Science and evolution and ...

Richard Spear (rspear@PRIMENET.COM)
Wed, 13 Sep 1995 20:32:36 -0800

There has always been conflict and struggle in archaeology around the
interpretation of empirical data ... Binford and Glynn Isaac (the
"home base" debate), Binford and Bordes (the middle paleolithic), the
"Eve" hypothesis vs. multiregionalism, etc. (no, not *always*
Binford! Although folks like Binford and processualism are probably
the source). The interpretations of empirical evidence are debatable
and these arguments point out the significant differences in the
meaning of interpretation ... are the hominids of the past human? did
they have a culture and interact as we do? Is there continuity from
early hominids through and to modern humans?

I don't think that these questions are "scientifically neutral."
The results of our interpretations will affect our lives. The human
elements of our existance could be lost in analyses that are
deterministic or mechanical (yes, this especially from a scientist
and Marxist!) Does the "truth" (whatever it is) demand evaluations
that leave us empty and without purpose? Dump "science" if that's the
case, I say!

If we are free to interpret as we wish, let's choose an
interpretation that gives us strength and power and purpose. Let's
*not* choose interpretations of existance that remove any meaning
from our lives.