To Our Readers: Mar. 14, 1994

In the years before he got into journalism, senior editor Charles Alexander taught science at two high schools in Tennessee. He told his students about early man and the origins of life and touched on the dinosaurs. "And just about everything I taught them," he says, "was wrong."

Alexander has no reason to feel chagrined: every other science teacher in the country was purveying the same fare. The fact that the material has since proved almost totally obsolete helps explain why a recent series of TIME cover stories detailing new findings about ancient civilizations and prehistory has had such an impact....

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