The Journey of Man: A Genetic Odyssey
Random House Trade Paperbacks, 2003 - 218 pages
Around 60,000 years ago, a man—genetically identical to us—lived in Africa. Every person alive today is descended from him. How did this real-life Adam wind up as the father of us all? What happened to the descendants of other men who lived at the same time? And why, if modern humans share a single prehistoric ancestor, do we come in so many sizes, shapes, and races?
Examining the hidden secrets of human evolution in our genetic code, Spencer Wells reveals how developments in the revolutionary science of population genetics have made it possible to create a family tree for the whole of humanity. Replete with marvelous anecdotes and remarkable information, from the truth about the real Adam and Eve to the way differing racial types emerged, The Journey of Man is an enthralling, epic tour through the history and development of early humankind.
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One of the apparent conundrums of biology is that the more temperate parts of
the world actually contain the largest animals . In ecology there is an observation
known as Bergmann's rule , which states that body size increases with latitude .
These include several species of antelope , an animal that has been called the '
takeaway pizza ' of the Upper ... this time , with evidence that early human
populations followed herds of grazing animals - particularly antelope – from
But the animals they hunted would have made the difficulties worthwhile . We
saw earlier that one of the defining features of species living at high latitudes is
their great size - Bergmann's rule . The reason is that large animals have less
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Review: The Journey of Man: A Genetic OdysseyUser Review - Joe - Goodreads
Conclusion of Wells' work is that we're all descendants of a single man who lived in Africa about 20,000 years ago. And he is convincing! Very interesting book, with some genetic science thrown in to spice it up (but it doesn't get in the way). Read full review
LibraryThing ReviewUser Review - snash - LibraryThing
The book presents a picture of man's migrations between 60,000 and 10,000 years ago. It is a companion book with the TV special and provides more background into the scientific rational of the study and its conclusions. It is presented in a manner quite understandable to the lay person. Read full review