23 April 2018 - 9 Iyyar 5778 - ט' אייר ה' אלפים תשע"ח
Arts & Culture
Remains of earliest modern human outside of Africa unearthed in Israel E-mail

A jawbone complete with teeth dated to 177,000-194,000 years ago has been found in northern Israel, suggesting that modern humans left Africa at least 50,000 years earlier than previously thought.

The fossil of an adult upper jawbone with several teeth was discovered at the Misliya cave, one of several prehistoric cave sites located on Mount Carmel. “This finding – that early modern humans were present outside of Africa earlier than commonly believed – completely changes our view on modern human dispersal and the history of modern human evolution,” said Prof. Israel Hershkovitz of Tel Aviv University.

The common consensus among anthropologists has been that modern humans appeared in Africa roughly 160,000200,000 years ago, based on fossils found in Ethiopia, and that modern humans evolved in Africa and started migrating out of Africa around 100,000 years ago.

“But if the fossil at Misliya dates to roughly 170,000190,000 years ago, the entire narrative of the evolution of Homo sapiens must be pushed back by at least 100,000200,000 years,” added Prof. Hershkovitz. “In other words, if modern humans started travelling out of Africa some 200,000 years ago, it follows that they must have originated in Africa at least 300,000-500,000 years ago.”

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Israeli musical artists perform in Myanmar E-mail

Top Israeli musical artists Dganit Daddo and Yuval Kedar performed in Yangon as part of a three-day cultural event held in Myanmar in January.

Their first engagement was a music concert at the Israeli ambassador’s residence on 23 January during a book-launch event for the Myanmar translation of A Brief History of Human Kind by Yuval Noah Harari, translated by U Hane Latt.

The duo also performed in a programme at the Arts Hall of Yangon University on 24 January to honour the UN International Holocaust Remembrance Day. The following day, they performed a concert for teach ers and students at the National University of Arts and Culture Yangon. Nir Balzam, deputy head of mission of the Embassy of Israel, also gave a brief presentation on Israel and Israeli culture.

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Paul McCartney to receive Israel’s prestigious Wolf Prize E-mail

Ex-Beatles singer and songwriter Paul McCartney is one of two recipients of the 2018 Wolf Prize in Music, Israel’s President Reuven Rivlin announced in February.

Each year the Wolf Foundation awards US$100,000 prizes in five fields. More than 30 winners have gone on to receive the Nobel Prize.

The announcement called McCartney “one of the greatest songwriters of all time. His versatility underlies an extraordinary wingspan, from the most physical rock to melodies of haunting and heartbreaking intimacy. His lyrics have an equally broad range, from the naïve and the charming to the poignant and even desperate. He has touched the hearts of the entire world, both as a Beatle and in his subsequent bands, including Wings.”

McCartney shares the prize with conductor Adam Fischer, whom the prize committee called “an eloquent defender of human rights”, particularly for “his protest against the political developments in his native Hungary”.

Seven other prizes were announced in the fields of mathematics, chemistry, physics and agriculture.

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