Crafting stone and hypotheses

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February 08, 2013

The changing way we view evidence is a lot like knapping stone to make a tool. We chip away at one idea and shape it into something different. John Shea is a noted archaeologist and iconoclast, arguing“advances” in stone tool technology were responses to particular needs and not necessarily evidence of increased cognition. In an article published in the journal Science this week, Michael Balter profiles Shea’s view the earliest members of our species nearly 200,000 years ago were as fully human as we believe ourselves to be today.