Free Essay on the Life of Early Homo Sapiens: Language, Hunting and Gathering, Paintings, Sculpture, and Music

Published: 2022-05-27 13:29:24
Free Essay on the Life of Early Homo Sapiens: Language, Hunting and Gathering, Paintings, Sculpture, and Music
Type of paper:  Research paper
Categories: Anthropology Human
Pages: 6
Wordcount: 1461 words
13 min read
143 views

There are different conflicting theories that have been postulated by different researchers in an attempt to explain the origin of mankind. There is the biblical account that does not feature the evolution of mankind as the question suggests. Hence, in order to understand the origin of mankind, particularly the development of Homo Sapiens, evolutionary theory will grossly be covered in this paper. The first remnants of Homo Sapiens have discovered 160000 years ago and these first modern humans made tools, had a more refined cognitive ability and use language and engaged in family life (Kortemeier 21). The only difference between Homo Sapiens and the modern human beings is cultural practices that emerged on the onset of settled agriculture. The primary objective of this paper is to discuss the life of early Homo Sapiens, their language, and the activities that they carried out to enhance their survival or portray their skills such as hunting and gathering, paintings, sculpture, and music.

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Homo Sapiens were more developed, unlike their predecessors. They had more advanced mental capabilities; a big skull to accommodate an evolved complex brain and was very dexterous and agile. Hence, they were able to adapt to different climatic conditions. These apes also possessed unique behaviors that are closely similar with that of human beings. Such actions were portrayed in their abilities to hunt and make tools from stones, bones and other materials that made their weapons effective for hunting. Their ability to make clothes was also shown by the evidence of needles. The population of these hominids was widespread, with their migration beginning from Africa, to Eurasia, Australia then ultimately settled in America. During their migration, they encountered different hominid species and in some instances interbreed with them, making the hominin species to become extinct. The first Homo Sapiens lived in small groups, especially in areas that were rich with food. They were able to make fire for heating, lighting, and cooking. Their ability to cook increased the variety of foodstuff that they could take. As a result, they developed different survival tactics such as hunting and farming.

Since the African climatic conditions could not favor the survival of Homo Sapiens, their migration to other continents begun 200000 years ago. According to China's Shandingdong man, these hominids created distinct regional cultures and highly resembled human beings (Pollard and Rosenberg 34). The apes had a more organized society and they were able to bury their dead. Homo Sapiens living in Eastern Asia reared livestock based on their tendency to follow herds of large mammals. They were never settled in one region, most probably because being pastoralist, they moved from one place to the next in search of pasture. They eventually crossed the ice bridge to Japan 16000 years ago.

Early Homo Sapiens were hunters and gatherers. They used modern cultural forms and developed effective communication skills. Their language was composed of the evolutionary milestone, more advanced skills of communication, use of body language in communication, phonemes and word creation (Facchini and Bacchin 14). They could utter twelve phonemes and their expressions were subtler and complex in meaning. They first developed a complex language 100000 years ago when Kung of Southern Africa and Hadza of Tanzania first offered contemporary examples of proto-language. Their hunting and gathering activities stopped 12 000 years ago but there are some hominids who continued with the practice up to now. For instance, San hunters of South Africa has been practicing hunting and gathering for a long period of time and it is believed that these practices originated from the early Homo Sapiens. The hominids would gather enough foods within three hours and created time for relaxation. They were highly egalitarian between sexes and the status of women in their society was very high.

Homo Sapiens was also very skillful in painting, drawing and composing music. Their drawings enhanced their understanding of the environment and it made them bond tightly with their kin groups. The drawings established an important mythology and they were vivid and realistic in depicting large game animals, for instance, the Art of Chauvet Cave. It is quite astonishing that their paintings had few depictions of humans and they were mainly handprints and abstract symbols. They made sculptures that were shaped by bones and stone tools, with most of them rendering the figurines of female and animals. One of the evidence that was found 35000 years ago that showed the existence of music during those times is a flute. The instrument made harmonic sounds and it provided a permanent symbolic expression.

