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The Origins of the Genus Homo

Speaker(s): Bernard Wood

Chicago, IL

May 23, 2018 @ 6:30 pm - 7:30 pm


KNM-FR181 © Fred Spoor

When did our ancestors look the way we expect the earliest members of our genus to have looked? When did they behave in the way we expect the earliest members of our genus to have behaved? The search for what defines the genus Homo has spanned decades and is still debated among scientists today. In this talk, paleoanthropologist Dr. Bernard Wood will survey the history of attempts to find the earliest members of the genus Homo, including very recent and controversial additions. He will review the complications that arise from defining the genus and discuss how half-a-century of paleontological research has taught him what to look for within the hominin fossil record when searching for the origins of our genus Homo.

This event is free to attend, no registration is necessary.

Doors open at 6:00 pm for a book signing of Dr. Bernard Wood’s book Human Evolution: A Very Short Introduction.

Presented in partnership with the Chicago Council on Science and Technology and The Chicago Public Library, Harold Washington Center.

Sponsored by:
Camilla and George Smith
Ann and Gordon Getty


May 23, 2018
6:30 pm - 7:30 pm
Event Category:


The Leakey Foundation


Cindy Pritzker Auditorium in the Harold Washington Center of the Chicago Public Library
400 South State Street
Chicago, IL 60605 United States
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Bernard Wood

Bernard Wood is University Professor of Human Origins and the director of the Center for the Advanced Study of Human Paleobiology at George Washington University. His research interests are taxonomy, phylogeny reconstruction and comparative morphology. He is the author or co-author of 12 books that range from a 1991 monograph on the hominid cranial remains from Koobi Fora to the non-technical Human Evolution, A Very Short Introduction. He is the author of over 220 scientific articles and book chapters as well as numerous commentaries in Nature and other journals. He is an honorary fellow of the Royal College of Surgeons of England.

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Comments 4

4 responses to “The Origins of the Genus Homo”

  1. Paige Heiden says:

    Where will this lecture be held? Thank you!

    • Arielle says:

      Hi Paige,

      The lecture will be held at the Harold Washington Center of the Chicago Public Library. We just added the venue location to our event page and the address can be found there. Hope to see you at our lecture!

  2. Alan Stico says:

    Would be nice if you could web cast such presentations for those of us not near Chicago.

    • Meredith Johnson says:

      Hi Alan, thanks for your comment. There will be a video of the presentation very soon and we will post it here and on our YouTube channel. It was filmed by CAN TV and it should be available in the next week or so.

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