I wasn’t boring when I was young: I made this hat. (And it wasn’t for Halloween)
One hallmark of Homo erectus, a forerunner (nice avoidance of chaotic species designations for hominid fossils) of modern humans, was his stone tools, an advanced technology reflecting a good deal of forethought and dexterity. Up to now, however, scientists have been unable to pin a firm date on the earliest known evidence of his stone tool-making.
A new geological study, being reported Thursday in the journal Nature, showed that tools from a site near Lake Turkana in Kenya were made about 1.76 million years ago, the earliest of their ilk found so far. Previous dates were estimates ranging from 1.4 million to 1.6 million years ago.
Although no erectus fossils were found with the Turkana tools, a skull of that species was excavated last year in the same sediment level across the lake. This suggests that Homo erectus was responsible for these particular tools, which were made with what scientists refer to as Acheulean technology. The term connotes the type of oval and pear-shaped hand axes and other implements that were a specialty of early humans.
American researchers at the Lamont-Doherty Earth Observatory, part of Columbia University, established the age of the Turkana tools by dating the surrounding mudstone with a paleomagnetic technique. When layers of silt and clay hardened into stone, this preserved the orientation of Earth’s magnetic field at the time, and an analysis of the periodic polarity reversals and other records yielded the age of the site known as Kokiselei.
“I was taken aback when I realized that the geological data indicated it was the oldest Acheulean site in the world,” said the lead author of the report, Christopher J. Lepre, a researcher at Lamont-Doherty who also teaches geology at Rutgers University.
Northern Rocky Mountains, Southwest Montana & Greater Yellowstone Region
Course description: The MSU Summer Geology Field Camp is a rigorous 5-week (30 instructional days) summer field course focused on field mapping and data collection in a wide range of geologic settings. The course emphasizes time-tested methods and also includes an introduction to cutting-edge electronic mapping & data collection. Students will master geologic map-making and professional report preparation through intensive problem-based exercises. GEO 429R is a project-based research course and fulfills requirements for an upper division capstone field course in geologic mapping and field techniques.
Ask the “Dirt People” – very friendly and eager to help “reality-challenged” folks.
American Journal of Physical Anthropology
Supplement: Yearbook of Physical Anthropology
Volume 143, Issue Supplement 51, pages 94–121, 2010 Follow link to list of articles.
An excellent summation of:
Fossil evidence for the origin of Homo sapiens
Jeffrey H. Schwartz1,* and Ian Tattersall2
Copyright © 2010 Wiley-Liss, Inc.
Our species Homo sapiens has never been subject to a formal morphological definition, of the sort that would help us in any practical way to recognize our conspecifics in the fossil record. To understand why, a bit of history is helpful. The earliest surviving comparisons between humans and animals using both differences and similarities are those of the Greek polymath Aristotle (see review in Schwartz, 1999). On the subject of human distinctiveness, Aristotle wrote:
Although Aristotle’s comparisons were limited to humans and other living animals, he nonetheless articulated three major features—bipedalism directly, and the freeing of the hands in locomotory behavior, and the reasoning power of the brain by implication—that would long stand as defining characteristics of our species H. sapiens, and would provide as well the morphological cornerstones of the eventual discipline of paleoanthropology. In Aristotle’s view, a Prime Mover pushed the psyche of each organism, on its rung of the Ladder of Life (Scala Naturae), to follow its destiny and to strive to achieve impossible perfection. Although perched on the uppermost rung of this ladder, humans, no less than any other organism, failed to achieve a perfect state.
