, body chemistry similarity (98%+) to large apes Enormous differences in intelligence, ability to control natural world Discoveries in East Africa illustrate development of biological family of Hominids Australopithecines (“Lucy”)--4 to 1 MA (million years ago) Walked upright on two legs; well-developed hand --Stone tools; fire later Homo habilis (“handy human”) --2.5 MA, stone axes, larger brain Homo erectus-- 2.5 million-200,000 YA (years ago) sophisticated tools, control of fire, language skills, coordinated hunting Homo neanderthalensis--130,000 --30,000 YA same hunting/foraging lifestyle as Homo sapiens Homo sapiens--200,000 years ago, brain with large frontal region Spread throughout Eurasia about 100,000 YA importance of Ice age land bridges for migration Different forms of Hominids Between 3.5 and 5 million years ago, an adult hominid and a child made these footprints near Laetoli, Tanzania. Paleoanthropologists use stone toolmaking technologies to classify hominid cultures, because these artifacts have survived in relatively large numbers. The chopper on the top, of a pattern that dates from over two million years ago, was made by striking cobblestones against each other. Chimpanzees can be taught to make similar tools. The more elegant axeblade in the center predominated over much of the world between about 1.5 million and 150,000 years ago. Though the size, shape, and function of these tools varied, as the examples on the bottom show, the technology was surprisingly uniform around the world. No bone tools from the period survive. The Beginnings of Civilization Ice Age Culture/Society Paleolithic Communities Size dictated by resources, foraging lifestyle, requiring large range of movement Paleolithic (2.5 MA to 10,000 YA) vs. Neolithic--10,000 -3,000 YA Leadership: alpha males Probable gender roles-- reliable evidence? Male dominance “Liberation” of women for reproduction Women connected with the sacred, Venus figurines Diet: 3,000 calories per day! Varied diet--combination of meats, nuts, fruit, roots, tubers, etc., high intake of vitamin c (see assigned “Paleolithic Nutrition” article) The role of archeobotany, anthropology in analyzing plant-based foods Biological versus cultural adaptations to overcome plant defenses in seeds leaves (bitterness/toxicity) Heating/Cooking as a primary early cultural adaptation (learned) Hunting strategies during Upper Paleolithic (45,000-10,000 YA) Stampeding animals off cliffs or into lakes, bogs Scavenging versus active hunting (NWIA article) Development of the bow and arrow Domestication/use of dogs Evidence of net-hunting of small mammals Cave Art What was it for? Ritual, instructional uses Depiction of hunting scenes How was it made? Colors of ochre mixed with animal fat and applied with wood, bone, and animal hair Venus Figures: evidence from Dolni Vestonice--ritual uses? Illustration: Chauvet cave paintings Pont d’Arc, France, Chauvet Cave Chauvet Cave Chauvet Cave, details Chauvet horse painting, details ` Religion: Shamanism Depiction of people wearing animal masks Importance of Dance, Speech for human bonding Intermediaries between this world and a spiritual world Example: Chukuchi hunters of Siberia Social Stratification Evidence from burials of differences in grave goods Ability to adapt to extreme environments Inuit: development of blubber lamp San of the Kalahari: developed physical endurance to run down game in desert conditions Human Migrations Out of Africa first around 100,000 years ago Why? Rise in population due to use of fire in cooking More types of food available Development of new hunting technologies War: competition for resources Unclear origins of war Humans reach China: 67,000 years ago Australia: 50,000 years ago Europe: 40,000 years ago Migration to the Americas: around 20,000-15,000 years ago Land bridge across the Bering Strait as the last Ice Age ended Multiple groups or one migration? Clovis and other Paleoindian cultures--Meadowcraft (PA), Monte Verde, Chile, Big Eddy (MO), Minas Gerais, Brazil Mass extinction of 35 species of mammals around 10,000 years ago Questions about dating raised by archaeological research: Meadowcroft shelter Monte Verde in Chile Dated to between 9500 and 8000 BCE, the Clovis (or Llano) Culture of North America (so-called because their artifacts were first discovered at Clovis, New Mexico) was noted for its production of fluted flint projectiles. Once thought to be the earliest Paleo-Indian inhabitants of the Americas, the Clovis people now are being challenged for that position of primacy by archaeologists who have discovered evidence of earlier cultures in the Americas. During the last ice age the Laurentide ice sheet of North America extended as far south as New York.