Bones, Stones and Molecules

1st Edition

"Out of Africa" and Human Origins

Print ISBN: 9780121569334
eBook ISBN: 9780080488417
Imprint: Academic Press
Published Date: 20th May 2004
Page Count: 400
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Bones, Stones and Molecules provides some of the best evidence for resolving the debate between the two hypotheses of human origins. The debate between the 'Out of Africa' model and the 'Multiregional' hypothesis is examined through the functional and developmental processes associated with the evolution of the human skull and face and focuses on the significance of the Australian record. The book analyzes important new discoveries that have occurred recently and examines evidence that is not available elsewhere. Cameron and Groves argue that the existing evidence supports a recent origin for modern humans from Africa. They also specifically relate these two theories to interpretations of the origins of the first Australians. The book provides an up-to-date interpretation of the fossil, archaeological and the molecular evidence, specifically as it relates to Asia, and Australia in particular.

Key Features

  • Readily accessible to the layperson and professional
  • Provides concise coverage of current scientific evidence
  • Presents a robust computer-generated model of human speciation over the last 7 million years
  • Well illustrated with figures and photographs of important fossil specimens
  • Presents a synthesis of great ape and human evolution


Researchers, students, and the general layperson interested in evolution, primatology, or physical anthropology.

Table of Contents

Acknowledgements Preface

  1. Introduction
  2. Evolution of the Miocene Great Apes
  3. The Later Miocene and Early Pliocene Hominids
  4. Our Kind of Hominins
  5. A Systematic Scheme for the Pliocene and Early Pleistocene Hominids
  6. The First African Exodus: The Emergence of Early Homo in Europe and Asia
  7. Human Evolution in the Middle Pleistocene
  8. “The Grisly Folk”: The Emergence of the Neanderthals
  9. The Second African Exodus: The Emergence of Modern Humans
  10. The Emergence of Modern Humans in Asia and Australia
  11. Epilogue Appendix: Detailed Description of Characters (DWC) References Index


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© Academic Press 2004
Academic Press
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"I was keenly anticipating this book, for I have the highest opinion of the work of both Cameron and Groves. I was not disappointed, for it is a thoroughly researched and entertaining book....Its strength lies in the wonderful clarity in which the principles of phylogenetic analysis are laid out and then applied rigorously to the hominid fossil record. Although many will disagree with the conclusions, they will be able to do so more readily because the analyses are so clearly set out, both the characters used and the methods." -Peter Andrews, Natural History Museum, London, England “This is a detailed treatment which is sure to stimulate consideable debate and argument.” -David Pilbeam, Peabody Museum, Harvard University "Although fairly academic in approach, this is still a very readable and well-illustrated overview." - Douglas Palmer, NEW SCIENTIST