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Neanderthal Pathology – Evidence of an Atypical Human Hunter-Gatherer?

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The orthodox view of the Neanderthals largely remains one of a “cognitively inhibited” hominin lacking the behavioural and biological adaptations that allowed Homo sapiens to prosper. On-going research and excavation is showing this outmoded view to be ever more unsustainable. Using data drawn from the pathological record I will argue that the Neanderthals, far from being the lumbering, injury prone idiots of lore, were in fact typical of many human hunter-gatherer populations. Ultimately using badly devised comparisons is just as disingenuous as the arguments made for the Upper Palaeolithic Revolution.

This talk is part of the Biological Anthropology Seminar Series series.

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