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  • Tony Holden

Human families

All those millennia with stories and mythologies of origins and where we humans came from. Well, ‘Nelson South Wales’ and ‘Nelson Lancashire’ is our [unlikely] answer. / All those thousands of years before our current narratives from [say] science, cosmology, evolution and palaeontology. / All those years in books and life when there were only ‘men’! / And in my learning ‘hominid’ becomes ‘hominin’ and I realize that it is unwise to be rude about Neanderthals. And so: “The human family is complicated and, as the science develops, it is getting more so. We might want there to be a clear line of descent from the first hominin fossils, through various intermediate forms, to us; but the story just isn’t that simple, and instead we now know that there were more than twenty different types of human, much of the time coexisting [Rebecca Wragg Sykes ‘Kindred: Neanderthal Life, Love, Death and Art’ reviewed John Lancaster London Review of Books V42, 24].”

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