*** "Archaelogical" evidence we are posthuman already! ***
Recent research conducted at the University of Tennessee shows that
the increase of height in human skeletons over the last 100 years is
only the tip of an iceberg. If a C19th skeleton dug up in the future was
to western C20th / early C21st remains, there would be a large enough
catalogue of differences that they could be considered as two separate
Dr.'s Richard & Lee Meadows Jantz, husband & wife team of forensic
anthropologists, began researching their topic, to differentiate C19th &
C20th skeletons, in the 1980's ... with the goal of assisting law
investigations (murders &c) easier. About 15 years ago a nation-wide
database was set up that combined information from the Jantz's with the
University of Tennessee's extensive collection of remains, together with
Dr Mildred Trotter's reams of data from her work processing 1,000's of
bodies after WW2.
It was already known that size had grown several inches, but Jantz
quickly recognised that "the skeletons of modern people are strikingly
different from those of the (19th) century."
Big changes are apparent in
shapes and sizes of certain bones in legs and forearms that have changed
in proportion to the rest of the body. C19th and C20th skeletons can
be told apart, for example, because the C19th femur viewed in cross-
section is round while the C20th counter-part is "teardrop shaped."
There is a difference also in toughness of bones. Short, rounded
C19th skeletons are able to withstand greater stresses than the
modern, longer bone of a different shape. The inference is that
modern people don't have the skeletal toughness of their ancestors.
Various theories can be offered ... such as combination of better
nutrition and medical care, coupled with less exercise, has
triggered "fundamental biological changes in how (humans) grow."
As well as the fact that people walk far less in America
than previously, it is also true that individuals who would have died
in infancy today live long enough to have children of their own.
The work comparing skeletons across time carries on in other
countries and regions to see whether the same trend is duplicated
across the globe. Croatia and the Balkans have offered up a
tremendous amount of data that the Jantz's students are starting to
Since it is true that skeletal comparisons are the main source of
data for categorising and (placing in geography & time) the
various sub-human, pre-human and cro-magnon variants, I feel
that this evidence above all else goes to show that the transition
from classic "human" to "after-human" has already happened, at
least amongst a large swath of the technologically developed world.
There will probably be further changes over the next hundreds of years,
but significant enough data exist to indicate that WE are amongst the first
after-human generations of humanoids ... Transhumans happened
between Darwin and the baby-boomer generations, the future is here!
----- Original Message -----
Sent: Saturday, December 29, 2001 4:35 PM
Subject: Re: [posthuman] Eugenics ... in or offlist?
> Steve Nichols wrote:
> Hi Posthumans
> I have some interesting new evidence that supports
> the view that we are already posthuman, as against the
> transhuman/ extropian view that 500 more years are needed.
> Will post shortly.
Um, that's an incredibly tall order.
This archive was generated by hypermail 2b30 : Sat May 11 2002 - 17:44:32 MDT