What can fossilized teeth tell us about our ancient life expectancy? What can big data on fossils reveal about farming's problematic role in human evolution? How can simple geometric comparisons of skull and pelvic fossils suggest an origin to our social nature?
In Close Encounters with Humankind, paleoanthropologist Sang-Hee Lee explores some of our biggest evolutionary questions from unexpected new angles. Through a series of entertaining, bite-sized chapters, we gain new perspectives into our first hominin ancestors, our first steps on two feet, our first forays into toolmaking and hunting, and of course our continuing evolution.
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"Narrator Emily Woo Zeller is an affable guide through this brisk introduction to paleoanthropology. Paleoanthropologist Sang-Hee Lee assumes that listeners aren't familiar with her field, and it's apparent in most of the lucid, bite-sized chapters on a variety of topics. Coupled with Zeller's polished delivery, the result is less a classroom experience and more akin to an audio museum tour. Zeller's smooth voice makes for easy listening--occasionally too easy, to the point of being lulling. And though the authors aim for a beginner-friendly approach, some chapters are still too dense. Listeners who don't already know the finer points of Homo erectus versus Homo habilis may be scratching their heads. But these are minor faults of an otherwise worthwhile popular science audiobook. A.T.N. © AudioFile 2018, Portland, Maine"
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