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Mary Leakey. Source Wikipedia. Image credit National Institutes of Health
Origin of Our Species by Chris Stringer
In this morning’s BBC Radio 4 The Life Scientific series Jim Al-Khalili meets leading paleoanthropologist Chris Stringer to find who our ancestors were.
As a post graduate Chris went on a road trip with a difference, driving round Europe in an old Morris Minor measuring Neanderthal skulls. After being thrown out of several countries, the results of his analysis led to a controversial theory which ran counter to what many people thought at the time. Chris suggested that our most recent relative originated in Africa. He also reveals how genetics has transformed his work and talks about his own unconventional origins.
That there were cannibals in Somerset is one of the more surprising findings of Chris’ work on early man in Britain and Jim discovers what it’s like to work on an archaeological dig.
Producer: Geraldine Fitzgerald.