Patrick Timpone


Professor Richard W. Wrangham

How Cooking Made Us Human

Richard Wrangham, a primatologist and anthropologist, has spent four decades observing wild chimpanzees in, Uganda, Africa to see what their behavior might tell us about prehistoric humans. Dr. Wrangham, 61, was born in Britain and since 1989 has been at Harvard, where he is a professor of biological anthropology. His main interest is in the question of human evolution from a behavioral perspective. He is the author, with Dale Peterson, of Demonic Males: Apes, and the Origins Of Human Violence , and his latest book, “Catching Fire: How Cooking Made Us Human,” was published in late May 2009.


Show Highlights:

-The evolution of humans

-What were our ancestors like 4 million years ago?

-Why is it so difficult to grasp the concept of evolution? The puzzle for many people is the nature of creation

-Primates with big brains pay for it by having a small gut; Humans have the smallest guts of all primates and the biggest brain

-How cooking made us human: Dr. Wrangham thinks that cooking is what shifted apes to evolve into a human; we’ve doubled the size of the brain from 2 million years ago. Dr. Wrangham ties it all together

-Cooking provided more nutrients which created a bigger brain

and so much more!

Kibale Chimpanzee Project



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