German Dziebel holds a B.A. in History from St. Petersburg State University (Russia), a Ph.D. in Ethnology from the Peter the Great Museum of Anthropology and Ethnology (St. Petersburg, Russia), an M.A. in Sociology from Central European University (Warsaw, Poland), an M.A. in Anthropology and a Ph.D. in Anthropology from Stanford University (Stanford, U.S.A). He spent two quarters as an exchange student at the University of Chicago.
Primarily a student of human kinship systems, social and symbolic evolution, transculturation, ethnicity, branding and critical theory, German Dziebel was trained as a multi-field anthropologist (traditional four-field approach plus sociocultural, interpretivist anthropology). He studied physical anthropology under Nadezhda Tsvetkova and Alexander Kozintsev (St. Petersburg State University), archaeology under Abram Dridzo, Vladimir Buzin (St. Petersburg State University) and Tom Dillehay (Vanderbilt University), linguistics under Michael Silverstein and Kostas Kazazis (University of Chicago), Andrew Garrett (University of California – Berkeley), Phil Baldi (Penn State University) and Merritt Ruhlen (Stanford University), population genetics under Alexander Kozintsev (St. Petersburg University) and Joanna Mountain (Stanford University, 23andMe), statistics under Henryk Banaszek (Central European University), sociology, ethnology and ethnic theory under Vladimir Popov, Valerian Kozmin, Alexander Gadlo (St. Petersburg State University), Sławomir Kapralski, Zdzisław Mach (Central European University), Ray Fogelson and Terrence Turner (University of Chicago, Cornell University), semiotics under Albert Baiburin (European University at St. Petersburg), sociocultural anthropology under Sylvia Yanagisako, Jane and George Colliers, social studies of science under Joan Fujimura (University of Wisconsin – Madison), philosophy under Richard Rorty (Stanford University) and Jean-Pierre Dupuy (École Polytechnique, Stanford University), literary studies under Jeffrey Schnapp (Harvard University) and Rene Girard (Stanford University), Native American studies under Ray Fogelson (University of Chicago), Matthew Snipp (Stanford University) and Robert Warrior (University of Illinois, Urbana-Champaigne), American history under Richard White (Stanford University).
German Dziebel is Chief Strategy Officer at Resource and Scientific Consultant at the Great Russian Encyclopedia. He is based in New York, U.S.A. His other sites are www.kinshipstudies.org, www.indianism.net and www.anthropreneur.com. The views expressed on his websites are his own and do not represent the views of his employers.
Greetings, Dr. Dziebel.
There is a series of posts on the recent Bouckaert/Atkinson article at http://geocurrents.info/, which you might find interesting. They are from a historical linguistic and geographic-cartographic perspective.
Mismodeling Indo-European Origin and Expansion: Bouckaert, Atkinson, Wade and the Assault on Historical Linguistics
Quentin Atkinson’s Nonsensical Maps of Indo-European Expansion
Why the Indo-European Debate Matters—And Matters Deeply
I am happy to have discovered your blogs.
Thank you Alfia. I didn’t know about these articles. Welcome to the blog!
[…] and b) the reconstruction of the evolution of Austronesian sibling terminologies. (As a reader informs me, the former has recently caused an outrage in some circles sympathetic to traditional […]
I found your blog most interesting, thank you.
You have the ability to think wide and not to be afraid of uncharted territories…
Thank you for your attention to my model of earlier shift to articulated speech in East Asian and Australian populations. Please take into account that I strictly distinguish language and speech and consider that language was present in so called “Homo erectus” (more correctly, archaic Homo sapiens), and when I talk about the East Asians, I suggest they developed speech, not language.
I did not use the fact of the linguistic diversity of these regions (as you did), instead I used the information on the incidence of stuttering, dyslexia, and acquisition of phonology which is also very telling. It is good that our approaches, coming from different directions, coincide.
Re the absence of signs of human behavior in East Asia: it is most likely, that for hundreds of thousands of the years humans were using coloring substances, but were using them mostly for their own bodies. The fact that in Europe they started using painting for the caves is more of a local peculiarity of European populations, not the proof of the absence of modern behavior among East Asians or Australians. By the way, Africa is way behind of Europe as well in this, as scholars are baffled why modern morphology is not accompanied by modern behavior so spectacularly as in Europe.
