May 2, 2010

The Neanderthal Within

I hear that if you want the background on a big story in the science news that will break later this month, check out chapter 2 of Cochran and Harpending's 2009 book, The 10,000 Year Explosion.

67 comments:

kudzu bob said...

I wonder if this post will prompt a peevish Whiskey/Evil Neocon/Testing99 to chime in once more with, "Who the hell is Gregory Cochran?"

Dahlia said...

This is from the post you linked to (Hawks) the last time you brought this up (and before it turned into a thread on gingers) in which he said more was to come in the "not-too-distant future":

"Neanderthals may have interbred with humans"

Genetic data points to ancient liaisons between species.

The researchers arrived at that conclusion by studying genetic data from 1,983 individuals from 99 populations in Africa, Europe, Asia, Oceania and the Americas. Sarah Joyce, a doctoral student working with Long, analyzed 614 microsatellite positions, which are sections of the genome that can be used like fingerprints. She then created an evolutionary tree to explain the observed genetic variation in microsatellites. The best way to explain that variation was if there were two periods of interbreeding between humans and an archaic species, such as Homo neanderthalensis or H. heidelbergensis.

I understand that there is more to come on this subject in the not-too-distant future, and in this case I don't have anything on paper to go on.

http://johnhawks.net/weblog/reviews/evolution/introgression/joyce-dalton-interbreeding-2010.html

Anonymous said...

And yet not all members of the human species are descended from the "Neanderthal within."

Thus, the Out-of-Africa Theory dies a quick, ironic, painful death. Painful because one can already imagine the howls from the same folks on the left who have persecuted Stephanie Grace.

Ironic, because these are the also the same people who thrill obsessing about diversity and endangered species.

Mark said...

When are they going to test the hypothesis regarding Ashkenazi intelligence? It's not like they're aren't enough rich Jews in the world who would get a kick out of funding such a study. ;-)

Luke Lea said...

I have it around the house somewhere. Can you remind we what it is about?

Anonymous said...

Steve, please tell us what you "hear" that book is about.

Melykin said...

I've read The 10,000 Year Explosion. It is a fascinating book. I don't remember what chapter 2 was about, and I've given the book to my son so I don't have it now.

As I recall the book is mainly about how humans have evolved since the development of agriculture. Quite fascinating.

Maybe I'll order it for my Kindle so I can read it again. (I didn't have a Kindle at the time I bought the book the first time).

The whole idea of the book is, of course, politically incorrect. As I recall they even tiptoe around the suggestion that agriculture and towns caused people to evolve towards being sort of "domesticated", as compared to hunter gatherers.

Anonymous said...

"When are they going to test the hypothesis regarding Ashkenazi intelligence? It's not like they're aren't enough rich Jews in the world who would get a kick out of funding such a study. ;-)"

I remember reading an interview where Cochran stated something to the effect that the people who oversee the relevant databases in Israel and the US don't really want to test the theory (probably for fear that researching the genetic basis for higher Jewish intelligence would stoke the fires of anti-semitism.

Anonymous said...

Apparently Steve has heard that Svante Paabo will soon deliver the goods -- some evidence of Neanderthal DNA that has made its way into humans. This has been whispered about for a while.

http://www.google.com/search?aq=0&oq=svante+paabo&sourceid=chrome&ie=UTF-8&q=svante+paabo+neanderthal+genome

Anonymous said...

Here is the news summary from Nature:

http://www.nature.com/news/2010/100420/full/news.2010.194.html

Anonymous said...

Well, if you read Chapter 2, the big idea is "introgression."

I imagine that is what it will be about.

Anonymous said...

The secret word is "mudshark," errr, no, I mean "introgression."

Anonymous said...

Well, I'm confused. Obviously I know nothing of anthropology and following these stories and links has left me a bit dizzy.

I read Peter Frost's April 29 post on the matter ("Cheap Shots and Collateral Damage")

http://evoandproud.blogspot.com/

and from it, I gathered that Cochran, Harpending, and Hawks were (or is it "are"?) multiregionalists. Frost's post says that so far preliminary genomic scans show "nothing."

http://evoandproud.blogspot.com/

Yet, I read the link Peter provided to John Hawks' blog and while Hawks said he'd say little right now, he gave an indication that the multiregionalists may not yet be done (and there is the Dalton research).


Are Cochran, Hawks, Harpending considered multiregionalists or something between the multiregionalists and Out of Africa propronents?

Now comes Steve's post.

Can someone simplify this for the unwashed?

Anonymous said...

Re: Out-of-Africa Theory

Listen, the supporters of the infamous Rosenbergs had a saying: "Whatever it is they did, they didn't do it."

The modern update of this intellectual argument is: "We create our own reality."

