Humanities meets biology

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HUMA and the Centre of Excellence in Human Development at Wits are co-hosting a one-day symposium intended to open up a conversation about the implications for the humanities and social sciences of important discoveries in epigenetics – specifically, the ways in which new epigenetic knowledge redefines the terms of the old  nature-nurture debate. See full programme.

We have invited a number of scholars from a variety of disciplines and fields of study in the humanities and social sciences to consider if and how this redefinition might – or might not – change the ways in which they think about their own disciplines/ fields of study and more specifically, how they write and research.

The keynote speaker will be Professor Bruce Ellis, Professor of Family Studies and Human Development, John & Doris Norton Endowed Chair in Fathers, Parenting, and Families, University of Arizona, USA. Professor Ellis whose background is in Social Science, Psychology and Developmental Psychopathology has pioneered fundamental contributions to the developmental-evolutionary conceptualisation of human behavioral and psychological development, especially in the context of social adversity and in relation to both health and disease.  He will provide an opening address outlining the fundamental realignments of biological and humanities perspectives on human development within the field of epigenetics.

In addition to the programme, we have also attached a briefing document to which invited speakers will then respond.

This symposium is the second in a two-part series on Evolutionary Approaches To Human Development sponsored by the DST-NRF Centre of Excellence in Human Development (CoE-HD). The first seminar, held at Wits in February 2015, was focused on physical development. This seminar, hosted by HUMA and the CoE-HD, explores human brain/mind development.

It will be held at HUMA, on the 26th of November. All welcome.

Please RSVP for catering purposes.

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