Dan Lieberman and Evan Hadingham discuss the thrilling stories behind some of the most important human origins discoveries ever made.
San Francisco, CA
May 3, 2016 @ 7:00 pm - 8:00 pm$15
What We Do (and Don't) Know About Our Newest Extinct Relative
Join Dr. William Harcourt-Smith as he explores Homo naledi, the early human relative recently discovered deep within Rising Star cave in South Africa. This find, consisting of over 1500 fossil fragments, is arguably one of the most significant fossil discoveries of the last half-century, and Harcourt-Smith led one of the first teams to examine the fossils. In this talk he will discuss what makes Homo naledi so unique, where it may fit within the human lineage and what consequences this ground-breaking discovery may have for our current understanding of human evolution.
William Harcourt-Smith is assistant professor of anthropology at Lehman College and the Graduate Center at CUNY, Research Associate in the Division of Paleontology at the American Museum of Natural History, and co-directs the Early Miocene field site of Rusinga in Western Kenya. In 2012 he received a Leakey Foundation Research Grant for his work excavating hominid footprints from Ngare Sero in Tanzania. His research interests include the origins of hominid bipedalism, paleoecology, hominoid evolution, primate cranial evolution and geometric morphometric techniques. Most recently he lead the team that examined the foot bones of Homo naledi.