In other words, they don't give a damn about the truth.

Anonymous said...

previous poster said,

"Thus, the Out-of-Africa Theory dies a quick, ironic, painful death."


but Peter Frost says,

"The triumph of the ‘Out of Africa’ model will be heavily politicized. Although I support this model, I feel nothing but shame for the cheap shots that many other adherents have made. A common one has been to cast multiregionalists as 'racists.'"

Help.

Anonymous said...

peevish Whiskey/Evil Neocon/Testing99

So were teh hawt young Sapiens chicks only too happy to spread their legs for the brutish Neanderthalensis alpha males?

catperson said...

Does it really matter if some tiny percentage of human DNA comes from neandertals? It's like learning that some blond blue eyed person is 1% black. It's so little as to be trivial and the Out of Africa hypothesis remains essentially correct.

Anonymous said...

So were teh hawt young Sapiens chicks only too happy to spread their legs for the brutish Neanderthalensis alpha males?

Most theories argue that it was Sapiens males interbreeding with Neanderthal females, not vice versa. The argument is that Sapiens females wouldn't have been able to successfully birth the larger hybrids, whereas Neanderthal females wouldn't have had size issues birthing them.

Anonymous said...

Most theories argue that it was Sapiens males interbreeding with Neanderthal females, not vice versa. The argument is that Sapiens females wouldn't have been able to successfully birth the larger hybrids, whereas Neanderthal females wouldn't have had size issues birthing them.

ACK!?!

Nerdy, weaselly, introverted little Sapiens betas were partaking of the nasty with big, bad, buxom, hairy Neanderthalensis gangsta ho's?

Whiskey ain't gonna like theory.

Anonymous said...

> Does it really matter if some tiny percentage of human DNA comes from neandertals? It's like learning that some blond blue eyed person is 1% black. It's so little as to be trivial and the Out of Africa hypothesis remains essentially correct.

One nucleotide of DNA can make a vast difference. The great bulk of nucleotides make almost no difference at all. A segment that introgressed into sapiens would be likely to have been positively selected, and might have had a greater or lesser importance rather than being unimportant.

Put it this way, if there is one segment of neanderthal in sapiens, that segment is very likely to be the one neanderthal segment out of the whole neanderthal genome that was most useful for sapiens.

Anonymous said...

"Thus, the Out-of-Africa Theory dies a quick, ironic, painful death. Painful because one can already imagine the howls from the same folks on the left who have persecuted Stephanie Grace."

Nah. Neanderthals' ancestors came from Africa. Therefore they are Africans. As the same has been claimed for clearly Eurasian adapted Eurasians (even though it is ludicrous), so will the same be claimed for Neanderthals.

The Neanderthal thing, if it pans out, will just be appropriated by the people who currently use Out Of Africa in a political fashion.

They'll use it to promote between population breeding (not inherently a good or bad thing, I might add, but a thing which they have irrational and unquestionable opinions about and which in their irrationality and unquestionability lie the potential for injustice).

They'll also use it to rhetorically assuage European/American fears of their ethnic group being bred out of existance ("See, if even the Neanderthals survived in a sense and gave rise to you, what are you worrying about?")

Anonymous said...

Combining your two recent posts.

The Neanderthal Within causes
Rage of the Privileged Classes.

Paul Mendez said...

I would not be surprised in the least to learn that Homo Sapiens males mated with Neanderthal females.

It is a proven scientific fact that Homo Sapiens males will have sex with ANYTHING given half a chance: women, men, themselves, animals, vegetables, raw liver, inflatable dolls, vacuum cleaners...

And if Cro-Magnons had already invented beer, watch out!

Anonymous said...

They'll also use it to rhetorically assuage European/American fears of their ethnic group being bred out of existance ("See, if even the Neanderthals survived in a sense and gave rise to you, what are you worrying about?")

They already did this in the final episode of Battlestar Galactica.

Anonymous said...

"Does it really matter if some tiny percentage of human DNA comes from neandertals? It's like learning that some blond blue eyed person is 1% black."

Yes, it certainly does, *if* the interbreeding resulted in changes that eventually distinguished this offspring from others on the globe and especially *if* those differences even come close to being related to cognitive function (a possibility the academic elites want to avoid discussing publicly because they are wussies). And because the interbreeding would have occurred with the species occupying EUROPE. Oooooooo, that really scares them.

God forbid that populations occupying different niches developed differently from one another due to selection pressures. That would upset the old apple cart containing their aphorism that everyone is the same. After all, to the pc elite "same" means "equal." Thus, "not same" means "not equal."

