It looks like you're using an Ad Blocker.
Please white-list or disable AboveTopSecret.com in your ad-blocking tool.
Some features of ATS will be disabled while you continue to use an ad-blocker.
Clues from genetics, archaeology and geology suggest our ancestors were nearly wiped out by one or more environmental catastrophes in the Late Pleistocene period. At one point, the numbers of modern humans living in the world may have dwindled to as few as 10,000 people.
Flirting with extinction
By a strange twist of fate, the harsh conditions that caused this near extinction may also have allowed the cultural explosion that gave rise to human behaviour as we know it today.
Professor David Goldstein, a molecular biologist at University College in London, has uncovered evidence of a very ancient population bottleneck. A bottleneck is an event that reduces the genetic difference, or diversity, in a population of animals.
One way this can occur is through a catastrophe that wipes out a large proportion of a population. If we compare the genes of modern people from all over the world, they are remarkably similar, suggesting that the ancestors of all living people expanded from a small population that survived a bottleneck. The ancient bottleneck proposed by Professor Goldstein must have occurred in Africa, where modern humans evolved.
"Our data suggests there was a bottleneck that was not that recent," says Goldstein. The genetic data puts the likely date for this event at just before 100,000 years ago. www.bbc.co.uk...
Originally posted by M157yD4wn
2. Our current systems of government. With the rise in welfare and government assisted living, it may be that people are popping children out to collect. Also in turn to feed the family. This second one though, ive seen it more often in Urban centers and such.
Originally posted by AshleyD
Of course most people here know I do not accept the entire theory of evolution as an explanation for our origins. But my reply will be an answer in accordance with the OP's assumption that evolution is the explanation for the diversity of life on our planet.
This question and those similar have been on my mind for a while. If you think about it, modern humans do a lot that is against the grain of normal evolutionary standards.
Instead of survival of the fittest, we have compassion for the disabled. Instead of seeing a limit of resources and limiting our offspring accordingly, we continue to engage in sexual relations as an expression of love- not a mere need of perpetuation of the species. Instead of being symbiotic in nature with our environment, we strip resources due to greed.
What I think this is, is due to the development of advanced cognitive abilities. To relate it specifically to your question, while sex in the past was mostly meant as a means of procreation, in our time it is a symbol of love, companionship, and life mating. It's become a form of relationship bonding and that is something humans, as a social species, is not willing to do without.
In an odd way the entirety of evolutionary theory doesn't have to be accepted in order to pursue this discussion.
What we see here is a direct correlation between nations with the highest population growth and their infant mortality rate, furthermore these nations are are the lower spectrum of resource availability (ie. poverty).
1. Disillusionment with the optimistic assumptions of human progress and with the universality and the regularity of the laws of science; hence, lack of faith in the previously established order.
2. The uncoupling of economic forces underlying social conformity, such as the need for women to marry advantageously to survive financially and to transmit their class status to the next generation, or the need to bear children in wedlock for them to inherit family land or other property that would be their source of livelihood.
3. The influence of the electronic media, which both reflect and legitimize family diversity.
For people living in desperate poverty in developing countries, there are many social and economic reasons for having several children
- A larger family is often perceived as a richer family - “richer” in terms of security and status, as well as enjoyment and quality of life. A family with many children may carry weight in community affairs.
- In some societies, the number of children she bears - especially the number of sons - largely determines a woman’s status. To have no sons may result in desertion or divorce.
- Needy parents often choose to have more children as they have the very real fear that some of their children may not live to adulthood, because of a lack of nutritious food, health care, clean water and adequate shelter.
- Children can contribute to the family income and help with the household chores. Often, by the time children reach their teens, they earn more than they themselves consume. If just one child is clever enough to do well at school and find a secure job, he or she may eventually be able to support the whole family.
- Since old-age pensions do not exist in many developing countries, impoverished parents need children who will be able to care for them when they are too old or sick to keep working.
- On the other hand, some parents may wish to limit the size of their families, but do not have information about or access to methods of family planning.