The Origins of Genus Homo

The Leakey Foundation, Chicago Council on Science and Technology and Chicago Public Library present:

The Origins of the Genus Homo.

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.

Bernard Wood, Ph.D. 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.

This program presented in partnership with The Leakey Foundation and the Chicago Public Library.

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