Oct/Nov 2014

e c l e c t i c a
s a l o n


(This is an excerpt—click on the title to view the whole piece!)

Human, all too Human

According to one theory now in vogue, something happened about 50,000 years ago that changed our species from being merely the best and brightest among a number of humanoid species into a being of a different order entirely: a genetic mutation that occurred in one individual and that spread quickly throughout the species. The mutation made possible what we consider thought and language (according to this theory, based presumably on genetic evidence, language exists for thought, not as a means of communication, for which purpose it is actually ill-suited). Soon we were not only thinking but singing, painting, philosophizing, and inventing bigger and better weapons.

Thomas J. Hubschman