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interdisciplinary Evolutionary Studies Network

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Professors, one per department

Christina Campbell*, Anthropology
Adam Gifford*, Economics
Sharon Klein, English/Lingistics
Abraham Rutchick, Psychology
Weimin Sun*, Philosophy
Paul Wilson*, Biology
Deone Zell*, Managment

* this year's steering group




Moodle site for in-crowd

The Evolution Report



sexually dimorphic beetles (Darwin 1871)

Evolution-for-All Talk

"Are We Smart Enough to Know How Smart Animals Are?"
Dr. Frans de Waal, Department of Psychology, Emory University, author of The Bonobo and the Atheist: In Search of Humanism among the Primates; The Age of Empathy: Nature's Lessons for a Kinder Society; and many books on primatology.
12:30-1:30 Thursday 10 March 2016 Campus Theater (Nordhoff Hall 100). Host: C. Campbell

Spring 2015—PHIL 225 Evolutionary Reasoning

PHIL 225 Evolutionary Reasoning fulfills the GE Critical Thinking requirement. This class is co-taught by a philosophy professor and a biology professor with many guest lectures. After each lecture, we dissect the arguments. Topics illustrate the long arm of evolutionary processes into science, business, computer science, linguistics, psychology, the humanities, and popular culture. Evolutionary reasoning has become an indispensable part of reasoning in general.

With basic logic tools wedged in between, the course shall be scheduled as a cycle of three activities: discussing a reading in preparation for guest lecturers; hosting the guests; and then in the next session critiquing what the guests said. Likely topics include...

We welcome all majors and the only pre-requisite is completion of GE Analytical Reading/Expository Writing. PHIL 225 shall meet TuTh 9:30-10:45. Seats are limited, so sign up as soon as possible.

Evolution-for-All talks, past

"New Phylogenetic Approaches to Biodiversity Assessment and Conservation"
Dr. Brent Mishler, UC Berkeley.
6 May 2015. Host: P. Wilson

"The Evolution of Fragility" 15th Annual Keith Morton Memorial Lecture
Dr. Normal Yoffee, Emeritus Professor of Anthropology and Near Eastern Studies, University of Michigan and now Adjunct Professor of Anthropology, University of Nevada, Las Vegas and Senior Fellow, Institute for the Study of the Ancient World, NYU
March 2013. Host: C. Costin

"Sex on Six Legs" (audio starts at 5:25)
Dr. Marlene Zuk, University of Minnesota. Author of Sex on Six Legs: Lessons on Life, Love and Language from the Insect World; Riddled with Life: Friendly Worms, Ladybug Sex, and the Parasites That Make Us Who We Are; Sexual Selections: what we can and can’t learn about sex from animals.
Feb 2013. Host: D. Gray

"Evolution of Gender and Sexuality"
Dr. Joan Roughgarden, Stanford University. Author of The genial gene: Deconstructing Darwinian selfishness; Evolution and Christan faith: Reflections of an evolutionary biologist; Evolution's rainbow: Diversity, gender, and sexuality in nature and people; among other books.
May 2012. Host: A. Metzenberg

"The Classification of Organisms, Chemicals, and Artifacts"
Dr. Michael Ghiselin, California Academy of Sciences, San Francisco
Feb 2012. Host: A. Gifford

"It's not all sex and violence: Human aggression and peacemaking in an evolutionary context"
Dr. Agustin Fuentes, Department of Anthropology, University of Notre Dame
November 2011. Host: C. Campbell

"Three ideas about human brain evolution"
Dr. John S. Allen, University of Southern California
February 2011. Host: Sigma Xi

"Macroevolution for plant reproductive biologists"
Dr. Paul Wilson, Biology, CSUN
November 2010. Host: F. Hertel

"Evolving the city: Using evolution to understand and improve the human condition"
Dr. David Sloan Wilson, Binghamton University.
April 2010. Host: J. Stinner

"Developmental systems theory: Finding room for genes and environments in human evolution"
David Moore, Pitzer College
April 2009. Host: C. Campbell

"Evolution before Darwin"
Dr. Ned Friedman, University of Colorado
September 2009. Host: P. Wilson


Darwin Week at CSUN, February 9 - 13, 2009

Darwin Week Poster

Charles Robert Darwin (1809 - 1882)

Charles Darwin was one of science’s most inspired thinkers. The greatness of his contributions cannot be understated. His insights into the mechanisms of evolution serve as the foundation for all of 21st century biology, as well as many other fields of study such as psychology, biochemistry, epidemiology, paleontology, anthropology, sociology, philosophy. In addition, his ideas and discoveries strongly influenced the development of statistical methods of data analysis that are now in widespread use in the sciences, economics, and politics. In other words, the effects of Darwin’s work were multidisciplinary as well as far-reaching and long lasting.

The Bicentennial Celebration

Darwin was born on February 12,1809 and therefore this year is the bicentennial of his birth. This year also marks the 150th anniversary of the publication of his great book, The Origin of Species. CSUN commemorated Darwin's contributions to our understanding of the world with a full week of events:

All Week:





Thursday Feb. 12 (Charles Darwin's 200th Birthday)