Yeah, no logic there ...but that pretty much sums up the elite's homage to logic. They don't want to look at possibilities. Pretty pathetic for people who claim to honor intellectual curiosity, knowledge, and freedom of thought and expression.

ben tillman said...

Does it really matter if some tiny percentage of human DNA comes from neandertals? It's like learning that some blond blue eyed person is 1% black. It's so little as to be trivial.

You have now way of knowing that. In fact, I would bet that there are some people with a good bit of Neanderthal DNA.

Mark said...

What are you basing that on, Ben? The fact that some people "look" Neanderthal? Please.

I agree that whatever people find, it will just be appropriated by the One People One Planet types to further their ideology.

The one possible exception is if Coxhran and Harpending are right, and Neanderthal genes responsible for enhanced cognitive functioning introgressed into the human population but failed to spread south of the Sahara. I feel like that would give a lot of people pause.

But as we haven't even been able to pin down any genes in humans related to intelligence, I don't see why we should suddenly hit upon a Neanderthal variant.

Steve Sailer said...

Well, my top of the head guess would be that if modern out-of-Africa humans picked up any useful genetic adaptations from Eurasian Neanderthals, the first place to look would be for cold weather adaptations.

Of course, that might not be the end of the story, either. But ways to survive winter would a good starting place.

catperson said...

"Yes, it certainly does, *if* the interbreeding resulted in changes that eventually distinguished this offspring from others on the globe and especially *if* those differences even come close to being related to cognitive function (a possibility the academic elites want to avoid discussing publicly because they are wussies). And because the interbreeding would have occurred with the species occupying EUROPE. Oooooooo, that really scares them."

Actually it should really scare you, and anyone else who believes that whites are highly evolved as neandertal admixture in the European race would suggest that whites are the most primitive people on Earth.

Noah said...

Hmm, this explains all the Neanderthals that live in my apartment complex...

Anonymous said...

Blogger catperson said...

Actually it should really scare you, and anyone else who believes that whites are highly evolved as neandertal admixture in the European race would suggest that whites are the most primitive people on Earth.


Hmmm, it would seem that you actually know little about evolution.

What gives you the impression that Neadertals were not highly evolved?

In real terms, modern Africans, Eurasians and Neadertals are/were all highly evolved and are derived from ancestral populations. Similarly, Australian Aborigines are highly evolved.

The difference is the environments they have been selected for; Eurasians have spent much more time being selected for large scale civilizations.

However, if it all goes to shit and Eurasians have to go back to a primitive lifestyle, lots of them are going to die and different selection pressures will apply.

Anonymous said...

"Actually it should really scare you, and anyone else who believes that whites are highly evolved as neandertal admixture in the European race would suggest that whites are the most primitive people on Earth."

No, Catperson, "it" (WHATEVER the truth about human evolution is ) doesn't scare me at all. I don't think one explanation is someone better than another for mankind. What IS better for mankind is the truth.

It's those who live in fear that one explanation about the orgins of modern man is somehow "better" than another explanation who believe they have something to fear. It's their twisted political views that make them pull for one answer over another. If they had any sense, they wouldn't care. They need to divest their political notions from science.

However, they don't have sense and they do care so they pull and pull for a "truth" that suits their needs, much as one pulls for a favorite football team on Sunday. They don't give a damn about inquiry and good science. In fact, they block discussion, deny grants, and seek to destroy careers if they fear anything in science will disrupt their Camelot castles in the sky.

As for me, I think those Neanderthals Reds were mighty sexy brutes. Maybe I wouldn't have minded at all being taken by one, but as someone suggested, if there was interbreeding, it's more likely that the male homo sapien mated with the female Neanderthal. (Typical man--will get it on with anything if he's desperate.)

Alas, I'm Euro white with some Amerindian, but it bothers me not
at all that Asians beat me to a pulp in math; however, I am concerned about my inability to process carbs very well, and if that is at all related to my being part Amerindian, it would have been nice to know decades ago and my pancreas would have thanked me, and I would have thanked the researchers who provided the medical profession with the evidence/explanations that some people are more likely than others to develop a problem with insulin production. Truth, you see, helps manking. (Oh, and it doesn't bother me that cognitively, my Indian ancesters might not have been as bright as people of other groups.)

And "primitive"? Ah, primitive schimitive. Who the hell cares? Just go after truth.

Lastly, you might want to reconsider the use of "highly evolved" in your clause "and anyone else who believes that whites are highly evolved."

"Highly evolved" means nothing out of context, does it? Makes it sound as if you believe some population groups are "lowly evolved," not crediting them with evolved fitness for their environment.

It sounds like maybe YOU might be pulling for a certain explanation over another.

You're not one of them, the pc police that is, are you?

If you are, you might want to ask yourself why. What's to be afraid of?

catperson said...

