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The Origin of Science

The Origin of Science addresses one of the great mysteries of human evolution: How did the human mind evolve the ability to develop science?

The art of tracking may well be the origin of science. Science may have evolved more than a hundred thousand years ago with the evolution of modern hunter-gatherers. Scientific reasoning may therefore be an innate ability of the human mind.

The implication of this theory is that anyone, regardless of their level of education, whether or not they can read or write, regardless of their cultural background, can make a contribution to science.

Kalahari trackers have been employed in modern scientific research using GPS-enabled handheld computers and have co-authored scientific papers.

Tracking scientists have made fundamental contributions to science. From a simple observation of a bird captured on a smart phone through to a potential Einstein, some may be better than others, but everyone can participate in science.

“This is an extraordinary book. Louis Liebenberg, our intrepid and erudite guide, gives us a fascinating view of a people and a way of life that have much to say about who we are, but which soon will vanish forever. His data are precious, his stories are gripping, and his theory is a major insight into the nature and origins of scientific thinking, and thus of what makes us unique as a species.”

Steven Pinker Harvard College Professor of Psychology, Harvard University
Author of How the Mind Works and Rationality


"Louis Liebenberg's argument about the evolution of scientific thinking is highly original and deeply important.”

Daniel E. Lieberman Professor of Human Evolutionary Biology at Harvard University
Author of The Story of the Human Body

"Although many theories of human brain evolution have been offered over the years, Louis Liebenberg's is refreshingly straightforward... While the book challenges traditional ideas about the origin of science, its arguments are in line with current thinking on the evolution of human cognition.”

David Ludden Review in PsycCRITIQUES