Homo pedanticus

New York Times: Evolution on the Meat-Sex Exchange (28-Aug-03)
…[Author of the dodgy book under review] Dr. Shlain should know that the feminist revolution reached into anthropology more than 30 years ago and no one now doubts that women were big-time players in evolution. To suggest that women should have their own genus name, Gyno sapiens, seems not only dated, but a bit silly

…And classically inconsistent: the Linnean (scientific) classification, Homo sapiens (literally wise/thinking man) takes its root from the Latin word for (hu)man, homo, whereas the root Gyno is from the ancient Greek word for woman. By rights, therefore, Shlain should have concocted his fake Linnean classification for thinking woman using the Latin word for woman, viz Femina sapiens (or maybe even Femina sapienta—my Latin isn't what it used to be).

Alternatively, given it is often claimed that wisdom comes with age, he could have used the Latin word for old woman, but I suppose, if he suggested the name Anus sapiens, people would think he was being a smart-arse.


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