Boondock Saints Essay :: essays research papers
Category: essays research papers; Title: Boondock Saints Essay
Although our species, (named if we consider that Neanderthals and an are subspecies of but I will use in this essay to denote today’s humans), is the only survivor of the past several million years of human-line evolution, many of our cousins and ancestors were recognizably human. When did language begin, especially spoken language? Language certainly predated the appearance of . All great apes readily learn sign language, and even when monkeys chatter, the , and there is plenty of evidence that great ape vocalizations can . The and their corvid cousins can be hard to believe; they can solve some problems better than great apes can, and birds do not have a neocortex, but seems to function like the neocortex does. Becoming that began to . If fossils are sufficiently preserved, important anatomical features can provide key evidence for human abilities and behaviors. Turkana Boy, for instance, had his inner ear, which is responsible for balance, preserved well enough so that it provided more evidence that he did not spend time in trees (it is larger in primates that regularly climb). Similarly, the , which succeeded , apparently enabled keener hearing than its predecessors were capable of, and may have reflected the beginnings of spoken language. There is strong evidence that . As with many other human traits, the potential for language seems to have existed with monkeys (), and it kept developing more sophistication over vast stretches of time, and structural and cognitive changes interacted as human language developed into today’s version.
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Whatever the case may be, it appears clear that the population in Africa and Neanderthal population in Europe and the Middle East were isolated for tens of thousands of years, perhaps far more than 100,000 years, and humans used a toolkit like the Neanderthals’ until something happened between 70 and 50 kya. Just happened is a matter of great controversy, and in recent years, several disciplines have converged on the issue and are drawing a clearer picture today. Some key findings that shed light came from global DNA studies, linguistics partnering with evolutionary theory, and brain studies. In the past generation, as has been applied to many areas, a startling picture of the human journey has emerged. , probably for flexible power generation. For animals that reproduce sexually, the mother’s mitochondria are passed to her offspring, while virtually none comes from the father, if any. Geneticists can measure mutations in and approximate when two different animals shared a common ancestor, whether they belong to the same species or not. Similarly, regarding nuclear DNA, the produces a male mammal, and mutations in the Y chromosome can also be analyzed to estimate when two men shared the same ancestor. , but scientists have been aligning DNA results with fossil dates, which are considered more reliable, and have been resolving some limitations. But if the timing is suspect for such genetic analyses, far more confidence exists for descent relationships. Human DNA testing is a burgeoning business, used for everything from freeing to to examining the genetic heritage of the .