NEW! Evolutionary Tidbit of the Moment
In seemingly unrelated languages from every corner of the globe, the word corresponding to "mother" contains a sound like /ma/, as in "amma," "mama," or "ima." Father words tend to have the /pa/ or /ba/ sound, like "appa," "abba," "baba," or "papa." A discarded hypothesis held that the words for "mother" and "father" had remained largely unchanged from a proto-language from which all modern languages evolved.
The currently favored explanation is that these are the first sounds infants are able to make, with /m/ being slightly easier (and thus developing sooner) than /p/ or /b/, explaining why the primary caretaker (usually the mother) tends to be referred to by words which sound like "mama" in languages all the world over.
Author Archives: Christopher Lynn
Out this week in Ethos is a paper I wrote called “‘The Wrong Holy Ghost’” Discerning the Apostolic Gift of Discernment using a Signaling and Systems Theoretical Approach.” It’s about an incident I call “the wrong Holy Ghost” because that … Continue reading
On February 12, 2013, the UA EvoS Club hosted its 1st annual Darwin Day Colloquium. Aside from helping out with ALLELE speakers for the past few years, this was the first major activity of the UA EvoS Club, & I … Continue reading
I will do a more thorough summary from the Human Biology Association & American Association of Physical Anthropology annual joint conferences in the near future based on my rabid tweeting from sessions, but a few posters & talks are just … Continue reading
A publication came out in Consciousness & Cognition last year by a neuroscience group in Slovenia that starts off speculating that pursuing higher consciousness is “natural to the experience and potential growth of every human being.” They tested this by … Continue reading
Fireside hypnotizability Following up on a previous post tracking down the original sources for the December Smithsonian piece about hearth fires & cognitive evolution, evolutionary psychologist Matt Rossano’s “Did Meditating Make Us Human?” spins out a model similar to & … Continue reading
The December 2012 issues of Smithsonian Magazine had a fire theme, & archaeologist Thomas Wynn contributed a short piece on the influence of fire in the evolution of the human mind. He briefs the work of three researchers doing work … Continue reading
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I was critiqued in a recent NSF grant proposal review that, while I elegantly integrated signaling & cultural consensus theories in my research design, my statements that (1) signaling theory derives from evolutionary biology & (2) that no one has … Continue reading
For several years now I’ve been putzing around with a dissertation chapter &, subsequently, draft of a paper about the functional delimitations of consciousness. I’m starting to think about it again after a conversation with a philosophy student who had … Continue reading
When I did the strange-face-in-the-mirror illusion, I turned into a frickin’ werewolf! How cool is that? I should back up, right? I teach a course called “Primate Religion & Human Consciousness” & require students to come up with activities to … Continue reading