Complex topography and human evolution: the missing link

Isabelle Catherine Winder, Geoffrey King, M. Deves, Geoff Bailey

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Why did humans walk upright? Previous models based on adaptations to forest or savannah are challenged here in favour of physical incentives presented by steep rugged terrain—the kind of tectonically varied landscape that has produced early hominin remains. “Scrambler man” pursued his prey up hill and down dale and in so doing became that agile, sprinting, enduring, grasping, jumping two-legged athlete that we know today.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)333-349
Number of pages17
Issue number336
Publication statusPublished - Jun 2013

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© Antiquity Publications Ltd 2013. This is an author-produced version of the published paper. Uploaded in accordance with the publisher’s self-archiving policy. Further copying may not be permitted; contact the publisher for details


  • Africa
  • Kenya
  • South Africa
  • hominins
  • bipedalism
  • terrestrialisation
  • tectonic landscape
  • rift valleys

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