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Is the Human Mind Unique? (live conference webcast Friday)


Join the live webcast of “Is the Human Mind Unique?” a free public symposium hosted by the University of California, San Diego/Salk Institute for Biological Studies Center for Academic Research & Training in Anthropogeny (CARTA)
Friday, February 15th (1:00 – 5:30 pm Pacific Time)
co-chaired by V.S. Ramachandran (University of California, San Diego) and Terry Deacon (University of California, Berkeley)
De Hoffmann Auditorium
Salk Institute for Biological Studies
Viewers will need to be logged into their user account to gain access.

Scientists from many different fields will discuss cognitive abilities often regarded as unique to humans including humor, morality, symbolism, creativity, and preoccupation with the minds of others. Emphasis will be placed on the functional uniqueness of these attributes, as opposed to the anatomical uniqueness, and whether these attributes are indeed quantitatively or qualitatively unique to humans.

Speaker bios and talk abstracts are available for download here:

Symbolic Communication: Why is Human Thought so Flexible? Terry Deacon
Desperately Seeking Explanation Daniel Povinelli
An Evolved and Creative Mind Steven Mithen
Humor Daniel Dennett
Archaeological Evidence for Mind Colin Renfrew
Entering the ‘Soul Niche’ Nicholas Humphrey
Skilled Performance and Artistry Merlin Donald
Moral Sense Patricia Churchland
Inter-Modular Interactions, Metaphor, and the ‘Great Leap’ V.S. Ramachandran

Post webcast note:

The videos of the talks delivered at this symposium will be broadcast on UCSD-TV in April and May, 2013.  After these presentations are aired, they will be archived on the CARTA webpage, as well as UCSD-TViTunes, and YouTube.


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2 Responses

  1. Thank you for sharing this webcast! I am using multiple quotes from the speakers Colin Renfrew and Steven Mithen in my college term paper. Do you know of any other presentations by the same speakers that I can watch?

    Jason VaughnApril 11, 2013 @ 12:33 amReply
    • I’m not aware of any by Renfrew or Mithen, but here’s one from 2009 on the Long Now Foundation site that you may find helpful.
      The Archeology of Innovation, by Sander van der Leeuw. The audio is free, video requires membership.
      I’ve been interested in The Long Now Foundation for a long time now (no pun intended). At their suggestion, I sometimes add a leading zero to the year in my dates (e.g., the current year is 02013).

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