Interdisciplinary Symposium "Does History evolve?"

Interdisciplinary Symposium "Does History evolve?"

Universitiy of Leiden (Netherlands)
Natural History Museum of Leiden
From - Until
09.06.2007 -
Naumann, Katja

If evolution is the theory of the development of life and human history is a collection of arguments, data and constructs, then what on earth would the two have in common? Seemingly, the point of this comparison is just to find out exactly whether or not these ideas fit. Both in their respect are an analysis of space and time, based on empericism and logic.

Besides, Steven Stegers and I were so fascinated by the theory-of-history and global history colleges given by Peer Vries and the "World-Historical Turn" Seminars given by John E. Wills, we decided to organise a conference on Energy and World-History <> last year. This turned out to be such a succes, that we decided to organise another conference, partly inspired by works of Jared Diamond (Guns, Germs and Steel) and Robert Wright (The Logic of Human Destiny), who seek ways to incorporate laws and patters found in biology into cultural and social studies. Most of these biological schemes may be summarised as Evolution Theory. In this symposium we would like to present to the public different perspectives (anthropological, world-historical, cultural, biological, etc.) on how human history might fit clockwork evolutionary laws and mutations. And off course, we would like to offer the public the thrill of interdisciplinary and intellectual debate, mostly left out by the regular - not so global and interdisciplinary - curriculum.

Jonathan Even-Zohar and Steven Stegers


10:00: Welcome with Coffee and Tea

10:15: Introduction in Great Auditorium by Jonathan Even-Zohar and Steven Stegers. Introduction by Dr. Peer Vries

10:30: Lecture 1: David Christian – History since the Chronometric Revolution

11:30 BREAK

11:45 Lecture 2: John de Vos – Human evolution, island faunas and Pleistocene vertebrate paleontology

12:45 BREAK with LUNCH

13:45 Lecture 3: Khaled Hakami– Anthropological faces of evolution and interpreting human history

14:45 BREAK

15:00 Lecture 4: John McNeill – Webs of History: the first 50,000 years

16:00 BREAK

16:15 Lecture 5: Fred Spier – Toward an Explanation of Big History? Energy Flows, Goldilocks Circumstances and the Rise and Demise of Complexity

17:15 Debate and Discussion with moderation and conclusion by Peer Vries

18:00 End of Symposium

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Jonathan Even-Zohar:
Steven Stegers:
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