Human Nature Essay Paper
Answer the below 2 questions. Each should be 350 words. The article for the assistance in your assignment is Attached.
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Question 1: In class Glynn Isaac’s Home Base/Food Sharing Model and Raymond Dart’s idea of the Osteodontokeratic were presented in relation to contrasting ideas about human nature. Where Isaac emphasized sharing and cooperation as defining characteristics of humanity Dart emphasized violence. In contemporary society a number of diet/health movements, such as the paleodiet or raw food movement, have used ideas about human origins to provide the basis for developing an ideal diet or exercise regime. Can you think of other contexts where ideas about human origins play a role in contemporary culture or our ideas of what it is to be human? If you have difficulty thinking of an answer you might use recent press material related to the discovery of a new hominin ‘Homo naledi’ in South Africa. A simple search of ‘Homo naledi’ should lead you to a wide range of material, or you may try to focus on news reports and how they handle this discovery.Human Nature Essay Paper
Question 2: Amanda Henry and her colleagues studied Neanderthal dental calculus to derive insight into Neanderthal diet. What material were they able to recover and why is this significant to our understanding of Neanderthal adaptations?Human Nature Essay Paper
Question 1: In class Glynn Isaac’s Home Base/Food Sharing Model and Raymond Dart’s idea of the Osteodontokeratic were presented in relation to contrasting ideas about human nature. Where Isaac emphasized sharing and cooperation as defining characteristics of humanity Dart emphasized violence. In contemporary society a number of diet/health movements, such as the paleodiet or raw food movement, have used ideas about human origins to provide the basis for developing an ideal diet or exercise regime. Can you think of other contexts where ideas about human origins play a role in contemporary culture or our ideas of what it is to be human? If you have difficulty thinking of an answer you might use recent press material related to the discovery of a new hominin ‘Homo naledi’ in South Africa. A simple search of ‘Homo naledi’ should lead you to a wide range of material, or you may try to focus on news reports and how they handle this discovery.
The existence of Homo naledi and its subsequent discovery in South Africa is proof of the presence of a new form of ethnic origin in humanity. This species of mankind was discovered only a few months ago after bones, dental remains as well as artefacts were found in a number of caves within the African continent (Hart, 2015). There are a number of various contexts that can be used to show how the human origin is closely related and associated with their culture. One of them is the immediate environment that a particular human species lived (Henry et al, 2011). Human Nature Essay Paper
For instance, there are some Homo naledi species that lived around the Mediterranean region while others were shown to live around places such as the Shanidar as well the oceanic spy area. In terms of diet, research shows that the Neanderthals that lived around these places survived on diets that mainly comprised of plant foods. What’s more, some of them were also known to consume food that included grass seeds, dates, legumes, tubers and other forms of unidentified plants. Additionally, some of the foods that the human species consumed was made of cooked plants that matched accordingly with macrobotanical remains as well as other soil phytoliths. The latter two were evidenced to be found in sites where the Neanderthals lived and co-existed. This nature of diet serves as enough proof that the homo naledi and the Neanderthals were human species who had a specific culture (Hart, 2015). Moreover, the fact that their food was prepared by cooking shows that they had a specific routine when it came to meal preparation (Henry et al, 2011).
At the same time, the origin of these people shows that there was a culture of using stone artefacts for carrying out various activities. For instance, some human species were shown to use stone items to grind the plants or grains they collected. Other species used the same stone itinerary for sharpening of their knives, cutlasses and other sharp bladed equipment (Henry et al, 2011). The homo naledi had their own adaptations in terms of the hominin diet, preparation and consumption. One of these adaptations is the cooking of foods obtained from plants that later led to an important discovery and incorporation of other plant varieties (Henry et al, 2011). In fact, this process also contributed to a broad spectrum revolution from a cultural dimension that created a platform for the exploitation of other plants and edible grains.
Question 2: Amanda Henry and her colleagues studied Neanderthal dental calculus to derive insight into Neanderthal diet. What material were they able to recover and why is this significant to our understanding of Neanderthal adaptations? Human Nature Essay Paper
Henry et al (2011) conducted an investigate study that sought to determine the relationship between diet and adaptation among the Neanderthals. The material discovered by these scholars ranged from teeth that was shown to have a lot of crusts and calculus that was heavily deposited. At the same time, Henry et al (2011) was able to study the mouth structure of Neanderthals using a novel technique. From this process, it was found out that there were microscopic remains of certain microfossils that contained starch from plants. Moreover, these remains also had phytoliths that showed that they had been initially preserved and fossilized. Hence, Henry et al (2011) concluded that the Neanderthal human species had been consuming and eating different kinds of plants. In addition, the researchers could be able to tell the nature of the grass seeds that they ate on a frequent basis (Henry et al, 2012).
Some common examples included legumes, barley and even wheat. On other occasions, some of them ate palm fruits that changed the structure of their dental formula and arrangement. Alternatively, Henry et al (2011) was able to notice some interesting trends and patterns with some of the starchy foods. For instance, they noticed that some of the microfossils that contained starch were somehow distorted. This form of distortion served a vital indicator of the kind of adaptation that Neanderthals were adapted (Madella et al, 2012). These scholars went ahead to do their own comparison with the locally available grains so as to compare and contrast reasons for this difference in teeth structure. In fact, various methods of food preparation were used such as roasting, baking, boiling and even drying.
These methods were used to compare the microfossils with what the common types of grains and how modern man prepared his food (Henry et al, 2012). These information is important towards the understanding of Neanderthal adaptation as it shows how they collected their food and how they cooked it. To this effect, one can be able to tell the striking differences and similarities between the Neanderthals and hominids as the most recent human species to be identified (Madella et al, 2012). This study has been able to illustrate that diet and cooking played an instrumental role in the continued existence of this human species.Human Nature Essay Paper
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Hart, T. C. (2015). Phytoliths: The Storytelling Stones Inside Plants. American Scientist, 103(2), 136-143.
Henry, A. G., Brooks, A. S., & Piperno, D. R. (2011). Microfossils in calculus demonstrate consumption of plants and cooked foods in Neanderthal diets (Shanidar III, Iraq; Spy I and II, Belgium). Proceedings Of The National Academy Of Sciences Of The United States Of America, 108(2), 486-491. doi:10.1073/pnas.1016868108
Henry, A. G., Ungar, P. S., Passey, B. H., Sponheimer, M., Rossouw, L., Bamford, M., & … Berger, L. (2012). The diet of Australopithecus sediba. Nature, 487(7405), 90-93. doi:10.1038/nature11185
Madella M, Jones MK, Goldberg P, Goren Y, Hovers E (2012) The exploitation of plant resources by Neanderthals in Amud cave (Israel): The evidence from phytolith studies. J Arch Sci 29:703–719. 13. Lev E, Kislev ME, Bar- Human Nature Essay Paper
Henry et al. Dental calculus
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