A New Human: The Startling Discovery and Strange Story of

A New Human: The Startling Discovery and Strange Story of the "Hobbits" of Flores, Indonesia I knew that homo floresiensis hunted dwarf stegadons, but apparently they also hunted komodo dragons Imagine that three feet tall and taking down mini elephants and giant lizards For a long time I had my doubts about whether they were a separate species of human and gave into the idea that they were all pathological specimens, a whole tribe of microcephalic down syndrome autists I think I let myself believe that because I wanted them to be a separate species and anything I want is automatic I knew that homo floresiensis hunted dwarf stegadons, but apparently they also hunted komodo dragons Imagine that three feet tall and taking down mini elephants and giant lizards For a long time I had my doubts about whether they were a separate species of human and gave into the idea that they were all pathological specimens, a whole tribe of microcephalic down syndrome autists I think I let myself believe that because I wanted them to be a separate species and anything I want is automatically bad or wrong But this book convinced me that homo floresiensis is a different species and that the world is a wider and crazier place than we give it credit for.The book does a great job of outlining the finds, breaking down the discoveries and finding meaning in them, as well as giving an exciting recount of their discovery and the subsequent politicking and academic backbiting that a discovery of such a magnitude entails This book is a very quick read at just a couple of hundred pages, and while this was an interesting account of the discovery of the small diminutive fossil Homo floresiensis in the Liang Bua limestone cave on the Indonesian island of Flores, the book is largely a description of the controversy that erupted among members of the academic community regarding the interpretation and role of the floresiensis fossils in better understanding hominin evolution In fact, upon finishing the book, I still r This book is a very quick read at just a couple of hundred pages, and while this was an interesting account of the discovery of the small diminutive fossil Homo floresiensis in the Liang Bua limestone cave on the Indonesian island of Flores, the book is largely a description of the controversy that erupted among members of the academic community regarding the interpretation and role of the floresiensis fossils in better understanding hominin evolution In fact, upon finishing the book, I still really didn t have a better understanding of exactly what these fossils mean and where the research with respect to the direction that southeastern Asian paleontology anthropology is headed Clearly, the discoverers of Homo floresiensis, Mike Morwood and his team, feel like they were badly used by many in academia, and that s too bad I guess I would have liked a bitof scientifically rigorous presentation and discussion of the data and evidence that led Morwood and others to believe that floresiensis is a hominin deserving of species status and what the implication of these fossils is upon the Out of Africa or Multiregional theories of hominin dispersal and evolution According to other scientific journal articles, and references in other books, it seems that these fossils are likely quite important tofully understanding our human origins and this book, unfortunately, just didn t really do all that much toward clarifying things Hopefully there will beto come on this fascinating topic in the near future Despite all of the academic bickering and turf war aspects of this discovery, I have to say that it was really interesting to read about how much work is associated with not only finding fossils like these, but then moving through the academic and professional peer review processes related to description, classification and interpretation Unfortunately, it isn t all just science there s a lot of politics involved too This book the revised version, dated 2007 tells the story of the discovery of Homo floresiensis hobbit remains on the island of Flores, the analyses to discover who these people were and what relationship they had with Homo sapiens, and the jealous scientists who tried to undermine the discoverers credibility and who damaged the fossils.This book covers the fossils themselves as well as the history of human, hobbit, crop, and animal arrivals and extinctions on the island It also discusses This book the revised version, dated 2007 tells the story of the discovery of Homo floresiensis hobbit remains on the island of Flores, the analyses to discover who these people were and what relationship they had with Homo sapiens, and the jealous scientists who tried to undermine the discoverers credibility and who damaged the fossils.This book covers the fossils themselves as well as the history of human, hobbit, crop, and animal arrivals and extinctions on the island It also discusses the modern day people of Flores and their lifestyle One of the most interesting and thought provoking books I have read in some time. A quote from the book, The most important find in paleoanthropology for 50 years In parts, there seems to be a little too much emphasis on the politics and wranglings between the International Indonesian labs but the arguments against genetic morthology are solid and well explained meaning we do indeed have a new human who incredibly lived until 12,000 years ago How equally incredible that JRR Tolkien s masterpiece has been echoed to some extent in this scientific find, even down to the Hobb A quote from the book, The most important find in paleoanthropology for 50 years In parts, there seems to be a little too much emphasis on the politics and wranglings between the International Indonesian labs but the arguments against genetic morthology are solid and well explained meaning we do indeed have a new human who incredibly lived until 12,000 years ago How equally incredible that JRR Tolkien s masterpiece has been echoed to some extent in this scientific find, even down to the Hobbits large feet and fire breathing dragons the Komodos which lived on the island of Flores Tolkien would have been lost for words An interesting, and at times eye opening, first hand account of the discovery of Homo floresiensis, the first of multiple discoveries this century that have really shaken up our understanding of the human story A fairly easy read too. Really interesting book about the discovery of Homo floresiensis by one of the paleoanthropologists who found him Lots of intrigue about the politics around the discovery and the battle over the bones between scientists. In October , a team of Australian and Indonesian anthropologists led by Mike Morwood and Raden Pandji Soejono stunned the world with their announcement of the discovery of the first example of a new species of human, Homo floresiensis, which they nicknamed the Hobbit This was no creation of Tolkien s fantasy, however, but a tool using, fire making, cooperatively hunting person The Morwood and his colleagues revealed about the find, the astonishing it became standing only three feet tall with brains a little larger than a can of cola, the Hobbits forced anthropologists and everyone to reconsider what it means to be humanMorwood s work was no ordinary academic exercise Along the way he had to tread warily through the cultural landscape of Indonesia he has an embarrassing mishap with some hard to chew pork and he demonstrated that sometimes the life of a real archaeologist can be a bit like Indiana Jones s when he risked his neck in an ocean going raft to experience how ancient Indonesians might have navigated the archipelagoEven , Morwood had to navigate the rock shoals of an archaeological bureaucracy that could be obtuse and even spiteful, and when the Hobbits became embroiled in scientific controversy as no find of such magnitude could avoid it proved easy for Morwood to get nearly swamped with trouble Finds were stolen and damaged, and the backbiting was fierce But the light of science, once brightened, is difficult to dim, and the story of the indefatigable Morwood s fight to defend his find discovery is an inspiration 2004 book We need a sequel.The book is easy to read. It wasn t that startling or strange Most of the book is the author discussing why he believes it s part of the homo lineage and his fights for the credit and rights of the discovery Yet another reminder for why I try to avoid academia.


Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *