Race And Human Evolution

February 15, 1998

"Race and Human Evolution" is not only the title of a AAAS session organized by U-M anthropologists Milford Wolpoff and Rachel Caspari. It's also the title of their recent book published by Simon & Schuster. In their book, Wolpoff and Caspari describe the "Out of Africa" theory of human origins, which holds that all living people are descendants of a single common ancestor named Eve. Wolpoff and Caspari maintain that both the fossil record and genetic data support a multi-regional theory of human evolution. According to this theory, human populations evolved concurrently in various regions over the past two million years. In other words, we have many ancestors, not just one.

The U-M anthropologists also point out how the continuing debate over human origins and different races has profound social and political implications. As paleontologists, Wolpoff and Caspari have traveled to London, Zagreb, Capetown, Canberra and Beijing. As husband and wife, they live with their children in Michigan. For more information or to arrange an interview, contact Diane Swanbrow at (734) 647-4416 or e-mail swanbrow@umich.edu.
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University of Michigan

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