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Lucy The Beginnings Of Humankind Donald Johanson Maitland Edey origin of species charles darwin fossil record bones
Lucy: The Beginnings Of Humankind - paperback Price: $16.95 |
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The serious student of anthropology will find this book delightful and expansive. Johanson and Edey do a wonderful job of recreating the thrill of the discovery in the Ethiopian region of Hadar. We are brought along on the journey as scientists around the world argue as to the real meaning of the Hadar find. Louis and Mary Leakey join Johanson and his colleagues to try to unravel the mystery. Within the four-hundred or so odd pages, readers will find current research mixed with anthropology history, vivid photographs surrounded by precise drawings, and technical jargon alternated with the flowing recollections of Johanson himself.

There are five parts to the book, each focusing on a different component of the Lucy discovery: Background, The Golden Decade, 1967-1977, What is Lucy? Why did Lucy walk erect? and Unfinished Business. The bulk of the material regards the present state of paleoanthropology (the study of the fossils of human ancestors.) In these pages we are introduced to Olduvai Gorge, Johnnyís Child, the Piltdown Man, Homo habilis and Laetoli, the backdrop of the story that would begin when Lucy was discovered. So, where did apes and modern humans diverge from the same ancestry, and how long ago did this occur? Did brain capacity increase after man began walking upright or was it the other way around? Johansonís answers to these questions may not hold up forever, but half of the journey in science is the path taken to the discovery, and Lucy has already taught us more than we could have ever imagined possible.