When the first fossils began to be found in eastern Africa, in the late 1950s, I thought, what a wonderful marriage this was, biology and anthropology. I was around 16 years old when I made this particular choice of academic pursuit.
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Evolution explains our biological evolution, but human beings are very unique creatures. As the Dobzhansky said, all animals are unique; humans are the uniquest. And that uniqueness of being human, language, art, culture, our dependency on culture for survival, comes from the combination of traditional biological evolution.
I don't think we interbred with the Neanderthals at all. There are some people who think that there was some level of interbreeding. I think that we look so biologically different, that we looked and we acted so different, and we culturally were so different that we would not have had interbreeding between two species.
What's changed is we now have good anatomical, geological, archaeological evidence that Neanderthals are not our ancestors. When I wrote 'Lucy,' I considered Neanderthals ancestors of modern humans. We have gone back twice the age of Lucy, six million years. And we see that upright bipedal walking goes back that far in time.