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Are Chimpanzees Good Models for Human Ancestors?

Can we know our past by looking at our present relatives? In chapter 5 and throughout these virtual explorations you have learned quite a lot about our closest relatives, the chimpanzees. Can combining our understandings of phylogeny and evolutionary patterns (chapters 3 and 4) with genetics (chapter 2) allow us to see some aspects of human evolution in chimpanzees? In this Exploration, review your text and previous explorations and interactivities. Then answer the following questions.

What are primitive traits in the primates and humans? Do humans and chimpanzees have any shared derived traits? (Chapter 3)
What are the most important differences between the apes and other primates?
If chimps use tools, then what does this tell us about humans?
Chimps are very aggressive. Are humans? Is aggression in chimps the same as war in humans?
Chimps and humans are different in many ways. Given what we know about adaptation and evolutionary change (see chapter 4), different evolutionary histories of humans and chimps have produced very different current forms. What does this imply about comparisons between human and chimp behavior?
Given all of these considerations, are chimpanzees a good model, the best model, or not a good model for human behavior? Why?

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