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The Great Human Diasporas: The History Of Diversity and Evolution Paperback – November 6, 1996
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Copyright 1994 Reed Business Information, Inc. --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.
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Top Customer Reviews
The most valuable contribution of this book to popular understanding is that population genetics provides possibly the best though not sole scientific basis on which to construct the prehistory of human "races." By this evidence, we learn, for example, about the migration of modern Homo sapiens to Southeast Asia and Australia approximately 55,000 to 60,000 years ago or about the spread of Neolithic farmer-cultivators from the Middle East into Europe beginning about 9,000 to 10,000 years ago. I suspect that readers unfamiliar with modern human evolution will find the genetic tree of the world's populations on page 119 intriguing. The diagram shows, for example, that Northeast Asians are more closely related to Europeans than Northeast Asians are to Southeast Asians.
For as rapidly advancing a science as human population genetics, it should not be surprising that some findings are dated.Read more ›
Unfortunately, though he is quite sympathetic to the pygmies and their way of life, much of the effect is lost in empty generalities (p. 16: "The forest may look gloomy to us but pygmies feel entirely at home and safe there. It is a place where little that is untoward can happen to them, where danger is limited and life very pleasant."), and his cross-cultural examples come almost exclusively from pygmies or from his personal experience of various Western Europeans. Some points of history, used as examples, are in error (Bede was an English monk who lived from 672 or 673 to 735; not a "sixth-century Irish monk" p. 80).
Cavalli-Sforza also seems to have little knowledge of modern cultural anthropology.Read more ›
The author has been studying for sixty years what we can learn now, from differences in human body types, body chemistry, and DNA, about the past travels of the human race as it came to populate the entire world. I am astonished at how far I could see into the distant past through their work and words.
Words are a second theme of the book, how languages in general seem also, like modern people, to have had one ancient source and then diversified as early humans expanded. He shows how frequently languages spread without the populations involved being in any way replaced, and explains how some changes, such as inventing farming, were so beneficial that not only the new tongues but also the new body types spread widely from small original sources.
There are apparently four great streams of body types: African; Australian; what is called Caucasian; and what is considered Asian, with the last two at different times providing peoples who still have descendants living all the way from Span to different populations of American Indians.
Languages seem to include mainly the results of the four body types plus the results of four separate independent inventions of farming, in Palestine, in north China, in south China, and in central America. Finally the gunpowder and trading revolution in Europe largely replaced American languages, and then the industrial revolution, like farming, vastly expanded our total numbers.Read more ›
Most Recent Customer Reviews
Insightful, technical, interesting - I wanted to try and understand human origin and DNA mapping. At first difficult to read, but I was able to use it as a reference for DNA... Read morePublished 3 months ago by Gaye Hill
Imagine a scientist, Luigi Luca Cavalli-Sforza, recounting his professional life to his son, Francesco Cavalli-Sforza, a creator and producer of educational films. Read morePublished 12 months ago by Normand Hamel
It is a good book for the general public about human population genetics and its evolution. Not a lot of technical details but fun to read.Published 16 months ago by W. YIP
a great review of the history and findings related to the genetic origins of modern manPublished 18 months ago by Richard G. Rawlins
The Great Human Diaspora tracks the development of humans from their origin to their spread around the globe. It's the time span that is so striking. Read morePublished on December 18, 2013 by Marion T. Hill
My purchase to the The Great Human Diasporas: The History Of Diversity and Evolution cheap price, good quality, shipped on time in overall it was a good purchase!Published on November 16, 2013 by Abdulsalaam Al-Abdli
There was a great vacuum on the migration theories that Cavalli Sforza and Jared Diamond are filling with careful research and plenty of relevant scientific data. Read morePublished on May 24, 2013 by Tirso Campos Santillan
The author is an expert in his field. Perhaps I was hoping for a work just a little less dry and bit more populist, something more in the Richard Dawkins vein.Published on March 7, 2013 by Dr Garry