The memoir of Prof Phillip Tobias. Some extracts.

Here are some interesting extracts from “Into the past, a memoir by
Phillip Tobias.

This is a stunning read about his fascinating life, his deep
relationship with his mentor, Raymond Dart, the special friendship
he had with the Leekys. All the fascinating research into the
mesmerising fossils of his time and the massive international
respect he gained during his long and illustrious career. The love
of cricket is there as well.

“Durban High School, was a fine institution with an outstanding
reputation for scholastic and sporting achievements. It was
especially well known in sporting circles for its contribution to
Cricket, a game I’ve always followed with keen interest. Two of
the most famous Cricketers to come out of the school were the
distinguished batsmen, Barry Richards and Lee Ervine, but there
were many others in all departments of the game.

On the side of scholastic accomplishments, there was the great
writer and poet, Roy Cambell, whose “Flaming Carotin” (1924) led to
his immediate recognition as the first “white” South African poet
of international stature.”

“Organisms other than man had the wisdom of the body. Man has in
addition, the wisdom of humanity” Theodocious Dipzanski.

“In the early 1980’s, when the American Museum of Natural History
sent letters to a number of Pallia-Anthropologists who are
custodians of fossil hominoid specimens or collections. To counter
the so-called Creation Science movement in the USA, which had been
disparagingly evidenced on which human evolution was based. The
museum planned to mount a powerful counterpoise. This would take
the form of a display of some of the Worlds most outstanding fossil
hominoid specimens. It was to be an exhibition that differed from
other museum exhibits of hominid fossils, in that original fossils
and not simply casts were to be displayed.

When I received Eric Bellsons letter inviting me to bring the Tong
scull, and one or two other specimens, to the proposed ‘Ancestors”
exhibition, I first had to satisfy my own conscience that it would
be worth the risk.”

“My circuitous route from Wits, via 5 countries to the hominids of
the Serengetti plains of East Africa, was not merely a sight seeing
round of travel, it was an odyssey of changing directions.
Dictated by a huge disruption of purpose, and a replacement of one
goal with another. It was this historic insidious expedition that
was to set the path for much of what happens to me in the next 50

“My schooling at St Andrews in Bloemfontein, and at Durban High
School, gave me little awareness of human evolution. There was no
inkling that here, in South Africa, scarcely 15 years earlier, the
critical discovery of the Tong child scull had been made and was to
begin writing Africa’s irresistible chapters on the evolutionary
origins of humanity.”

“It was beyond belief that the country had given the World the Tong
scull (1924 to 25)and the first adult specimens from Sterkfontein
(1936) and Krondyke (1938) all ready widely accepted as the
Creators intermediate between human beings and apes.”

Blogger Barry: Thanks for your time. Hope you enjoyed. Please
use the comment and follow buttons.

Barry Blomkamp Nd. Bsc (UL)
Professional Public Speaker, Trainer and Corporate Entertainer,
Motivational speaker, Guest & Key note speaker, Seminar &
Conference speaker, Team Builder, Comedian, Master of Ceremonies,

For your Strategic Planning sessions, Management or Sales meetings,
Conferences and/or Seminars, Award functions, Year end parties,
Christmas parties,

Cape Town, South Africa.

Leave a comment...

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s