Only yesterday, the journal Trends in Genetics witnessed the publication of a new study stating that, thanks to the perks of modern life, the human race is losing its brains.
More precisely, because the pressure of being smart in order to cope with potential dangers or find food is pretty much gone, the need to be intelligent is slowly fading away.
According to the specialists who have looked into this issue, the human race first started losing its intelligence thousands of years ago, when dense communities started to appear.
Thus, because the early humans had nobody but themselves to rely on, they needed significant brainpower in order to make head and tail of their surrounding environment and come up with innovative ways of dealing with threats.
On the other hand, the modern human can perform most of his daily tasks without ever having to tap into the brain resources our ancestors relied heavily on.
“A hunter-gatherer who did not correctly conceive a solution to providing food or shelter probably died, along with his/her progeny, whereas a modern Wall Street executive that made a similar conceptual mistake would receive a substantial bonus and be a more attractive mate. Clearly, extreme selection is a thing of the past,” the study reads.
Still, Live Science emphasizes the fact that, as far as other researchers are concerned, the human race is not losing its brains.
Quite the contrary: it is merely developing various other types of intelligence which would have been of no use to our ancestors, but which are very well suited to tackle our modern needs.
“You don't get Stephen Hawking 200,000 years ago. He just doesn't exist. But now we have people of his intellectual capacity doing things and making insights that we would never have achieved in our environment of evolutionary adaptation,” psychologist Thomas Hill from the University of Warwick believes.