Smashing Agassiz’s Boulder


Sep 27, 2016, 6:00 pm


Northwest Building, Lecture Hall B103, 52 Oxford Street, Cambridge, MA
Joseph L. Graves, Jr.
Joseph L. Graves, Jr.

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Race, Representation, and Museums Series Lecture

Joseph L. Graves, Jr., Associate Dean for Research and Professor of Biological Sciences, Joint School of Nanoscience and Nanoengineering, North Carolina A&T State University and the University of North Carolina at Greensboro

In the late nineteenth century, Charles Darwin proposed that all humans share a common ancestor and that evolution likely began in Africa. He expected controversy over his revolutionary idea, even suggesting that Harvard professor Louis Agassiz might “throw a boulder” at him. Today, 157 years after On the Origin of Species was published, evolutionary biology has “smashed” Agassiz’s boulder and confirmed that modern humans can all trace their ancestry to Africa. Joseph Graves will discuss accepted scientific facts on human ancestry and consider why these facts are difficult to communicate in our society.

Presented in collaboration with the Departments of Anthropology and Human Evolutionary Biology, Harvard University and the Project on Race & Gender in Science & Medicine at the Hutchins Center for African & African American Research, Harvard University, and Harvard Museum of Natural History

Free lecture and open to the public.  Free event parking available at the 52 Oxford Street Garage.

See all Race, Representation, and Museums lectures

Peabody Museum of Archaeology & Ethnology Department of Anthropology Department of Human Evolutionary Biology Hutchins Center Harvard Museum of Natural History