Just Labradors banner

1 - 20 of 129 Posts

·
Registered
Joined
·
8,472 Posts
Discussion Starter #1 (Edited)
I think this is monumental news and will have as much significance for revising anthropology and our understanding of human evolution as perhaps Alfred Wegener's recent concept of continental drift, Pangea, etc., has had for geology & geography:


Why Are Humans Different From All Other Apes? It’s the Cooking, Stupid
By DWIGHT GARNER Published: May 26, 2009​

Human beings are not obviously equipped to be nature’s gladiators. We have no claws, no armor. That we eat meat seems surprising, because we are not made for chewing it uncooked in the wild. Our jaws are weak; our teeth are blunt; our mouths are small. That thing below our noses? It truly is a pie hole.

To attend to these facts, for some people, is to plead for vegetarianism or for a raw-food diet. We should forage and eat the way our long-ago ancestors surely did. For Richard Wrangham, a professor of biological anthropology at Harvard and the author of “Catching Fire,” however, these facts and others demonstrate something quite different. They help prove that we are, as he vividly puts it, “the cooking apes, the creatures of the flame.”

The title of Mr. Wrangham’s new book — “Catching Fire: How Cooking Made Us Human” — sounds a bit touchy-feely. Perhaps, you think, he has written a meditation on hearth and fellow feeling and s’mores. He has not. “Catching Fire” is a plain-spoken and thoroughly gripping scientific essay that presents nothing less than a new theory of human evolution, one he calls “the cooking hypothesis,” one that Darwin (among others) simply missed.

Apes began to morph into humans, and the species **** erectus emerged some two million years ago, Mr. Wrangham argues, for one fundamental reason: We learned to tame fire and heat our food.

“Cooked food does many familiar things,” he observes. “It makes our food safer, creates rich and delicious tastes and reduces spoilage. Heating can allow us to open, cut or mash tough foods. But none of these advantages is as important as a little-appreciated aspect: cooking increases the amount of energy our bodies obtain from food.”....


http://www.nytimes.com/2009/05/27/books/27garn.html?emc=eta1

 

·
Registered
Joined
·
10,719 Posts
That theroy is about as new as a Model T Ford, I learned that in grade school. :rolleyes:

Just the SOS recycled, oh well if he thinks it's new so be it.;)
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
8,472 Posts
Discussion Starter #9 (Edited)
Interesting reading, I guess, for those who believe in evolution.
That's why I put the first word in the title: Evolution -- to warn Creationists and biblical literalists away. I respect non-believers but I'm an Episcopalian with no problem in accepting evolution as a fundamental truth.

I mentioned the significance of this theory (cooking → greater release of energy than raw food → evolution of modern humans) reminds me of the huge contribution Alfred Wegener made with his theory of continental drift.

Wegener proposed (ca. 1915-1920 at first) that all the continents were originally together in one large land mass (since then called Pangea, q.v.) but then broke apart, drifted, collided, crumpled and in those collisions formed mountain ranges.

This was scoffed at, ridiculed, refuted, by most of the world's most significant geological scientists. Finally, it was accepted in the 1960s and has been a key element in understanding our world. For instance, look at the eastern coast of South America and the western coast of Africa and notice how they can be positioned so they fit neatly together. Not only that, but the geological strata of each continent matches that of the adjacent parts. Differences and similarities in the distribution of species of animals (old vs. new world monkeys) and species of vegetation are understood by Wegener's contribution.

I expect this recognition of the importance of cooking -- as Wegener's contribution did for geology -- will lead to equivalent giant leaps in understanding the evolution of modern humans.

It's also interesting to consider the raw vs. manufactured diet for dogs in this light. Manufactured dog food is cooked and therefore must have much more energy available to the consumer than in raw food.

More on Wegener's continental drift:
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Continental_drift

For more on Wegener, Google him. Fascinating, perservering man deserving of far more fame than he's been given.
For example: http://www.ucmp.berkeley.edu/history/wegener.html

ETA: Wegener link

 

·
Registered
Joined
·
6,114 Posts
I know it's hard to fathom, but a lot of creationists and literal bible folks still like reading an interesting theory; doesn't mean they have to agree with it, but to "warn" them away is typically condescending. If you really welcomed all viewpoints the way you say you do, then you should be interested in what they have to say.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
16,129 Posts
I know the article talks about evolution... but this got me thinking...

In the bible... did Adam and Eve cook?
No. Mostly it was wheatgrass smoothies, Kombucha, tofu salads, etc. And what with the patchouli smell and all-night drum circles, one can forgive the snake for wanting them out of the neighborhood.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
8,472 Posts
Discussion Starter #13
I know the article talks about evolution... but this got me thinking...

