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Human evolution: Did large brains cause Neanderthals to go extinct?


From George Dvorsky at Gizmodo:

New research published today in Scientific Reports suggests important differences in cognitive and neural function between Homo sapiens and Neanderthals led to differences in behavior that may have resulted in the conditions under which anatomically modern humans succeeded and Neanderthals failed some 45,000 years ago. To reach this conclusion—and in one of the first studies of its kind—scientists conducted a comparative analysis of Neanderthal and early modern human skulls to infer brain function. But because no other archaeological evidence was provided to bolster the case, and because the shape and size of brains cannot be definitively tied to cognitive capacity and behavior, the question of what caused Neanderthal extinction remains very much unsettled.

However, many Neanderthal artifacts have been found, and they suggest a culture similar to that of modern humans.

“This team has found significant differences between Neanderthal brains and modern human brains, specifically in brain areas we associate today with human capacities for language, social cooperation, and memory capacity,” Lana Ruck, a doctoral student in the Cognitive Science Program at the Department of Anthropology at Indiana University, told Gizmodo. “Because these are all very adaptive behaviors which have expanded in humans relative to other species today, it is interesting to study how these brain areas differed between the hominins.” More.

The team did not actually study brains. None have been preserved. They studied skulls and inferred or speculated all the rest.

Anyway, did Neanderthals go extinct at all, as opposed to being fully assimilated into the early European population, as genome maps imply?

They were never very numerous, relative to the newcomers. Here’s a familiar demographic pattern: There are simply many more partners available in the large majority group than in the small minority one. Small groups must make serious efforts to avoid assimilation (assuming they wish to); otherwise, it can just happen. Otherwise, the group lives on in the genome but not in society. Is there some reason for believing that that is not what really happened to Neanderthals?

See also: Did Neanderthals’ faces help them cope with the Ice Age?

Okay, so Neanderthals cared for each other

Neanderthal Man: The long-lost relative turns up again, this time with documents


A deep and abiding need for Neanderthals to be stupid. Why?

While larger body size generally comes with increased cranial capacity (used as a proxy for intelligence of the fossilized) the relationship between cranial capacity and actual intelligence is tentative at best, especially when comparing across animal families: http://nonlin.org/human-evolution/ Nonlin.org
Neanderthals started out as, and have basically always been, a deception on the part of Darwinists. Darwinists needed a brutish ape-man for their narrative, and thus with a little imagination and a creative artist, then "WA LA" instant ape-man.
1908 artistic rendering of Neanderthal: https://misfitsandheroes.files.wordpress.com/2015/11/neanderthal-illustration.jpg?w=640&h=376 2016 artistic rendering of Neanderthal - https://i.kinja-img.com/gawker-media/image/upload/c_scale,f_auto,fl_progressive,q_80,w_800/qcvo79obr3mffo9bsviu.jpg Marcelline Boule - November 14, 2015 Poor Neanderthals. No matter how many wonderful things we learn about them, they remain our lesser predecessors, dismissed as stupid and coarse. Excerpt: The Boule image In 1908, after the discovery of the skeleton of an old Neanderthal man, along with remains of wooly rhinoceros, reindeer, ibex, hyena, bison, and wild horse at La Chapelle aux Saints, Marcelline Boule, the influential French paleontologist, concluded that the Neanderthal was brutish, bent-kneed, and did not stand fully upright. The illustration he had made by Frantisek Kupka (pictured on the left) shows a hairy gorilla-like figure with opposable toes.... Boule’s theories about Neanderthals and the terrible illustration that accompanied them still stick in the public mind, even in the face of contradictions. Recent studies have shown that Neanderthals had a robust build and a larger brain than Homo sapiens. A 2007 study of the Neanderthal genome in several individuals, led by Carles Laleuza-Fox and published in Science, suggested that Neanderthals had varied skin pigmentation and eye color, just as modern humans do. https://misfitsandheroes.wordpress.com/tag/marcelline-boule/
If you have to use fraudulent props to support your theory perhaps it is time for you to find a new theory!?! The full story of the fraudulent inception and then the subsequent decades long process of debunking Neanderthals as supposed ape-men is discussed in detail in the following video:
Review of "Contested Bones" (Part 3 - Chapter 3 "Homo neanderthalensis") 2-10-2018 by Paul Giem - video https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=V2OOt2qFdu4&list=PLHDSWJBW3DNU_twNBjopIqyFOwo_bTkXm&index=3
Of related note to the supposed differences in brain sizes,,, Contrary to popular belief, it is the human brain that has shrunk from its original size to now become significantly smaller than the Neanderthal's.
Cro Magnon skull shows that our brains have shrunk - Mar 15, 2010 by Lisa Zyga Excerpt: Using new technology, researchers have produced a replica of the 28,000-year-old brain and found that it is about 15-20% larger than our brains. http://phys.org/news187877156.html If Modern Humans Are So Smart, Why Are Our Brains Shrinking? - January 20, 2011 Excerpt: John Hawks is in the middle of explaining his research on human evolution when he drops a bombshell. Running down a list of changes that have occurred in our skeleton and skull since the Stone Age, the University of Wisconsin anthropologist nonchalantly adds, “And it’s also clear the brain has been shrinking.” “Shrinking?” I ask. “I thought it was getting larger.” The whole ascent-of-man thing.,,, He rattles off some dismaying numbers: Over the past 20,000 years, the average volume of the human male brain has decreased from 1,500 cubic centimeters to 1,350 cc, losing a chunk the size of a tennis ball. The female brain has shrunk by about the same proportion. “I’d call that major downsizing in an evolutionary eyeblink,” he says. “This happened in China, Europe, Africa—everywhere we look.” http://discovermagazine.com/2010/sep/25-modern-humans-smart-why-brain-shrinking “Neanderthals are known for their large cranial capacity, which at 1600cc is larger on average than modern humans.” http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Neanderthal#Anatomy

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