"What gives you the impression that Neadertals were not highly evolved?"

They emerged earlier in Earth's history than humans did. Rushton argues that evolution is progressive.

"In real terms, modern Africans, Eurasians and Neadertals are/were all highly evolved and are derived from ancestral populations."

Incorrect. Africans are ancestral to Caucasoids who are ancestral to East Asians. East Asians are highly evolved; the new and improved race.

"Highly evolved" means nothing out of context, does it? Makes it sound as if you believe some population groups are "lowly evolved,""

I do.

Noah said...

Ah, to be a white racist. Condemned forever to believe that you are dumber than most Asians and wimpier and less masculine than most blacks...

Anonymous said...

catperson says:

Incorrect. Africans are ancestral to Caucasoids who are ancestral to East Asians. East Asians are highly evolved; the new and improved race.


Ahhh, now I know you do not know what you are talking about. Would you care to provide some references to support that claim?

Modern sub-Saharan Africans are not ancestral to Caucasians or East Asians (by your analysis, hmmm, why do I get the impression that you are an East Asian?), rather, we are all derived from an ancestral African Population (just what did you think Out of Africa meant?). However, some aspects of multi-regionalism might also be true.

catperson said...

"Modern sub-Saharan Africans are not ancestral to Caucasians or East Asians (by your analysis, hmmm, why do I get the impression that you are an East Asian?), rather, we are all derived from an ancestral African Population (just what did you think Out of Africa meant?)."

But this ancestral African population from which caucasoids evolved would probably be classified as part of the negroid subspecies (depending on how broad your defenition of negroid is) if it were still alive today. Similarly, the ancestral middle eastern population from which the new and improved mongoloids evolved would be classified as caucasoid.

Its no different from saying mammals evolved from reptiles. No mammals did not evolve from any modern species of reptiles, but they evolved from reptiles nonetheless.

rob said...

They emerged earlier in Earth's history than humans did. Rushton argues that evolution is progressive.

Then Rushton is wrong. Evolution is adaptation. Consider species no one really reacts to emotionally. What species of bat is most evolved?

Incorrect. Africans are ancestral to Caucasoids who are ancestral to East Asians. East Asians are highly evolved; the new and improved race.

Actually, I talked to a black dude just today. I asked him if he was my ancestor. He was all like "No, I'm younger than you." Sure, that didn't happen, but there are black people younger than me. Therefore they aren't my ancestors.

When a population splits for some reason or another, evolution does not grind to a halt within whichever one you decide is the original population. We can tell by looking at East Asians that they aren't descended from Swedes. Evolution happens within populations. According to Cochran and Harpending, brow ridges went from common in Europe during the Bronze Age to very rare today. Lactose tolerance too. Cranial features changed from medieval to modern brits. It makes more sense to say that 'Caucasoids' and East Asians evolved from a proto-Asian-Caucasoid population. First because it's true, and secondly because there are novel adaptations in both populations that aren't shared with the other. East Asians didn't lose adult lactose tolerance, they never had it.

Not to mention, Linda, you don't have a way of determining what populations are new (and improved) races and which ones are what you called subraces. You think Jews are a new race evolved from Caucasians, but Native Americans are not a new race evolved from Asians.

The bat question is not rhetorical. Which bat species is most evolved?

Anonymous said...

Africans are ancestral to Caucasoids who are ancestral to East Asians. East Asians are highly evolved; the new and improved race.

Better than that: East Asians are ancestral to American Indians (who have "split off" from them with the same loss of genetic information as Eurasians to Africans). This is why Amerinds are such amazing and accomplished people relative to East Asians! ;) More highly evolved...

Svigor said...

However, if it all goes to shit and Eurasians have to go back to a primitive lifestyle, lots of them are going to die and different selection pressures will apply.

Huh? Do you know what inner cities are going to go through if TSHTF?

Ah, to be a white racist. Condemned forever to believe that you are dumber than most Asians and wimpier and less masculine than most blacks...

The worst thing about being white and racially aware is that a certain tribe looks enough like you...

I mean, the salient fact here is that everybody follows us around.

catperson said...

Then Rushton is wrong. Evolution is adaptation.

Yes, and species tend to become increasingly more adaptable over evolutionary time, until they progress into something like humans who are arguabley the most adaptable of all. Rushton is correct. Evolution is progressive & couldn't be any other way because progress is the inevitable product of billions of years of trial and error.

Consider species no one really reacts to emotionally.

They've already been considered. Some biolgists speak of higher and lower plants whose fossils are literally found at higher and lower locations respectively.

Sure, that didn't happen, but there are black people younger than me. Therefore they aren't my ancestors.

By that logic reptiles are not your ancestors since there are baby reptiles.

