Lewontin Claims We Know Nothing About Brain Evolution

Episode 30 of the Brain Science Podcast was devoted to the subject of language evolution.  In that episode, I mentioned Steven Jay Gould's claim that language was a spandrel, an incidental by-product of evolution.  Gould's co-author on his famous 1970's paper about spandrels was Richard Lewontin, who is well-known for disagreeing with prevailing opinions in evolution.  At the recent annual meeting of the American Association for the Advancement of Science, he reportedly gave a talk that discounted all the current theories about brain evolution.

I have not read the transcript of his lecture, but I just finished reading Georg Striedter's comprehensive textbook, Principles of Brain Evolution  (2005).  This text is highly regarded by leaders in neuroscience research like Michael S Gazzaniga.  It does an excellent job of describing both the challenges and progress in the field, as well as exploring the pros and cons of alternative theories.  I can't help wondering what Lewontin's comments contribute to the field.  Of course, it is reasonable to point out how limited our knowledge is, but to  dismiss the work of so many scientists seems rather arrogant. If anyone has access to the transcript I would like to read it.