Lefties have taken a lot of shit over thousands of years right up to the modern day, whether they’ve been accused of witchcraft, or just simply frowned upon in many cultures.
But a simple question has remained unanswered for a long time – why is our civilisation mostly right-handed? Well scientists think they now know why…
This question has baffled scientists for generations having traced the righty dominance back at least 600,000 years.
Many believed it ran in our families and was simply genetic, but several studies showed that only 25 per cent of handedness can be explained by inheritance, with three quarters being born to right-handed parents. So it’s a lot more complex than first thought.
Scientists have now concluded that there are multiple genes involved in the expression of handedness, some of which are responsible for the body’s asymmetry.
In the majority of people, the left hemisphere of our bodies is responsible for language and is also in control of the right-hand side of the body, with many scientists now believing there’s a link between the two.
However, this link is up for debate, with some experts believing our two hemispheres gave our ancestors an evolutionary advantage, while others believe the preference for using your right hand developed as a side effect to the left hemipshere evolving to process language.
Researchers at Northwestern University in the US believe that cooperation is the underlying influence to same handedness among societies. If cooperation is highly valued, many will agree to do the same thing and as humans are surprisingly rather co-operative we have a right-handed majority.
So like redheads, why are lefties not destined to become a thing of the past? Oh, it’s because we don’t get on as much as we thought we did. Confused? So are we… According to researchers, competition in society has meant lefties have an advantage for being ‘unusual’ in a number of sports and encourages a small proportion of left-handers.
Who’d have thought that? Without sport, lefties could be extinct…