When a population splits for some reason or another, evolution does not grind to a halt within whichever one you decide is the original population.

But if one population remains in the ancestral environment, it will not evolve as much as the population that's forced to adapt to a new environment.

We can tell by looking at East Asians that they aren't descended from Swedes.

But they are evolved from caucasoids and Swedes are caucasoids.

It makes more sense to say that 'Caucasoids' and East Asians evolved from a proto-Asian-Caucasoid population. First because it's true, and secondly because there are novel adaptations in both populations that aren't shared with the other.

So would you deny that mammals evolved from reptiles and instead say that both mammals and reptiles evolved from a proto-reptile/mammals?


you don't have a way of determining what populations are new (and improved) races and which ones are what you called subraces.

Yes I do. It's called PC analysis.

You think Jews are a new race evolved from Caucasians, but Native Americans are not a new race evolved from Asians.

I think Jews are an ethnicity. I think Native Americans are a race within the mongoloid subspecies.

The bat question is not rhetorical. Which bat species is most evolved?

I don't know. I've never studied bats.

East Asians are ancestral to American Indians (who have "split off" from them with the same loss of genetic information as Eurasians to Africans).

Actually genetic studies suggest that Native Americans are intermediate between caucasoids and mongoloids. They are the missing link as humans evolved from caucasoids into the more advanced mongoloids. They are a primitive race within a superior subspecies.

steve sailer slept here said...

Don't we have neanderthal dna? Can't we clone them? I'll bet Pixar will come up with a cartoon called NEON-derthal, the glowing cave man.

Anonymous said...

"Yes, and species tend to become increasingly more adaptable over evolutionary time, until they progress into something like humans who are arguabley the most adaptable of all."

Ever hear of a cockroach?

catperson said...

Ever hear of a cockroach?

I said humans are arguably the most adaptable. Cockroaches might be more adaptable, although unlike humans, they can't leave the planet once it becomes impossible to live in.

Anonymous said...

A good time to remind everyone of this...

Liberals and various racial shakedown artists (hi there catperson!) are very keen to keep the Out-Of-Africa idea alive in its simplistic form.

However, Ive noted (and I'm not the only one) that whenever primitive humans are depicted in movies, TV, ads cartoons etc They are always depicted as white or Neanderthal, as cavemen not as hunter gathers on the African plains. Whats that about eh?

Sagat said...

The only genes likely to survive all these generations since the estimated time of interspecies mating would be genes that have a benefit on survival. Even if the percentage of modern human DNA that had origins in Neanderthals is only one percent, if those genes included a few mutations for increased brain function the impact of the mating would be massive.

catperson said...

"Even if the percentage of modern human DNA that had origins in Neanderthals is only one percent, if those genes included a few mutations for increased brain function the impact of the mating would be massive."

But neandertals were unintelligent; the couldn't outadapt humans despite the fact that they were twice as strong as we are.

David said...

catperson said

>humans evolved from caucasoids into the more advanced mongoloids<

Is that why Asians resemble the extraterrestrial God race in "Close Encounters of the Third Kind" more than dumb lazy round-eyes do?

LOL.

Evolution is adaptive. "Progressive" (in the normative sense) as a first principle of evolution is moonshine.

rob said...

Actually genetic studies suggest that Native Americans are intermediate between caucasoids and mongoloids. They are the missing link as humans evolved from caucasoids into the more advanced mongoloids. They are a primitive race within a superior subspecies.

They split off from Asians after Asians split off from Caucasians (assuming that happened). You claimed Neanderthals were inferior because they split off earlier. Either timing of a split matters, or it doesn't.

But they are evolved from caucasoids and Swedes are caucasoids.

They did not evolve from Swedes. We can tell by looking at Swedes that there've been genetic changes from the ancestral population. Many modern Caucasians have light colored hair and eyes. Why did Asians lose almost all their copies of alleles that cause blue eyes? Oh, the never had them. So yes, it does make sense to say that the two populations evolved from a common ancestral population rather than claiming that Asians evolved from modern Caucasians.

Likewise, mammals did evolve from ancient reptiles. Modern reptiles also evolved from ancient reptiles.

Ok, you never studies bats, what criteria would you use to determine which species is at the top of the great chain of bat being?

catperson said...

They split off from Asians after Asians split off from Caucasians (assuming that happened).

But they split off mongoloids before mongoloids had finished evolving, and thus retained a lot of primitive caucasoid taits.


They did not evolve from Swedes. We can tell by looking at Swedes that there've been genetic changes from the ancestral population.

But they're still caucasoid.

Likewise, mammals did evolve from ancient reptiles. Modern reptiles also evolved from ancient reptiles.

So you admit that mammals evolved from reptiles. We agree.


