Moving Targets

Thomas Clarke (
14 Oct 1995 13:37:13 GMT

Ian Tattersal's in his book, "The Fossil Trail", talks about
the problem with theory. There is precious little evidence but
we all want to know the story of how man came to be. He argues
that only cladistic relationships are testable from the data.
I suppose this means that we should stop arguing about how man
became bipdeal (drop AAT discussion and all that) until more
fossils are found.

I cannot resist on observation though (this is usenet). It seems
like all through the history of paleoanthropology the next fossile
to be found older than the ones that have been found is the one
expected to be only partly bipedal, partway between ape and man.
But evertime a new post cranial fossil is found that gives unambigous
locomotion evidience, H. Erectus, Lucy. The new find is fully
bipedal. To an eye uneducated in graduate paleo-A Lucy's pelvis looks
damn human. I'd put here in genus homo for sure.

How long will this go on? Now there is only a million or two years
to account for bipedalism. Will the next fossil found be

Tom Clarke