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Africa

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African district, Guangzhou (Wikicommons: Anna Frodesiak)
Long a land of emigration, China has become one of immigration. Surprising? Not really. Life is now better there than in most of the Third World. Meanwhile, with fewer people leaving the Chinese countryside for the cities, employers have to offer higher wages and better working conditions ... or get their labor elsewhere. Finally, with... Read More
Skull from Broken Hill (Kabwe), Zambia.  Credit: Wikimedia Commons
Archaic humans were still around when the Neanderthals were going extinct in Europe
East Africa, 60,000 to 80,000 years ago. The relative stasis of early humans was being shaken by a series of population expansions. The last one went global, spreading out of Africa, into Eurasia and, eventually, throughout the whole world (Watson et al., 1997). Those humans became us. This expansion took place at the expense of... Read More
Togolese representation of a white man (source) In a previous post, I wrote that the recently published book De quelle couleur sont les Blancs ? was originally supposed to provide a new perspective on French race relations. How do the Français de souche perceive, imagine, and experience their increasingly multiracial society? What does it mean... Read More
“Neanderthal” admixture seems to be higher in West Africans than in East Africans. How come? (Source) When modern humans began their expansion from a small core somewhere in East Africa, the continent probably had several different archaic populations. It now seems that one of them was related to the Neanderthals in Europe. In an ongoing... Read More
Eboracum with the Colonia in the foreground and the fortress across the river. In my last two posts, I presented evidence that Roman York (Eboracum) was home to a large African community in the late 300s. This was due to the stationing of Nubian archers and other African legionnaires in this and other garrison towns... Read More
Figurines of Nubian archers (from Egypt) The Roman conquest of Britain brought not only cultural change but also profound ethnic change, i.e., an influx of soldiers, officials, and traders from elsewhere. Until recently, historians placed this influx mainly in the first century of Roman rule. As the native British became Romanized, they would have increasingly... Read More
Expansion of modern humans out of Africa and within Africa. Mellars (2006). When we discuss the origins of modern humans, the term ‘Out of Africa’ is a bit misleading. Our common ancestors came not from Africa as a whole but from a relatively small area somewhere in East Africa. Beginning around 80,000 years ago, this... Read More
In my previous posts, I’ve argued that China is entering a demographic transition that is already occurring in other developed countries, i.e., decline of the indigenous population and progressive replacement by higher-fertility immigrants. In this post, I’ll focus on how the initial phase will play out over the next ten years. The China of tomorrow... Read More
Since the mid-20th century, ‘skin bleaching’ has become more and more common among dark-skinned populations. It involves lightening skin color by means of topical preparations that contain hydroquinone, cortisone, or mercury. These products are effective, but prolonged use may damage the skin by making the epidermis thinner and by breaking down collagen fibers. Despite being... Read More
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