Wrangham plans to use this material in the Core's Science B-29: "Human Behavioral Biology," popularly known as "Sex." He was one of the course's three professors last fall and will take on greater teaching duties next fall after Professor of Biological Anthropology Irven DeVore's retirement.
Wrangham said he has experienced a great deal of crossover between his research and his teaching.
In fact, it is this link between his classes and his research work that led to his new discovery.
"The idea came to me while I was thinking about human evolution in preparation for my class, and I just happened to be at home staring at the fire," he said. He was planning for Anthropology 115: "Primate Evolutionary Ecology" in February last year.
Many of the key ideas came quickly, he said.
"In a few minutes, I had sketched out the importance fire could play in human evolution," Wrangham said. "In a few days, I had checked on crucial dates that would make the idea plausible."
Gathering evidence in support of the hypothesis largely involved finding the date man first harnessed fire.
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