View Full Version : Question about Behavioral modernity

29-03-19, 09:14
I am trying to learn about paleogenetics, and even though I more or less understand what happened in Europe for the last say 10,000 years, I still do not understand well the issue of Behavioral modernity.

I have read for example the wikipedia (https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Homo_sapiens#Behavioral_modernity) and it is not clear to me if Behavioral modernity happened in Africa before the Out of Africa expansion, or if it happened outside Africa and it flowed back into Africa.

I also do not understand what "basal" is, in relation to (some of the?) first Africans that left Africa, but do not have any Neanderthal autosome.

Can anybody give me some reference to understand how, when and where Homo Sapiens became behaviorally modern?

29-03-19, 09:37
IMO behavioral modernity is a fabrication

29-03-19, 10:39
Well, something happened. Our lot had basically stayed in the climate zones we were designed for for a quarter of a million years. And suddenly we just swept away all the other lineages, some of them in climates they seemed adapted for and that was wrong for us. And we wiped out entire ecosystems and megafauna layers of ecologies for looking at us funny. Something changed. Exactly what is a big question though, and we don't know what. Not biological or genetic, because people such as the !San are not significantly different.

I could speculate, but the answer is we don't really know.

29-03-19, 15:25
yes something was going on, but what exactly?
there are many speculations, but none are proven
the only visible thing is the sudden spread of blade tools
and an associated starlike expansion of both haplogroups C and F from 48.8 ka till 45 ka

29-03-19, 16:11
IMO behavioral modernity is a fabrication

Unfortunately you haven't spent long enough around different peoples in poorer areas lol - it's a thing for sure. If e.g. East Asians evolved to have longer digestive tracts as rice is relatively hard to digest, you can be sure that just like in the rest of the non-recent post-agricultural world aggressiveness was selected against due to community lifestyles.

Such genes that were selected against are MAO-A alleles, and they explain why f.e. poor African Americans commit more crime than other equally poor "ethnics" and Caucasians whose ancestors weren't only recently introduced to agriculture and community lifestyle. There's no reason to discriminate based on these facts though, as you should always treat people as individuals, but facts they remain.

Agriculture is one of those events in human history that had a giant effect on selection and resulted in heightened expressions of a completely different set of phenotypes than previously. If one were to classify humans on behaviour, this would be the main split and none would be comparable.