A persistent habit of equating modern domestic humans (that’s us, Homo sapiens sapiens) with Archaic Homo sapiens, which co-existed with Neanderthals, is a big mistake. We read that “We” (white males) wiped out Neanderthals because “We” were superior in brain power, innovation, intellectual capacity, social chit-chat and most outrageous, superior “social networking skills.” This insistence on proving that “We” were destined to rule the universe, is defended with near-hysteria when modern EuroAmerican male beliefs are challenged by facts:
Archaic Homo sapiens males and females were more like their Neanderthal neighbors than like us. In fact, we would likely find them to be indistinguishable.
An excellent article from the Leakey Foundation on changes to Homo sapiens from archaic to modern.
Link to full article: The Rise of Culture and the Fall of Testosterone
Craniofacial feminization in Homo sapiens. The 110-90 Ka year old male specimen Skhul 5 (left) showing the large brow ridges and long and narrow, masculinized face characteristic of MSA/MP (middle stone age/middle paleolithic)-associated modern humans. Recent male skull (African) on right. Photo credit- David Brill, used with permission. From Craniofacial Feminization, Social Tolerance, and the Origins of Behavioral Modernity by Cieri et al.
Why is “modern” an adjective applied to Archaic Homo sapiens (on left, which has Archaic features) when all other Archaic Homo are simply Archaic? The point that this photo comparison makes is that the MODERN Homo sapiens sapiens skull is very different to that of Archaic Homo sapiens. And yet, this prejudice that evolution had as its supreme goal, the Modern Social Human persists; therefore any creature that we imagine to foreshadow “Us” (a great example of magical and narcissistic thinking) is automatically granted behavior and “titles” (projection) that we believe characterize us.