February 04, 2022
Osher at CMU Lecture Series presents "Last of Our Kind: The Twilight of the Neanderthals" by Adam Davis
Tuesday, March 1, 2022
Online - Zoom
Zoom Codes will be sent out the day of the Lecture.
Homo sapiens is the only living member of the Homininae, the subfamily of great apes who walk upright and are generally regarded as "human." But less than 100,000 years ago, we shared Earth with at least three other human species. In this lecture, Professor Davis will tell the stories of the Neanderthals, Denisovans, and other recently extinct cousins of modern humans, explore the reasons for their demise, and examine the ways in which their legacy lives on in us. In this way, we can address the questions of what biological and cultural qualities define what it means to be human, and ask the all-important questions of why we are the last living beings of that kind, and what lessons the extinction of other types of humans might offer us today.
Adam Davis is a paleoanthropologist, evolutionary biologist, and historian of science and medicine who specializes in Neanderthals and other close cousins to Homo sapiens. A graduate of Mercyhurst University and the University of Pittsburgh, Adam is a president emeritus and board member of the Southern Association for the History of Medicine and Science, and is currently a professor of biology at Community College of Allegheny County and treasurer of the C.F. Reynolds Medical History Society; he also teaches courses on the history of science for Duquesne University and has offered a variety of classes for the Osher Lifelong Learning Program at both Pitt and CMU. In his spare time, Adam is an avid traveler and gamer, and writes stories for the horror game Dread published by Windmill Game Company. Adam lives in Greenfield with his spouse Stacie, two adorable cats, and far too many books.