Re: speech

Hoff Stuart (
Thu, 19 Dec 1996 17:10:35 -0500 wrote:
> wrote:
> >shorty question, what is the speculation on when language came about?
> >Neanderthal? Earlier? Any guesses at what level that language existed
> >in Neanderthal?
> >Robert
> >specify the e-mail address below, my reply-to: has anti-spam added to it
> >
> >Real Men change diapers
> I would like to add the following questions to Robert's:
> When do tools begin to show signs of handedness? (ie. made with the
> right hand.)
> What is the conventional speculation with regard to right-handedness
> (as indicated from tool making), left brain increase in size, other
> physiological development of the throat, and the onset of language
> skills?
> Dave

Stone tools show right-handedness as early as 1.5 my ago to 1.9 my ago
(p. 142 Schick and Toth - Making Silent Stones Speak.) Modern humans
show a certain asymmetry of the brain whereas Australopithecines do not
(p 103 ibid.) This indicates lack of handedness. However, the standard
quote of 90% right handedness in modern man (p. 140 ibid) may not really
be that universal (p. 270 in McGrew et. al. 1996 - Great Ape Societies)
and apes do show some handedness(p. 270 McGrew).

I suspect that modern language does not really show up until modern H.
Sapiens. I find it hard to believe that technology and innovation and
any sign of art would be so lacking for 2 million years of early Homo
sp. if they had modern language. Stone tools changed very little for an
incredibly large amount of time.

Hoff Stuart
Reston, VA