During the agricultural revolution in 10000BCE, homo sapiens domesticated wild plants and animals. This resulted in an increase in their population. They changed their lifestyle from hunting and gathering to settled agriculture and pastoralism. They started growing crops and domesticating animals, with a dog being the first animal to be domesticated by homo sapiens. The second animal that was domesticated was the wild sheep of the Zagros Mountain. With the expansion of livestock, the hominids began practicing pastoralism. They would move from place to place in search of pasture and water for their livestock. Transhumant herders emerged at around 5500 BCE (Kortemeier 17). Their primary role was to produce meat, wool and dairy products which they exchanged with agriculturist who provided pottery, grains and other staples. Nomadic pastoralists were mainly found on the staple lands in the north of agricultural zone of southern Eurasia. They had no fixed home and used their livestock as means of transport during their movements.

Revolution in agriculture occurred across the world, and there were variations in agricultural practices across the continent due to geography, climate difference and social organizations (Ayala and Cela 56). The revolution in agriculture was first experienced in South West Asia, a fertile crescent that contains rich soils and regular rainfall. The hominids in these regions domesticated goats, cattle, sheep, and pigs. In East Asia, the Homo Sapiens mainly practiced agriculture. They grew rice on the Japanese islands that were formed by the rising sea levels. They first domesticated rice in 6500 BCE and millet by 5500 BCE. After most of the large animals that they had domesticated became extinct, they fully embarked on crop cultivation. The fertility and constant water from the Yellow and Yangzi River valleys attracted a lot of people and the area eventually became densely populated. Their skills in farming, the creation of tools and technical knowledge in grains later spread throughout East Asia. Afro-Eurasia Africa did not experience many agricultural activities by the hominids since there is less evidence of settled agriculture. The Sahel area experienced remarkable development in agriculture since the area was lush with many animals and grassland vegetation. The people in this region mainly grew sorghum and villages and towns sprung. They used chipped blades and pointed spears in hunting. However, they gradually changed to food production, pottery making and fishing along various coasts.

In Europe, domestication of wildlife was adopted from other regions of the world. Agricultural practices and social formation was very advanced in the Northern rim of Mediterranean Sea and along Danube and Rhine River valleys. Farmers in these regions mainly grew wheat and barley and reared sheep, cattle, and goats. With advancement in domestication, social organizations sprung up with the hominids coming up together to form villages. Some of the early settlements that made changes to settled agriculture are Eastern Anatolia, Mesopotamia, and Wadi en-Natuf (Darwin and Quammen 41). The community was stratified and certain areas were secluded as burial sites. With time, the gender relations between men and women evolved and males became dominant in leadership potions and agricultural households.

Homo Sapiens lived an advanced life as compared to other hominids. In fact, their life was almost similar to the modern life of a human being. They developed a rudimentary form of communication and employed phonemes and body language in relaying information. Some of the Homo sapiens were also hunters and gatherers depending on the climatic conditions of the areas they inhabited. Their error was marked by agricultural revolution since there is vivid evidence of farming activities that they carried across the globe. They also played music with the main instrument showing the existence music then was a flute. They painted and made sculptures and most of their paints were animals that represented their sexes.

Works Cited

Ayala, Francisco J, and Conde C. J. Cela. Processes in Human Evolution: The Journey from Early Hominins to Neanderthals and Modern Humans. 2017.

Darwin, Charles, and David Quammen. On the Origin of Species. Sterling, 2008.

Facchini, Fiorenzo, and Giorgio Bacchin. A Day with Homo Sapiens: Life 15,000 Years Ago. Twenty-First Century Books, 2003.

Kortemeier, Todd. Discovering the Origin of Human Life. 2016.

Pollard, Elizabeth, and Clifford D. Rosenberg. Worlds Together, Worlds Apart: A Companion Reader. 2016.

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Free Essay on the Life of Early Homo Sapiens: Language, Hunting and Gathering, Paintings, Sculpture, and Music. (2022, May 27). Retrieved from https://speedypaper.com/essays/the-life-of-early-homo-sapiens-language-hunting-and-gathering-paintings-sculpture-and-music

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