Ok, you never studies bats, what criteria would you use to determine which species is at the top of the great chain of bat being?

The time period when archaic forms of each type of bat emerged.

Anonymous said...

The website for the book - http://the10000yearexplosion.com/ - has a separate sub-page for each chapter: http://the10000yearexplosion.com/the-neanderthal-withinn/

rob said...

But they split off mongoloids before mongoloids had finished evolving, and thus retained a lot of primitive caucasoid taits.

See where you said that the original population continues evolving even after a split? Even though the split-off population also evolves? That's exactly why everything else you said is silly.

Anonymous said...

Some people think Jews are the humans with the most Neanderthal genes - http://www.michaelbradley.info/books/iceman/iceman_promo.html

Pseudothyrum said...

In the USA it is rather easy to see the split between people who have more Neanderthal genes vs. those who have more Cro-Magnon genes.

The people with more Neanderthal genes tend to be shorter, stockier, have wider hips, are more muscular (more brawny), are hairier, have larger mouths, and are often 'beetle browed' with more rounded (less angular) facial features.

Meanwhile the people with more Cro-Magnon genes tend to be taller, thinner, have thinner hips, are less muscular, are less hairy, have smaller mouths, and often have higher foreheads plus more angular/bony features such as square jaws and prominent chins.

There has obviously been extensive mixing going on, so often there is a blending of these features though often one or the other predominates in family lines. And it is complicated even more when you mix Asiatic genes in to the mix, which Europe has had a semi-large dose of over the centuries (especially in Eastern Europe with the Mongol invasions).

Anonymous said...

But they split off mongoloids before mongoloids had finished evolving, and thus retained a lot of primitive caucasoid taits.

Uh... Groups don't "finish" evolving lol.

Whereas the proto-Eurasians who evolved into Caucasoids had already evolved into Caucasoids at the time of the splitting off? The archaeological record does not support your contention.

I would say it is quite as likely that Mongoloids split off from proto-Eurasians and thus retained many primitive traits of that group which the Caucasoids then lost as is your contention.

catperson said...

See where you said that the original population continues evolving even after a split? Even though the split-off population also evolves? That's exactly why everything else you said is silly.

My argument doesn't depend on evolution grinding to a halt in one population after a split occurs, but rather it depends on the assertion that life forms that emerge prematurely from the mainstream of evolution will be stunted in their evolutionary development. Think of a baby that is born very premature. It continues to grow, but never fully catches up. Similarly, premature populations continue to evolve but never fully catch up.

Whereas the proto-Eurasians who evolved into Caucasoids had already evolved into Caucasoids at the time of the splitting off? The archaeological record does not support your contention

Interesting. What archeological evidence do you speak of?


I would say it is quite as likely that Mongoloids split off from proto-Eurasians and thus retained many primitive traits of that group which the Caucasoids then lost as is your contention.

But modern humans populated the middle east (a caucasoid region of the world) long before they moved up to East Asia and the Americas, thus archaic forms of caucasoid are likely to have evolved long before incipient mongoloids.

Anonymous said...

Interesting. What archeological evidence do you speak of?

That proto-Eurasian skulls are not exactly Caucasoid skulls. Thus, at least craniometrically, Caucasoids=/proto-Eurasians.

...

Look, the argument that you are trying to access is not what you think it is.

The argument is actually that East Asians have evolved particular behaviours such as high IQ as a result of their environment and that they have been able to evolve these both because they have had long enough to evolve in such a fashion, had a good enough genetic base to do so and the fact that they form a separate breeding population from humans in other climates has meant that their particular path hasn't been swamped out by immigration factors (unlike, theoretically, West Eurasians evolving in a similar, but probably less demanding climate).

This is a tenable argument (though I seriously doubt that the archaic East Asian hunter gatherers the present day population had anything like the IQ the Inuit do, as Continental Interior climates are nothing like as harsh and tool dependent as the arctic - but maybe enough to give them a path dependant advantage on West Eurasians).

It's not a slam dunk, but it's tenable. The drawbacks are that firstly it's very "just so" when compared to the Neanderthals at (who underwent a similar process but ended up apparently being replaced). The other main problem with it is that population movements from the South (Austronesian South East Asian territory) never seem to have ceased. And thirdly, brain size (which is one predictive variable for IQ) seems to be dependent on both climate and population size, and much more on population size.

What's not a tenable argument is that "splitting off" dates mean that a population is a new and "more advanced" race. If that were the case then the 'strane Aborigine strain that split off from the Eurasian population later than the Eurasian population split off from the African population would be particularly accomplished. They're not.