Re lullabies. You probably have not heard, that there are plenty of collective lullabies recorded in many cultures of the world, so lullaby as a solo song form by necessity is a misconception. Actually, virtually in all polyphonic cultures (like in Georgia, or African cultures, or Balkans) people have polyphonic lullabies as well. from the historical point of view, this is hardly surprising, as the first hominid/human bands lived in groups, not in small families. So children were not put to sleep by their mothers on their own, but most likely were going to sleep in a communal setting (most likely on the background of communal humming, kind of human “contact calls”). I have recently finished a book where I specially discuss that collective lullaby was most likely the original one, and that the solo lullaby is a product of much later epoch with separated families, houses etc…
Anyway, thank you for your most interesting blog and thought-provoking ideas.
Also good to hear we are both originally from the same country.
With the very best regards,
Thank you very much for reading through my website and leaving some invaluable comments. I consider your explanation of the continental differences in the patterns of speech vs. music one of the most creative insights in human origins research.
I must say that my interest in evolutionary musicology is a very recent one: I learned about Lomax’s work and your work through Victor Grauer who kindly sent me a copy of your book Who Asked the First Question?. I’ve never been trained in musicology or music (it’s a shame considering that my mother was a pianist at the St.Petersburg Musorgsky Opera and Ballet Theater all her life and I grew up playing with children of some famous musicians), hence my knowledge of it is superficial and often flawed. (Thank you for correcting my mistake regarding lullabies – I’ll post a correction in the text itself.) I wish ethnomusicology was taught as part of the “four-field” approach to anthropology, but alas.
I haven’t read your latest book, which I absolutely should.
I love your thoughts on Upper Paleolithic art as a “local development” from the more ancient and pervasive body art. This explains why we don’t find examples of cave art until much later in the Americas. This is consistent with my hunch that hominin traditions in the less populous “East” (Asia-Pacific) have been less objectified, more inward-turned than the hominin traditions in the “West” (Europe and Africa). Correspondingly, the traditional reliance on lithics as necessary indications of hominin presence is not justified for such regions as the New World.
I’m also sympathetic toward your ideas about cannibalism, although I don’t know the literature well enough. The routine destruction and consumption of the bodies of fellow humans (including relatives) by hominin populations may explain the paucity of human and hominin fossil remains, again especially noticeable in Asia-Pacific and the Americas. Interestingly, our knowledge of Denisovans in South Siberia comes from just a tooth and a pinkie – nothing else has survived, so the question is ‘why’?
Just to clarify your thoughts on the language vs. speech distinction: If it wasn’t speech, what form did language exist in at the Homo erectus stage?
Thank you again for your comments and for all your work on the evolution of music. You are always welcome to leave comments on this site.
German, can you help me please?
I’m trying to find information about the Tutkaul burials.mentioned by Anne Dambricourt-Malasse, because in her 2008 paper she described the people as not belonging to any known geographical type but she didn’t go into details.
I’m sure you’re aware of the persistence of hunter-foragers in that region with a very archaic toolkit, that some have questioned the toolmakers were Homo sapiens at all despite the tool tradition persisting into the middle of the Holocene. Others have of course suggested that the entire Gissar-Markansou tradition represents survivors from an early wave of Homo sapiens migration out of Africa.
I know you’re familiar with the Russian literature and have an interest in human migration theories, so are you able to tell me whats supposed to be so odd about the Tutkaul people?
I can give you the source she cited.
Kiyatkina, T.P., Ranov, V.A., 1971. Perviy Antropologickie Naxodki Kamennogo veka Tadjikictan (neoliticeckhe erepa yz Tutkaula). Voproc Antroplologii (Archives d’Anthropologie) 37, 149–156.
I’ve never seen the Tutkaul skulls but from what I know (my archaeology classes plus the general Russian literature on the “Stone Age in Central Asia”) there’s little mystery there. They are Neolithic in age, Caucasoid in general shape (low orbits, dolichocephalic), relatively undifferentiated but gravitating toward the Mediterranean type (with some similarities to contemporaneous skulls from Iran). They aren’t well preserved, as far as I know, plus two of them are children’s, so I don’t think much more was detected in them. I’ll check your reference when I get to the library and if something interesting, I will write you back.
