Re: Australian Aboriginal history (was Re: [asa] The ASA and the Soft Sciences (ASA focus for the future- dreaming))

From: David Campbell <>
Date: Sat Jan 10 2009 - 18:47:54 EST

>> Off the subject. From where is it commonly believed that Aboriginals
>> descended? I don't believe they were part of the out of Africa group.
>> If that is too sensitive, don't bother, but do you know if any studies
>> have been done or what the current train of thought might be?

There's been some recent attempts at putting together a fairly global
sample of modern humans into a phylogeny. If I remember correctly,
the south Asian to Melanisian and Australian dark-skinned groups split
off close to the split between standard Asians and Europeans (i.e.,
part of the Out of Africa bunch). Mideastern populations were
transitional between Africa and everywhere else-geographically
unsurprising, but morphologically a bit of a surprise.

The area across Wallace's Line has unique freshwater invertebrates and
vertebrates as well as terrestrial forms-plants and animals. Most
Australian birds represent distinctive groups, despite convergence to
things from elsewhere (however, as birds fly, there have been some
crossings-the crows and jays are Aussies that got away, for example).
Rodents managed at least two invasions of Australia before humans.
The global flood followed by raft or walking repopulation model has to
explain how, e.g., the freshwater mussels made the trip. (According
to the bush tucker man, they aren't good eating, though I bet he
simply overcooked them.)

Dr. David Campbell
425 Scientific Collections
University of Alabama
"I think of my happy condition, surrounded by acres of clams"
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Received on Sat Jan 10 18:48:57 2009

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