One of the key developments of the Neoltihic Period is the practise of the domestication of animals and plants, programmes of selective reproduction
that produce sought after physical and behavioural modifications, that facilitates the exploitation of these species and increases the potential of
Whilst as i said this is one of the key aspects of Neolithic development, the evidence from the earliest Neolithic period suggests that this was a
gradual process at several key sites that only occured once other social factors were in place, that other criteria had to set this in motion within
What is never considered is that those human societies themselves were first made aware of the potential of selective reproduction due to their being
a product of such, a highly heretical consideration, despite there being evidence to support such.
It has become increasingly evident in recent years that a new people arose in the core Neolithic region of Northern Syria/Anatolia that went on to
become the Eurasians, that Indo-European languages and culture trace back to that region, that genetic traits such as blue eyes, blonde hair,
whiteness, date back to the onset of the early Neoltihic period.
Science provides the means for observing and dating such changes, archeology provides the context and evidence
, this of course requiring interpretation. The only principles generally considered are those of chance and circumstance, but in my opinion these in
themselves give rise to the consideration of agenda.
We need to look then at what the evidence says occured;
Piontek and Vančata did in 2002 study the skeletal material from many of the areas that were affected by the neolithization. They found a
great difference between the pre-neolithic and the neolithic groups in body size, body proportions, bone shape and robustness.
Combined with biological and ecological studies on the prehistoric environment (which the humans lived in), many anthropologists still discuss whether
the changes of the Neolithic human body were only due to evolution, or if migration in some form should still be considered. This of course changes
from area to area, but morphologically there seems to be some pronounced differences between the late Palaeolithic or Mesolithic skeletons and the
Early Neolithic, in several parts of Europe. The changes are not only seen in the cranial form, but also in the limb proportions etc. These changes
are explained as either genetic (migration) or ecological (evolution).
Cranial measurements show that the Mesolithic cranial forms are a mixture of the Palaeolithic and the Neolithic types. Thus some of the morphological
changes around the neolithization must definitely be due to adaptation, and should therefore be seen as answer to both climatic changes and the
effects of the changed diet (evolution due to ecological factors). This however still cannot explain why some groups change profoundly while others
don’t - even though they all undergo the same cultural changes!
Studies on cranial morphology in Anatolia and the Levant reveal that the first farmers were a very mixed group. A variation like this is not known
from the rest of Europe. This could be due to a genetic bottle neck among the Anatolian groups that only led a small genetic variation through to
NEOLITHIZATION AND THE HUMAN BODY
As can be seen at the end of the quote, the given reason for these profound changes from the core Neolithic region is that a 'genetic bottleneck' had
occured, which is to say a great many diverse variations went into the mix, but what emerged was of a more particular nature, which is of course what
one will observe with any programme of selective breeding.
The changes then are notable, yet the question remains what gave rise to such, one should thus look to the archaelogical evidence to see if anything
can be discerned;
Community Structure at Neolithic Çatalhöyük:
There appears to be evidence for the division of the site along two main descent groups, or moieties.
These groups appear to be phenotypically distinct based on dental metrics and morphology, and they were physically separate from each other living at
opposite ends of the site, north and south.
These groups likely exchanged mates with each other, although it is more likely that females were brought in from other sites.
Differences between males and females within Çatalhöyük and between Çatalhöyük, Aşıklı Höyük, and Musular indicate that Çatalhöyük
likely participated in a patrilocal post-marital residence practice.
It appears that females were migrants from other sites in the region and that males were the less mobile sex within Çatalhöyük and without. In
other words, males did not appear to emigrate from or migrate to Çatalhöyük at the scale that females appear to have done both.
The authors of this study suggest that there was a genetic bottleneck in Central Anatolia as populations moved into Europeand their data supports an
exogenous origin of European Neolithic farmers.
It could, therefore, be possible that the Neolithic sites of Çatalhöyük and Aşıklı Höyük are in fact ancestral populations to this late
sample, and other later populations.
This study found that house interment was only minimally related to biological affinity and that ties to the home were not solely based on biology.
It is likely that burial location choice, and by inference, the social structure of Çatalhöyük was much more complex and incorporated a different
meaning of kin than one based solely on familial relations
Thus one sees that the manner in which a society such as Catalhoyuk was set up might provide some insight into as to why a new population type
occured, this is the aspect that needs to be furthur considered.
It was James Melaart who first proposed the great Goddess theory of Anatolia, due to the abundance of fertility type Goddess figurines, but this i
think needs more specific context, this being that there is much iconography at Catalhoyuk showing interest in cellular geometric pattern based on the
hive of the honeybee, and it can be proposed that this was their basis for living accomodation/town planning.
It was long considered that one mural at Catalhoyuk was a town plan with volcano seen in the background, more recently its been re-considered as hive
pattern iconography with leopard skin above, but the mistake would be easily made, as can be seen were this is compared to Australian aborigine
If it can be seen that the design for living was after the honeybee, then one also needs to re-consider the role of the 'great Goddess' in terms of
the Queen Bee.
What the establishment of such a set up would provide is that one could maintain a contolled strain, in terms of a breeding programme, were singular
mothers are understood as responsible for generating a particular type, and thus elevated in status, thus the adapation of this model provides a
means for controlled reproduction and establishes the premise in nature.
edit on 31-8-2012 by Kantzveldt because: typo