Sunday, September 20, 2009

The "Real" Eve & Co.

We're doing ancient history again this year (round two with my older daughter, round one with the first grader). We started with a short discussion on archaeology and early humans. We also discussed the transition from nomadic lifestyles (paleolithic era) to farming (neolithic era).

So, while this subject is on my mind, I thought I'd share a few resources along these lines...
  • The Real Eve (PBS documentary explaining genetic anthropology; probably suitable for middle school students and older; you might need to break viewing up into two or three sessions since this is a 90-minute video)

Here are a few additional discussion ideas for biblical tie-ins:
  1. How are Adam (Genesis 2:15) and his sons (Genesis 4:2b) described? Do these descriptions sound more consistent with what we know about the lifestyle practices of nomads or farmers? Do some research on the origins of farming (agriculture) and shepherding. When did these professions begin?

  2. Challenge Question: If Adam and Eve were the first humans, but farming practices didn't begin until around 10,000 years ago, possibly a little earlier, what possible challenges does that create, given the fact that genetic and paleo-archeological data places the first humans between 60,000 to 150,000 years ago? What possible solutions could be proposed to this problem without compromising the historicity of Adam and Eve as real people?

  3. According to Genesis 9:20, what did Noah do after the flood? When did vineyard planting and wine-making begin? How would knowing this information possibly help us date Noah's flood?

  4. Many archaeologists believe the "tower of Babel" describes a Mesopotamian Ziggurat. Assuming this is the case, when might the events described in Genesis 11:1-9 have taken place?

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