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to think you cannot possibly tell whether cave art was done by girls or boys?

(8 Posts)
ElderberrySyrup Fri 30-Sep-11 09:34:06


Cave art by children - yes very exciting. I can see that you might be able to work out from the size of the fingers that it must have been a child.

But they are claiming (so the article says) to be able to tell whether they were girls or boys. How the f* could you tell that?

WDYT? Research misrepresented by media? Academic pushing dodgy thesis too far? Or are there crucial differences between girls' and boys' fingers that are detectable after thousands of years? (Something in the fingerprints?)

alexpolismum Fri 30-Sep-11 09:44:59

That was very interesting. I'm also curious as to how they can pinpoint the age so precisely. How can they say 5 years old as opposed to for example "between 4 and 6".

My dd is 3 years old and has smaller hands than my ds2, who is not yet 2. Are there extra parts of fingerprints that develop as you get older so they can tell? I mean, we are not trees growing extra rings, so what could it be??

CristinadellaPizza Fri 30-Sep-11 09:48:26

I was wondering the same thing when I heard it on the radio this morning.

pickledsiblings Fri 30-Sep-11 10:17:47

Something to do with the width of the middle three fingers apparently, the age that is. Not sure about the gender.

AMumInScotland Fri 30-Sep-11 10:26:04

There's a better version of the story here

"if we have a clear finger profile, the shape of the top edges of the fingers, we can tell to 80 percent accuracy whether the individual was female or male. This works with both children and adults."

BarbarianMum Fri 30-Sep-11 10:30:11

Very interesting AMum, thanks.

I heard the article on the radio this morning and wondered about the girl/boy thing too.

ElderberrySyrup Fri 30-Sep-11 10:31:09

Oh wow.
Thanks AMumInScotland.
That is unbelievably exciting.

CristinadellaPizza Fri 30-Sep-11 10:34:16

Thanks AMum - that's really interesting smile

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