That a population "splits off" means something when that population splits off into a new habitat. That indicates that the split off population may be able to adapt in ways that the other population may not be able to due to population movements preventing it. Otherwise, a population split doesn't mean anything.

Perhaps you understand now?

Anonymous said...

Actually genetic studies suggest that Native Americans are intermediate between caucasoids and mongoloids. They are the missing link as humans evolved from caucasoids into the more advanced mongoloids. They are a primitive race within a superior subspecies.

LOL. Good luck finding a PCA plot that is representative (i.e. not totally biased towards genetic markers that differentiate Europeans from East Asians) that supports this contention. Not that I'd imagine you are capable of understanding this comment (since I'm sure you'll apply some circular reasoning about how biased panels aren't really biased because you've already assumed your premise of the things that differentiate between West and East Eurasians are being important).

catperson said...

.That proto-Eurasian skulls are not exactly Caucasoid skulls. Thus, at least craniometrically, Caucasoids=/proto-Eurasians.

Citation?


What's not a tenable argument is that "splitting off" dates mean that a population is a new and "more advanced" race..

It seems untenable to most people who think they understand evolution because the logic is very subtle. Allow me to simplify: The main trunk of the evolutionary tree is by definition where most of the evolution is occuring, so the earlier a population branches off of this trunk, the less evolved they will be.

If that were the case then the 'strane Aborigine strain that split off from the Eurasian population later than the Eurasian population split off from the African population would be particularly accomplished. They're not.

You may have your facts wrong here. The australoid subspecies did not split off Eurasians but rather took a different (coastal) path out of Africa, through Southern India and eventually Australia.

The drawbacks are that firstly it's very "just so" when compared to the Neanderthals at (who underwent a similar process but ended up apparently being replaced).

Well this is where my perspective is useful. The neanderthals remained primitive despite the cold climate they had to adapt to because the branched off the evolutionary tree prematurely, and thus adapted to the cold through physical evolution (rather than mental evolution which modern humans who migrated North experienced)

catperson said...

LOL. Good luck finding a PCA plot that is representative (i.e. not totally biased towards genetic markers that differentiate Europeans from East Asians) that supports this contention.

Way ahead of you buddy:

http://www.cais-soas.com/CAIS/Images2/General/Gene_clusters.jpg

rob said...

My argument doesn't depend on evolution grinding to a halt in one population after a split occurs, but rather it depends on the assertion that life forms that emerge prematurely from the mainstream of evolution will be stunted in their evolutionary development.

I get it. Europeans and Asians, tragically and "prematurely" isolated from the vast bulk of humanity are forever stunted. Not to mention that there is no mainstream of evolution.

But modern humans populated the middle east (a caucasoid region of the world) long before they moved up to East Asia and the Americas...

A caucasoid region of the world today. Back then, not so much. According to Sarich, fossils from 15-30K years ago were Caucasians are now looked more like a random sample of human fossils than modern caucasians.

catperson said...

Not to mention that there is no mainstream of evolution.

Rob, what a foolish thing to say. All you have to do if look at an evolutionary tree to see that trees have trunks.

Anonymous said...

Way ahead of you buddy

LOL. Old data, limited marker selection, two Native American samples, old Cavalli-Sforza plot. What more can I say?

...

The following link is a plot of cranial traits (by an East Asian scientist no less!). Note how East Asians are generally intermediate between New World samples and European samples (and between East Asian samples and African samples as well, to a lesser extent!).

http://mathildasanthropologyblog.wordpress.com/2008/11/25/hanihara-characterization-of-biological-diversity-through-analysis-of-discrete-cranial-traits/

If you think that the unmixed New World populations are between European and Asian populations even on a cranial panel, then you're a fool of very limited understanding, as it's precisely the opposite way around. Also, note how the dendrogram at the bottom places Australians and Papuans as a cluster which "splits off" (if you will) from the main "East Asian" cluster.

....

Basically the only way Native Americans are between Europeans and East Asians is that they don't have such a flat eyesockets and nose as the East Asians or as bumpy as the Europeans.

http://www.femininebeauty.info/ethnic-comparisons/facial-flatness

(You're free to think that progressing towards a flat midface is uber, but bear in mind that at the very least its a reversal of a trend that distinguishes the Homo genus from their primative Australopithecine forebears).

.....

For autosomal dna, here is an example of PC analysis that is actually up to date and representative (i.e. has a reasonable number of markers and a reasonable number of East Asia populations, rather than a low number that skews marker choice through ascertainment bias):

http://dienekes.blogspot.com/2009/07/ancestry-informative-marker-set-for.html

Also FYI - http://dienekes.blogspot.com/2008/02/new-study-on-global-human-variation.html

See how the Papuans and Melanesians cluster with East Asians in this sample at low K-clusters. This can only be because, if we're accepting a splitting off event of whatever stripe, then they shared in the "splitting off event" with East Asians from West Eurasians, i.e. they were part of the same population at the "splitting off" time. They split from the East Asian population to become a separate population at a later date after this, as can be seen from the green component at K-3, but earlier than the East Asian population did.