In the bible... did Adam and Eve cook?
There's no mention of it, Linds. No mention of take out, either.

In their Garden of Eden, located in what is now southern Iraq, there were two trees -- the Tree of Life and the Tree of Knowledge.

I suppose we must presume they sustained themselves adequately by eating fruit/nuts/?? from the Tree of Life. Eve plucked an apple from the Tree of Knowledge (bless her heart, you go girl!) and the rest is history, as they say.

So, if Genesis is taken literally, it's to Eve that we owe graduations days, universities, modern medical science, exploration of space, mathematics, etc. .........



 

·
Registered
Joined
·
8,472 Posts
Discussion Starter #14
I know it's hard to fathom, but a lot of creationists and literal bible folks still like reading an interesting theory; doesn't mean they have to agree with it, but to "warn" them away is typically condescending. If you really welcomed all viewpoints the way you say you do, then you should be interested in what they have to say.
Not hard to fathom at all. But knowing that "a lot" does not mean "all," it was done that way so you'd be able to make the choice that best suits the person and makes them happy.

Your choice is to be offended by the comments of an evolutionist. Glad I could so easily accommodate you. :)


 

·
Registered
Joined
·
6,114 Posts
Honestly, you don't think warning people away is a little overly dramatic? Perhaps actually even designed to aggravate people?

You don't offend me, Bob. I think you're a bit of an overly officious twit but I don't find you offensive.

Sorry, I forgot the smiley to make it sound like my comment was all in good fun. :) There you go! :)
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
6,054 Posts
Okay, interesting reading from a creationist viewpoint.
But if you believe in evolution, doesn't cooking and tool usage go hand in hand? I mean how do you cook without tools? Even the most basic cooking over fire requires a few tools.

Reminds me of the old adage... which came first the tools or the cooking? Oh wait that was the chicken and the egg.

edited to add:
I thought cooking destroyed valuable vitamins and fiber? What happened to that argument?
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
8,472 Posts
Discussion Starter #17 (Edited)
Honestly, you don't think warning people away is a little overly dramatic? Perhaps actually even designed to aggravate people?
Knowing -- and liking very much -- some people like Labby and Nance who are biblical literalists and wanting a subtle way of alerting them that this was something they might be happier not reading, I chose the lead word in the title, evolution. If they are offended by my using that lead word, then I am truly sorry and deeply apologize; it was unintended.

It was done purely out of respect for them and people like them, and with not the slightest intention of aggravating.

I am very accustomed to receiving critical comments from you and a few others at most things I post.

To me, it says a lot that 90+% of these objections are never on the substance of what I've said but based on your (and others) mind reading, presumptions of my motives, and gross distortions of what I've said.

Gosh, one would almost think some people have taken lessons from Rush, **** and Glenn..... Ignore the substance, smear the attacker.

Officious? Do you know the definition? If that's a general reaction by people of your stripe, then golly, I must be doing something right. :) :) :) (Said in "good fun")

ETA: phrase in blue type.

 

·
Registered
Joined
·
6,054 Posts
Officious? Do you know the definition? If that's a general reaction by people of your stripe, then golly, I must be doing something right. :) :) :) (Said in "good fun")
Just to be helpful. I mean we haven't had any drama lately.

from Merriam Webster:
Officious: volunteering one's services where they are neither asked nor needed : meddlesome
:)
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
8,472 Posts
Discussion Starter #19
I thought cooking destroyed valuable vitamins and fiber? What happened to that argument?
That's what I've thought, too -- and it's what many people think.

But Wrangham offers a lot of evidence that on a completely raw diet, animals/people usually lose weight. Human castaway survivors -- like Alexander Selkirk who formed the basis for Robinson Crusoe -- cook their food in order to adequately survive.

That's why I mentioned the issue of feeding raw vs. feeding processed food to dogs. Something to consider.

 

·
Registered Users
Joined
·
10,466 Posts
In the bible... did Adam and Eve cook?
Don't know but you can bet all our modern day recipes evolved from them (that's if you believe in A&E to start with) :rolleyes: 'Tis because of those 2 that we now have things like McDonald's, Burger King, KFC, Donut King & ......... obesity! :eek:

So if you follow that line of thought, we can all blame A&E for most of our modern day diet related illnesses. Yep, those 2 have a lot to answer for alright. :rolleyes:
 
1 - 20 of 129 Posts
Top