The Hand: How Its Use Shapes the Brain, Language, and Human Culture Test | Mid-Book Test - Hard

Frank R. Wilson
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This test consists of 5 short answer questions, 10 short essay questions, and 1 (of 3) essay topics.

Short Answer Questions

1. According to Charles Sherrington, what is a natural progression?

2. What is one thing that shoulder and forearm development enabled?

3. According to Wilson, what did the expansion of territory by hominids require?

4. Who is Sir Charles Bell?

5. What sport does David participate in during High School?

Short Essay Questions

1. Explain the studies that are conducted by a joint effort of University of New Mexico and Gallaudet University?

2. What does William Calvin believe about female apes?

3. How does Seymour Sarason believe education can succeed?

4. What did Herophilus and Galen discover?

5. Why does Wilson bring up his friend Jack Schaefer?

6. What does Kieran Egan write in The Educated Mind?

7. Describe Peter Reynolds work.

8. What does Wilson say about juggling as a pastime?

9. Explain the term "BackTur."

10. What are Wilson's conclusions about musical talent or heuristic?

Essay Topics

Write an essay for ONE of the following topics:

Essay Topic 1

Donald assumes speech is a primary enabler and the outcome of evolution in 1) cognitive capacity as representational or mimetic, 2) articulating speech, and 3) neural structure. Donald summarizes his ideas with the claim that humans did not simply grow larger brains, memories and speaking equipment but rather incorporated new ways to represent reality in their bigger brains.

1. Why would Donald call speech a primary enabler of evolution? Use examples from the text to support your answer.

2. What do you think Donald means by cognitive capacity as representational or mimetic? cognitive capacity as representational or mimetic

3. Why would the ability to remember the past be important to hominids' survival?

Essay Topic 2

Anatomically, ape and human hands have been, until recently, considered functionally equivalent by anthropologists. The prehuman arm, however, was considered functionally and anatomically different metaphorically by analysis to a construction crane and its operator.

1. Explain the metaphor of the prehuman being related to a crane. Use examples from the text to support your answer.

2. Explain what part of the body is the crane operator in the above metaphor and how it relates to the use of the hand. Use examples from the text to support your answer.

3. Discuss the following statement in relation to modern human society. When the forelimbs were relieved of the duty to walk on and support body weight, the brain enabled them to become functional in many other areas and skills. Use examples from the text to support your answer.

Essay Topic 3

Often, authors will write about "what they know," and sometimes knowing a little about the author makes the books more interesting. Discuss the following:

1. Research and give a brief biographical sketch of Frank R. Wilson.

2. What in Wilson's background may have helped him in writing The Hand? What may have influenced the way he depicts various characters and scenes?

3. Do you think there is always some of the author's own life in his/her books? Why or why not? Give examples.

(see the answer keys)

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