Catty, what more can anyone say to such a person as you? Splitting off times just don't matter, rather the conditions and genetic pools of split off populations do. That's just the way it is, and I'm sorry that your mangled understanding can't comprehend it.

catperson said...

Catty, what more can anyone say to such a person as you? Splitting off times just don't matter, rather the conditions and genetic pools of split off populations do.

Splitting off times do have predictive validity. Princeton biologist JT Bonner found that the later an animal emerged in earth's history, the larger was its brain and the more complex was its culture. I understand this may not seem logical to you as the logic is quite subtle, but you may wish to check out his 1980 book "The Evolution of Culture in Animals". Also check out the afterward of the third edition of Rushton's "Race, Evolution and Behavior" where he discusses the concept of progress in evolution.

Thanks for all the links and information. Obviously different researchers using different samples and different methods are going to arrive at different results. All we can do is look at multiple studies in the hopes that they triangulate on probable truth.

Anonymous said...

Catperson:

I'll consider the discussion closed here as well, but I can't help feeling that you still could gain a better understanding by simply reading what I have written with an open mind.

found that the later an animal emerged in earth's history, the larger was its brain and the more complex was its culture

On this:

It's obviously a truism that more complex forms can only result from less complex forms (though less complex forms can also result from more complex forms) and that there is therefore a rough positive correlation between complexity and time across the history of life.

That doesn't actually relate to whether creatures that are contemporous, occupy the same niche and compete are going to have greater or lesser "cultural and social complexity" if they follow the same strategy and have the same material for natural selection to work from.

Here's an analogy : Taken across its average modern North American culture is more technologically advanced than the average for the entire span of Chinese culture or European culture. This is because we define North American culture as a split off culture which, as it is more recent, only has a history of 500 or so odd years, which are necessarily more technologically advanced than the average of cultures elsewhere. This doesn't mean that it is more technologically advanced than the present wavefront of culture in China, Japan or Europe. Now given the example of North America I have chosen, this is contingently so, but this is not the case for South America, so if we had identified split off time as meaningful based on the contingent North American case discussed, we would be making a mistake, as this is obvious not the salient variable but is merely a correlated proxy for the things that actually do matter and a model that fixated upon this would lead to flawed conclusions.

rob said...

Rob, what a foolish thing to say. All you have to do if look at an evolutionary tree to see that trees have trunks.

This tree, does it also have branches? Which branch is the mainstream?

Species are not individuals, there are no "premature" ones.

Consider populations that radiated from Africans. You think the Neanderthals are inferior because they split off. You also think East Asians are superior because they split off from Africans. The only way to reconcile the two positions is think that Africans caught up and surpassed the (larger brained) Neanderthals. So Africans there are no premature speciations that you can figure out except in hindsight.

Sagat said...

But neandertals were unintelligent; the couldn't outadapt humans despite the fact that they were twice as strong as we are.

Neanderthal genes wouldn't replace human genes. The only genes that would spread so rapidly across the gene pool would be the genes that had a were highly selective. It could be a gene that helped our brains metabolize energy better or a gene that increased our skull size, which in turn allowed us bigger brains. So while the Neanderthals probably weren't as intelligent as modern humans, they still could have had given us genes that were beneficial to our intelligence.

catperson said...

It's obviously a truism that more complex forms can only result from less complex forms (though less complex forms can also result from more complex forms) and that there is therefore a rough positive correlation between complexity and time across the history of life.

Correct. And it's also obviously true that newer forms of life result from older forms of life, and thus by definition, newer forms of life are more evolved than older forms of life. In addition, since evolution works through trial and error, it is not unreasonable to expect more evolved forms of life to be superior to less evolved forms of life (generally speaking).


this is obvious not the salient variable but is merely a correlated proxy for the things that actually do matter and a model that fixated upon this would lead to flawed conclusions.

I agree that how evolved a life form is just a crude proxy for how superior, adaptable or complex it is.

This tree, does it also have branches? Which branch is the mainstream?

The branch that does the most branching.

You think the Neanderthals are inferior because they split off. You also think East Asians are superior because they split off from Africans.

Mongoloids are more evolved than Neanderthals because they are the newest form of humanity, and humans are more recently emerged than neanderthals. Older less evolved forms tend to be inferior and neanderthals appear to have small brains when you adjust for their muscle mass:

http://www.nature.com/nature/journal/v387/n6629/abs/387173a0.html