Here’s a couple articles on the interwebs the last week or so that are fake-archaeology (farkaeology?)
This one was being passed around the webs by the Ancient-Origins pseudoarchaeology page.
AO and their pseudoarchaeology concierge for Facebook, Chris Aguilar, are spreading visual misinformation with the image of a work of modern art. Created by an artist named Kimball for an exhibition in Mexico City called “Batman Through Mexican Creativity” (“Batman a Través de la Creatividad Mexicana”). This was for the 75th anniversary of Batman in 2014.
As per AO and Aguilar’s normal method of operation, they injected a little fact then a bunch of nonsense. The ancient Maya did, in fact, have a bat-deity. But AO went on to describe giant bats of the Pleistocene, bat-like demons, and Dracula. All as a means to sell mystery to those eager to buy it.
Made up Maternal Mention
This one isn’t necessarily archaeology, but since DNA is becoming more and more common as a tool in archaeological research I thought I’d include it. Also, it’s a very good example of how rash copyeditors for clickbait sites work.
Bright Side wanted us all to believe that Children Get Most of Their Genes From Their Maternal Grandmother. Well, they probably actually gave two-peas in a bucket about what we all believe or don’t believe as long as we clicked the link. Don’t worry, you can click the link since it sends you to an archive of their page–not the page itself.
The original article (they’ve since pulled it) stated: “the genes that children receive in their mothers’ wombs come directly from their grandmothers.”
Of course this is just nonsense since we all get 23 chromosomes from each parent, 50% from mom, 50% from dad. From each grandparent, we inherit 25% of their DNA, but it is quite indirect. The original article also had some nonsense about how genes can “skip a generation.” I suspect the article was thrown together by someone who gave a quick read to the actual study they wanted to interpret (which they badly did) and that person didn’t have a basic understanding of genetics. Or science.
The actual study (given a small, unobtrusive link) was titled, Grandma plays favourites: X-chromosome relatedness and sex-specific childhood mortality. The authors conclude, “elderly women are able to contribute to their grandchildren’s survivorship through nutritional provisioning, which would increase a woman’s inclusive fitness because she shares one-quarter of her genes with a grandchild.”