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Agriculture: Article presents results of conscious human selection as if humans are an unconscious natural force

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einkorn/Kurt Stueber

From ScienceDaily:

Professor Robin Allaby, in Warwick’s School of Life Sciences, has discovered that human crop gathering was so extensive, as long ago as the last Ice Age, that it started to have an effect on the evolution of rice, wheat and barley — triggering the process which turned these plants from wild to domesticated.

In Tell Qaramel, an area of modern day northern Syria, the research demonstrates evidence of einkorn being affected up to thirty thousand years ago, and rice has been shown to be affected more than thirteen thousand years ago in South, East and South-East Asia.

Furthermore, emmer wheat is proved to have been affected twenty-five thousand years ago in the Southern Levant — and barley in the same geographical region over twenty-one thousand years ago.

The researchers traced the timeline of crop evolution in these areas by analysing the evolving gene frequencies of archaeologically uncovered plant remains.

Professor Robin Allaby commented, “This study changes the nature of the debate about the origins of agriculture, showing that very long term natural processes seem to lead to domestication — putting us on a par with the natural world, where we have species like ants that have domesticated fungi, for instance.”Paper. (paywall) – Robin G. Allaby, Chris Stevens, Leilani Lucas, Osamu Maeda, Dorian Q. Fuller. Geographic mosaics and changing rates of cereal domestication. Philosophical Transactions of the Royal Society B, October 2017 DOI: 10.1098/rstb.2016.0429 More.

Of course, our human ancestors carefully thought about the changes they made so they were not “on a par with” natural forces at all. Unless you buy the now-conventional, though completely unsourced, claim that consciousness is an illusion.

But this stuff makes for easy pop science reading and writing, with admirable piffle in arty science journals to come.

See also: Psychologists: Consciousness is an illusion, like a rainbow. Stripped of academic politeness, Oakley and Halligan are saying that, in their view, consciousness is a beautiful evolved illusion. Though they don’t quite say it, consciousness is fair game for manipulation by power-hungry technocrats “important everyday notions.” Let’s see if this theme grows: Evolutionary biologist: Humans evolved to need coercion.

Post-modern science: The illusion of consciousness sees through itself

and

Can science survive long in a post-modern world? It’s not clear.

Note: Einkorn has a nutrition following to this day:

One Reply to “Agriculture: Article presents results of conscious human selection as if humans are an unconscious natural force

  1. 1
    polistra says:

    The article just needs some good editing.

    “Human crop gathering was so extensive, as long ago as the last Ice Age, that it started to have an effect on the evolution of rice, wheat and barley — triggering the process which turned these plants from wild to domesticated.”

    Edit:

    “Human crop gathering was the process which turned these plants from wild to domesticated.”

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