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11: Archaic Homo

  • Page ID
    • Amanda Wolcott Paske & AnnMarie Beasley Cisneros

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    Learning Objectives

    • Identify the main groupings of Archaic Homo sapiens, such as Neanderthals.
    • Explain how shifting environmental conditions required flexibility of adaptations, both anatomically and behaviorally.
    • Describe the unique anatomical and cultural characteristics of Archaic Homo sapiens, including Neanderthals, in contrast to other hominins.
    • Articulate how Middle Pleistocene hominin fossils fit into evolutionary trends including cranial capacity (brain size) development, cultural innovations, and migration patterns.
    • Identify the shared traits, regional variations, and local adaptations among Archaic Homo sapiens.
    • Detail the increased complexity and debates surrounding the classification of hominins in light of transitional species, species admixture, etc.

    Thumbnail: Dali cranium, found at Dali, China, is representative of traits seen in archaic Homo sapiens in Asia, including large and robust features with heavy brow ridges like Homo erectus and a large cranial capacity intermediate between Homo erectus and anatomically modern Homo sapiens. Credit: Dali skull original to Explorations: An Open Invitation to Biological Anthropology (2nd ed.) by Mary Nelson is under a CC BY-NC 4.0 License.

    This chapter is a revision from “ Chapter 11: Archaic Homo ” by Amanda Wolcott Paskey and AnnMarie Beasley Cisneros. In Explorations: An Open Invitation to Biological Anthropology, first edition , edited by Beth Shook, Katie Nelson, Kelsie Aguilera, and Lara Braff, which is licensed under CC BY-NC 4.0 .

    This page titled 11: Archaic Homo is shared under a CC BY-NC 4.0 license and was authored, remixed, and/or curated by Amanda Wolcott Paske & AnnMarie Beasley Cisneros (Society for Anthropology in Community Colleges) via source content that was edited to the style and standards of the LibreTexts platform; a detailed edit history is available upon request.