The lithics were kinda “primitive” (flakes), as far as I remember. The only puzzle is that no arrowheads were found, which is surprising for a culture that, as you rightly pointed out, was a hunter-gatherer one.
i’ve been following your website for a few years. i have a degree in anthropology, and even though i have pursued a career in law, and not academics, i have tried to keep informed about the latest trends and research in anthropology as best i as i could for the 20 years since i graduated.
my interest in school had been the intersection between culture and health. i was never that interested in paleoanthropology older than 40,000 years tbh–but i also have always been keenly interested in primatology and have always believed we can learn more about ourselves from our living relatives, than we can from long dead bone fragments. but i still keep-up on the pre-human news as well.
i find your out-of-america theory fascinating, and i was indoctrinated in the out-of-africa theory and never questioned it. i’m especially interested in the similarities between human behavior and the platyrrhine behavior, and the use of linguistics to ferret out human origins. i think it is ingenious–linguistics is accepted as a tool for ferreting out modern migrations (modern in the sense of post-mesolithic).
i’ve always felt that physically, we share the high degree of neotany seen in most platyrrhines, but few catarines, and none of the apes. i also have always questioned how we could be so physically different from out closest relatives if our homind ancestors were always in close proximity to them, never separated by the usual catalysts for speciation–mountains, seas, and very great geographic distances.
your theory about a very early migration into america by a neaderthal-ish human, followed by a later migration out of america back into the old world, struck me as far more parsimonious than current out of africa, back into africa, recent neanderthal introgression that left its mark in the geographic regions most far from neanderthal territory theory that currently exists.
but recently, i’ve been entertaining the absolute heretical out of america 1 idea–that we did actually spend much of our evolution in the new world, which would explain why we are so different physically and behaviorally from old world primates.
the assumption that because chimps and gorillas are in africa now, thus our common ancestor had to be from africa is not founded on any hard data or even on parallels with our animals. the horse evolved in america after all but had been extinct here for almost 10,000 years, before reintroduced by the spanish.
one thing that has been established in evolutionary studies of many other species is that seas and oceans are no barrier to animal migrations, unlike mountains–perhaps our ancestors rafted to the new world during the shallower seas of the miocene, or perhaps, the common ancestor of humans, chips, gorillas, orangutans–didn’t live in africa but in somewhere in between africa and north america, with speciation occurring as different troops migrated in different directions. we know they did migrate great distances–chimps are quite a ways from orangutans.
but this is not why i write, and i’m sorry to have started with such a long digression. there are two articles i thought might be of interest to you (though you undoubtedly are already aware of them):
Anatole A. Klyosov & Igor L. RozhanskiiRe-Examining the “Out of Africa” Theory and the Origin of Europeoids (Caucasoids) in Light of DNA Genealogy, Advances in Anthropology 2012. Vol.2, No.2, 80-86, Published Online May 2012 in SciRes (http://www.SciRP.org/journal/aa)
This article supports an east west migration into both africa and europe from an eastern common ancestor based on y-dna analysis, and shows that europeans and africans share a common ancestor 160,000 years ago–that did not come from africa.
No Alpha Males, Smithsonian, Sept. 2013
this article discusses the new world monkey–the murquis of brazil–and how we are much more like them behaviorally, than we are like any old world primate. it also describes a phenomenon currently being observed in these purely arboreal primates–as their forests diminish, they are coming down from the trees…and walking, albeit awkwardly, on two legs…
thank you for having the courage to propose a truly innovation theory–it’s hard to be “out there,” and i’m glad you haven’t let the naysayers silence you. i hope you will keep up the website–it is one of my most favorite on the entire web.
Greetings. Congrats on your work, Mr. Dziebel. I’ve been reading your debates that you’ve posted and one point that came up was that not much physical evidence older than 50kya (or whatever time period they think up) has been found to firmly “root” this thesis in a way that would be acceptable to detractors. However, have you ever come across the Hueyatlaco-Valsequillo controversy where a prehistoric kill site in Mexico was dated multiple times to 200-250,000 BP? I recommend reading Christopher Hardaker’s “The First American: The Suppressed Story of the People Who Discovered the New World”. I would also recommend checking this website out (don’t worry, this isn’t spam, I swear!): http://pleistocenecoalition.com/steen-mcintyre/index.html.
Here’s a video titled “Early Man in America!” from YouTube: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=HdA7f0lFd6E
It provides a nice overview of this topic, which Hardaker goes into in more detail.
Also, look up the Xalnene Ash controversy. There’s a possible 1,300,000 year date there.
An exceptionally high percentage of Basque men are Hg R1b, so why don’t the Basques speak an IE language if the R1bs did, in fact, spread IE across Europe?
R1b has two sources in Western Europe: Paleolithic and Bronze Age. Basques’ R1b goes back to the initial settlement of Europe by modern humans. It’s noteworthy that a recent study of Mesolithic aDNA identified R1b in Latvia suggesting that R1b was an ancient European lineage that got depleted by agriculturalists in parts of Europe and then replenished by Indo-Europeans who also carried R1a with them.