During the Dark Ages that replaced the Greco-Roman tradition of individual thinking and exploration with spiritual inquiry and divine revelation, the Scala Naturae was more or less directly transformed into the Great Chain of Being, in which an ascendant ordering from the inorganic through the organic world reflected the creation story of Genesis (Lovejoy, 1942). The early systematists who labored to elucidate this chain achieved their goals through equally idiosyncratic classifications. One way to recognize the nearly divine status of humans was to exclude them altogether from the classification. This route was chosen in the 16th Century by Konrad Gesner (the inventor of the genus rank), and also in the 17th Century by Francis Willughby (see Schwartz, 1999), who nevertheless had clearly considered human characteristics in his comparisons, describing as “man-like” a number of features he thought aligned the broad categories of “baboon” and “monkey.” In 1632, Ioannes Jonstonus (Jonstonus, 1632) became one of the first taxonomists to discuss humans directly in comparison with other animals, but only more than a century later were humans classified not in their own higher category, but in the same group as other man-like mammals.
In 1735, Carolus Linnaeus struck what to a religiously minded “scientific” world was a deep blow to the sacrosanct, by placing the species to which he belonged within a taxonomic group that John Ray had actually named for other animals: the order Anthropomorpha (Linnaeus, 1735). Only later (Linnaeus, 1758) did Linnaeus change the ordinal name to Primates, meaning “chiefs of creation.” Although raising the ire of other taxonomists, Linnaeus was really just taking a logical step. But as outraged as his fellow taxonomists were, Linnaeus had rejected neither special creation, nor the belief that his own species, which he dubbed H. sapiens, had been created last among Primates and in the image of its God. Still, it was not just in grouping humans in the same taxon as other mammals that Linnaeus broke with broad tradition. More specifically, it was in his presentation of the genus and species H. sapiens that Linnaeus abandoned his usual practice of providing a diagnosis for each taxon. For, his only comment about his own species was: nosce te ipsum (know thyself).
The Iliad is a visual book: unapologetic in its clarity on the battle field, unfathomable in the sheer quantity of characters and their specific genealogies; connections to specific land, family relations, trauma, and “fates.” If this level of depth and detail is an illusion; if these characters are inventions, figures in a “novel” and fictional, then how would a poet or writer, in a spoken performance or collected in written form, achieve this astounding act of creation? What is even more incredible is that objects are characters: helmets, swords, horses, chariots – each has an identity created by its history. That is not any helmet; that is the helmet won by the father of a specific warrior, at a specific battle, and it is recognized by a detailed physical description.
In other words, there is nothing abstract or generic about The Iliad. What may seem tedious or improbable, such as lengthy side stories and background, or speeches made in the midst of battle are absolutely necessary to Homer’s audience. The world that he presents is literal, factual, scientific and specific: “101” ways to die; with the anatomical details supplied. The body is revealed and never denied: hormones, adrenalin, fear and stress are consequences of existence. A man must do this terrible thing – be a killer, because he will be known by a personal history of kills, trophies and bravery. Otherwise, he simply does not exist. In addition amazingly accurate descriptions of natural processes are included as “demonstrations” of forces at work in nature and in human lives.
There are no apologies; war is about booty – armor and weapons stripped from corpses; horse, cattle, sheep and pigs are stolen; women are sought as slaves and trophies. These are specific women who have names, personal histories and attachments, genealogies and traumas. Modern people reject the idea that thousands of men, ships and provisions, and years of warfare and death would be expended on “rescuing” Helen, even if she is the wife of a king. That’s not the point at all. She is Helen of Sparta, and to her husband she is not generic, but a “prize” in her own right and an irreplaceable component of his glory – literally a part of him, whether we see it that way or not.
The Greek gods are peculiar: humans with power that tempts them to be foolish, childish, out-of-control, vindictive and remarkably subject to physical wounds and pain. They are really not gods at all, but early abstractions in human thought. Their only claim to godhood is immortality; immortality indicates depth of existence. Ancestors became collective models synthesized from real people. A pantheon is a family of characters whose origin recedes beyond memory, who exist as archetypes that benefit mortal individuals, influencing them through physical means. The female gods are barely different from the males in their behavior, and other than Zeus, act as they see fit. There is no lack of deference to the goddesses on the part of the warriors either. Athena’s power is no joke.
