Origins Reconsidered: In Search of what Makes Us Human
In Origins Reconsidered, Richard Leakey, one of the most respected and influential scientists of our time, takes us on a brilliant and provocative journey through human history. Beginning with his landmark discoveries at Lake Turkana, and including his fascinating reassessment of how we became "human" - and what, after all, being human really means - Leakey concludes with a glimpse of what our evolutionary future may hold.
In 1984, Richard Leakey and his "Hominid Gang" of fossil hunters discovered fragments of a boy's skull that were more than 1.5 million years old. They soon unearthed virtually the entire skeleton of what was dubbed the "Turkana Boy" and recognized as one of the most significant paleoanthropological discoveries of all time.
But while his Turkana Boy caused a sensation in the media and throughout the world of science, Leakey himself was restless. Yes, the existing fossil record of our prehistory was impressive. But there were more elusive matters to consider.
For Richard Leakey the most compelling question is no longer "How did we physically evolve?" It is, instead, "How did we become human?" For this world-renowned paleoanthropologist it is a humbling reminder that no matter how complete the skeleton, how perfect the fossil, there is a gap in our knowledge. Our ancestors evolved from two-legged scavengers into creatures that create. They learned to make stone tools, to communicate, to build shelters, and to hunt for food.
This realization sparked Leakey to return to his earlier work - especially his 1977 book, Origins - to poke holes in his previous beliefs and to reflect anew on what makes us who we are. As he gently admits, considerations like these are usually left to philosophers, not scientists. But again and again, he is faced with his own guiding principle: "The past is the key to our future."
In this seminal work, Leakey incorporates ideas from philosophy, anthropology, molecular biology, and even linguistics, to investigate not only how we evolved anatomically, but how we acquired the qualities that make us human - consciousness, creativity, and culture.
89 pages matching origins reconsidered in this book
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Review: Origins Reconsidered: In Search of What Makes Us HumanUser Review - Ken Hasner - Goodreads
As someone who has a great interest in evolution and how are ancestors lives and environments shaped the lives we lead today, this was a must read. This was a follow up book that builds upon the ... Read full review
Review: Origins Reconsidered: In Search of What Makes Us HumanUser Review - Sara - Goodreads
Read this in 1992 having recently read Lucy's Child by fellow (and sometimes rival) paleoanthropologist Don Johanson. My reading was that Johanson makes a better argument, but I enjoyed reading both sides. Read full review
In Search of the Turkana Boy 1 To West Turkana
A Giant Lake
The Turkana Boy
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