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Out of Africa vs. Multiregional

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  1. Introduction
  2. Anthropologists explaining fossil evidence
  3. The Recent African Origins Hypothesis
  4. Conclusion: Rapid advances in DNA technology

One of the biggest debates today in paleoanthropology concerns the origins of modern humans. Before humans evolved into modern form, Homo sapiens populated Africa and the Middle East, Homo erectus lived in Asia, and Neandertals populated Europe. As time went on, this diversity came to an end and humans everywhere were of the modern form. The way this transformation took place is the subject of debate: did these changes come about as a result of multiregional continuity in evolution, or was Africa the sole origin of modern humans?

Tags: Out of Africa vs Multiregional, Out of Africa model vs Multiregional model, Out of Africa Hypothesis vs Multiregional

[...] Out of Africa vs. Multiregional One of the biggest debates today in paleoanthropology concerns the origins of modern humans. Before humans evolved into modern form, Homo sapiens populated Africa and the Middle East, Homo erectus lived in Asia, and Neandertals populated Europe. As time went on, this diversity came to an end and humans everywhere were of the modern form. The way this transformation took place is the subject of debate: did these changes come about as a result of multiregional continuity in evolution, or was Africa the sole origin of modern humans? [...]


[...] Proponents of the Multiregional Hypothesis argue that fossils signify local population evolution. In China, for example, fossils from different eras all have forward-facing cheeks and flatter faces. Also, there is no evidence of speciation to remove Homo erectus or Neandertals from our ancestry. In support of the Recent African Origins Hypothesis is new technology that uses mitochondrial DNA to trace the evolutionary line. Since mtDNA is inherited only from the mother and does not go through the process of recombination, changes only happen as a result of mutation. [...]

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