Human evolution

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Are humans still evolving?

Brian Cox and Robin Ince ask whether human beings are still evolving?
Are humans still evolving?

Brian Cox and Robin Ince are joined by comedian and author David Baddiel,  Professor of Evolutionary Genetics Aoife McLysaght, and geneticist and broadcaster Adam Rutherford to ask whether human beings are still evolving?  Has the invention of modern medicine, and  technology meant that survival of the fittest is a thing of the past or are humans evolving new adaptations that will help us cope and survive better in our ever changing world (better thumbs for texting anyone?).  If evolution happens over 1000's of years, could we even tell if we were evolving as a species, or have  humans reached peak human?

Producer: Alexandra Feachem
Spear or harpoon

Steven McKenzie

BBC Scotland Highlands and Islands reporter

The harpoon and axes were made from red deer antler by hunter-gatherers in Highlands in the Mesolithic period.

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Human feet

Angus Davison

Science reporter

Our big toe was one of the last parts of the foot to become human-like, as our early ancestors evolved to walk on two legs.

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Alice Roberts on human and Neanderthal interbreeding

How DNA sequencing provided the evidence that humans and Neanderthals interbred.

Why do we love to dance with each other?

Dancing makes us feel good...but dancing together is even better
People in Havana know that dancing makes us feel good. And Cuban dancers Toto and Adriana are convinced that dancing together makes us feel even better.

As well as being fun, dancing might have helped us to survive as a species. Evolutionary anthropologist Bronwyn Tarr from the University of Oxford explains that when we dance with others, we are rewarded with feel-good endorphins that change how we feel about ourselves and those around us.

This video accompanies an episode of CrowdScience - Why do humans dance? https://www.bbc.co.uk/programmes/w3cswvwj

How has dancing helped us survive as a species?

And it wasn't all about finding a mate...
Whether at weddings, festivals or in our own homes, we often associate dancing with moments of joy and frivolity. But dance might have played a much more important role in our history. Evolutionary anthropologist Bronwyn Tarr from Oxford University explains how dance may have been vital to our survival as a species.

(Photo: Friends dancing on a rooftop. Credit: Getty Images)