Wednesday, November 11, 2009

New Chinese Hominid Fossil Supports Multiregional Evolution?

China National News has a story about a hominid find in Guangxi that suggests that there was not replacement of archaic humans by modern humans in this area. The author writes:
The mandible has a protruding chin like that of Homo sapiens, but the thickness of the jaw is indicative of more primitive hominins, suggesting that the fossil could derive from interbreeding.

If confirmed, the finding would lend support to the "multiregional hypothesis", which says that modern humans descend from Homo sapiens coming out of Africa who then interbred with more primitive humans on other continents.

In contrast, the prevailing "out of Africa" hypothesis holds that modern humans are the direct descendants of people who spread out of Africa to other continents around 100,000 years ago.

"This paper acts to reject the theory that modern humans are of uniquely African origin and supports the notion that emerging African populations mixed with natives they encountered," said Milford Wolpoff, a proponent of the multiregional hypothesis at the University of Michigan.
Most Chinese Palaeoanthropologists, pointing to the unique features of remains like Dali and Maba have long believed that there is a continuous line from Homo erectus to the later remains and going to the material found in the Upper Cave at Zhoukoudian, which is dated at around 30 ky BP. This should prove interesting.

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