Re: _the neandertal enigma_ questions

JamShreeve (
19 Sep 1995 17:33:27 -0400

yep, this was in the book. but, i get confused here. if there was
sexual dimorphism among the neadertals, and neandertal females are much
more robust than modern females, THEN modern males are "much, much" more
gracile/less robust than neandertal males, accoutning for the decreased
the level of sexual dimorphism among moderns, right?

basically, yes: the decrease in sexual dimorphism between Neandertals and
modern humans is due to the relative "gracilization" of the males. But it
may be a little less straightforward than that. According to David
Frayer, the gracilization of Neandertals occurred first in females, then
quite a bit later in time in males. So this differential in time would
make the species - or population, Frayer would say - look more sexually
dimorphic than moderns. James