Not TOO long ago, I made my first ever podcast of sorts, about how early (but biologically modern) humans mingled with other hominids. The other hominids ended up dying off, but here we are.
Seed magazine (linked to on the right of weeklyrob’s main page) this month has printed a conversation between a couple of guys who touch on the subject. They both believe that legends of The Other, like bigfoot, elves, goblins, etc., all come from our collective human experience with those other hominids.
It’s an interesting idea, but when I think much about it… well, it sounds like hogwash to me. I think it’s easy enough for a superstitiously inclined human to imagine intelligent beings just based on noises in the night and weird shadows in the forest. You don’t need to collectively “remember” actual Other Beings. Anyway, I think those other hominids weren’t other enough to be bogeymen. And bogeywomen. Don’t forget about bogeywomen.
But who knows.
[Incidentally, the same article quotes one of the guys as calling James Joyce an “expatriot” rather than “expatriate.” Expatriate comes from ex (out, or forth) and patria (home country). Not, of course, from ex (former) and patriot (lover of his country, or fellow countryman).]
I want to say part of the plot of Arthur C. Clarke’s Childhood’s End was about how we were visited by aliens with horns and tails and such during the time of primitive humankind, and when they come back later we realize that that’s where our devil myth came from.
But I could be mixing that up with another Sci-Fi tale from my youth.
Ooh, I hope that’s true. Not that Clarke wrote it, but that’s it’s actually true!