Tattoos are a popular and legitimate form of self-expression and have become mainstream, that is, moved up the social hierarchy.
Personally, to “get a tattoo” has no appeal: it’s one of those activities that is a “blank spot” in my conception of “things to do” to express myself… way too social. I have no idea how other Aspergers or introverts regard tattoos.
Tattoos for “girls” that express social norms, especially vulnerability and eternal bonds of friendship.
The Navy is easing its tattoo policy in a bid to recruit and retain sailors from the millennial generation, of whom more than 1 in 3 sport body art. Sailors will be allowed to have neck tattoos, sleeves and even markings behind their ears under the new policy, the most lenient of any military service. Mar 31, 2016
Couples? Marriage? Until Death? Hedging your bet…
For a history of tattoos in Ancient Greek and Roman cultures, go to:
Let’s just accept the fact that sexual assault occurs: yes, the predator is usually male, and the prey female, but all types of assault occur, and the “victim” can be of either gender, age, race or ethnicity…
Why is sexual assault any different in infliction of pain, injury, psychological trauma and damage to family and community as well as the terror inflicted on the victim? This IS a critical question.
Isolating sexual assault from “ordinary” assault intensifies the portrayal of women as incompetent targets of male aggression and as inferiors – just one more category of male property. . This is typical of the religious hangover that persists in all areas of American culture. A woman’s reproductive apparatus is the property of a male, the same as any “farm animal”. Her uterus is of value as the vehicle for male genetic and social continuance. The Bible says so; it must be so!
Backing up this claim is like shooting fish in a barrel: MORE Bible QUOTES at: ValerieTerico.com
So – to sexually assault a girl or woman is to “insult” a man’s property, whether or not it’s the husband, promised husband, father or any male relative. Since ALL WOMEN are owned by males, A MAN “owns” her “reproductive parts” and capabilities. HE must assure paternity by controlling virginity.
I’m a woman and claim my body, mind and physical-psychic boundaries to be mine and mine only. This is not as common a declaration as one might hope. Young women are being taught that their DESTINY is to be passive victims, not only by the relentless pop culture depiction of even young children as “whores” whose only function is to be pornographic objects, but by elite educated women who have their own agenda: the use of genuine social injustice as a political weapon – to increase their own position in the social hierarchy.
to be continued…
The “trend” by certain women of “coming out of nowhere,” ten or twenty years after a supposed sexual crime, is deplorable and is a slap in the face to all women. If the women had endured some type of sexual assault by a man who had, or presently has a public life, but “let him go” without rebuke or filing a report, then those women are complicit in that man’s assumption that he can “get away with it.” How many of those woman who belatedly claim to be “victims” have exposed other women to similar or worse abuse during a lapse of action over a span of ten to twenty years?
The suspicion of ulterior motives is greatly increased by sudden and opportunistic complaints of “inappropriate touching,” and other vague offenses so long after the alleged event – acts of typical “risk-taking” by males that every female ought to be made aware of as standard male behavior, and which must be responded to IMMEDIATELY.
Chances are, this “creep” is a “pot-shot” risk taker who has repeatedly approached many women. In one instance at least, my “verbal outing” of a boss’s predatory behavior was “permission” for other women to speak out about his serial sexual advances. And contrary to “private” complaints to company-corporate personnel, which often punish the “whistleblower,” or ignore the situation, a public notice of sexual harassment must be dealt with. The embarrassment of public exposure usually is sufficient to stop the behavior of a socially-aware neurotypical male. And no, I was never threatened with losing my job or other retaliation. In fact, often it was a relief to responsible executives who had “done nothing” about previous complaints.
In male neurotypical language, this identifies you as LEGITIMATE PREY. “I’m powerless” or even, “I deserve to be maltreated.” Be clear and honest as to what actually happened; don’t reinforce male prejudices about women as “overly” emotional wreckage; as problem employees who cannot handle themselves rationally in a stressful work environment.
The New York Times /The Opinion Pages