The first episode of Becoming Human -- a three-part NOVA documentary
on what the latest scientific research reveals about our hominid
relatives -- will air on November 3, 2009, on public broadcasting
stations around the country. According to NOVA:


Part 1, "First Steps," examines the factors that caused us to split
from the other great apes. The program explores the fossil of "Selam,"
also known as "Lucy's Child." Paleoanthropologist Zeray Alemseged
spent five years carefully excavating the sandstone-embedded fossil.
NOVA's cameras are there to capture the unveiling of the face, spine,
and shoulder blades of this 3.3 million-year-old fossil child. And
NOVA takes viewers "inside the skull" to show how our ancestors'
brains had begun to change from those of the apes. Why did leaps in
human evolution take place? "First Steps" explores a provocative "big
idea" that sharp swings of climate were a key factor.


Further information about the film, including a preview, interviews,
and interactive features, is available at NOVA's website. Information
on finding local public broadcasting stations is available via PBS's

For further information, visit:

For information on local stations, visit:

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Replies to This Discussion

I look forward to watching this, and I like the way they describe the juvenile hominid as a "child" Perhaps if we routinely referred to other young apes as "children," humans would treat them better.

A big problem for theists who DO believe in evolution, which may still be the majority, if figuring out just when God added the soul to the animal. Homo rhodesiensis or later? And why didn't He give us any way to detect the presence of our own souls? Kinda rude, if you ask me, like putting a post-it note on a coworker's butt.
THANKS for reminding me Louis!!! I've been dying to see this.
Looks promising!! I'm just finishing Dawkins' latest book.
I finally got around to watching part 1. Watching it I felt how nature and scientific study and explanation of it is so much more majestic than god did it.


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