Chapter

Introduction

Sigrid Schmalzer

in The People's Peking Man

Published by University of Chicago Press

Published in print December 2008 | ISBN: 9780226738598
Published online March 2013 | e-ISBN: 9780226738611 | DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.7208/chicago/9780226738611.003.0001
Introduction

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How has evolutionary science shaped what it means to be human? Who is privileged to speak on the subject of human identity, using what forms of knowledge? These questions are debated throughout the modern world. For readers relatively unfamiliar with Chinese history, this book will be an opportunity to explore common concerns in a different context. This introductory chapter first discusses Chinese conceptions about evolutionary science and its influence on Chinese socialism, and then describes two popular characters in twentieth-century paleoanthropology—Peking Man and Wild Man—which will guide the book's exploration of Chinese history.

Keywords: human evolution; human identity; Chinese history; socialism; Peking Man; Wild Man

Chapter.  6015 words.  Illustrated.

Subjects: History of Science and Technology

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