Darwin sought to not only produce a new scientific truth, but also to put an end to polygenism, the current scientific discourse on human origins that gave tacit and at times explicit support for slavery: ‘... when the principle of evolution is generally accepted, as it surely will be before long, the dispute between the monogenists and polygenists will die a silent and unobserved death.’ (Charles Darwin, Descent of Man, p. 235)

Thursday, June 21, 2012

Depiction of the Earth 38 million years ago (and Afrotarsius)

It is often forgotten that in attempting to think about the past, one must think of the earth itself as a very different place.
From Science Daily, an article about the identification of Afrotarsius libycus and its possible significance for understanding the origins of early hominids had with it a nice depiction of the earth 38 million years ago.  Afrotarsius Libycus was, as its name implies, found in what is now Libya.
"The image shows two fossilized upper molars. The molar of Afrasia from Myanmar is to the right. The molar of Afrotarsius from Libya is to the left. The map shows the ancient geography of this part of the globe, approximately 38 million years ago. The 3D model is an artist's reconstruction of Afrotarsius. (Credit: Mark Klingler/Carnegie Museum of Natural History)"
See also
"Topography Reconstructions at 1Kyr intervals since the Last Glacial Maximum by W. Peltier." at NOAA