Do animals make us human?

Do animals make us human?

What made us evolve from primitive humans into modern humans?

Pat Shipman, a palaeoanthropologist - someone who studies ancient humans - thinks that our knowledge of animals is what made us evolve from primitive humans into the species we are today.

Check out this cartoon which explains his idea (short advert first):

Not everyone agrees. Some scientists think that the development of language is the most important factor in ancient humans becoming the species we recognise today. Other scientists believe that the creation of weapons was a huge factor in our species' development.

Caveman and computer_78486334

What triggered the evolution of humans into the modern species we see today?

At the moment, these are theories. It's a chicken and egg situation - which came first, the development of language or the domestication of animals? What about our social development - living in large groups - could that be important? We just don't have enough evidence to show which was the key factor in the development of humans.

For more information, see the New Scientist website.

To find out more about anthropology careers, go to Discover Anthropology.

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