Utah Humanities Book Festival - Daniel Lieberman

Thursday, October 3, 2013 - 7:00pm
Natural History Museum of Utah at the Rio Tinto Center

Advance reservations for this event are NOW FULL.

The King's English Bookshop, the Utah Humanities Council, and the Natural History Museum of Utah are pleased to present acclaimed author and barefoot runner Daniel Lieberman at a free community discussion of his new book, The Story of the Human Body: Evolution, Health, and Disease

This discussion will be held in the Museum's Swaner Forum as part of the 2013 Utah Humanities Book Festival.

The Story of the Human Body is noted as a landmark book of popular science.  Lieberman -- chair of the department of human evolutionary biology at Harvard University -- provides a lucid and engaging account of how the human body evolved over millions of years. 

At the same time, the book and discussion will show how the increasing disparity between the jumble of adaptations in our Stone Age bodies and advancements in the modern world is occasioning this paradox: greater longevity but increased chronic disease.

Seating for this event is limited. Advanced reservations required. 



This event is presented in partnership with:



More About Daniel Lieberman

Daniel Lieberman is professor of human evolutionary biology and the Edwin M. Lerner II Professor of Biological Sciences at Harvard. He has written more than one hundred articles, many appearing in the journals Nature and Science. Lieberman is especially well known for his research on the evolution of the human head and the evolution of running, including barefoot running (earning him the nickname the Barefoot Professor). His research and discoveries have been highlighted widely in newspapers, magazines, books, news programs, and documentaries.

More About The Story of the Human Body

The Story of the Human Body brilliantly illuminates as never before the major transformations that contributed key adaptations to the body: the rise of bipedalism; the shift to a non-fruit-based diet; the advent of hunting and gathering, leading to our superlative endurance athleticism; the development of a very large brain; and the incipience of cultural proficiencies. Lieberman also elucidates how cultural evolution differs from biological evolution, and how our bodies were further transformed during the Agricultural and Industrial Revolutions.

While these ongoing changes have brought about many benefits, they have also created conditions to which our bodies are not entirely adapted, Lieberman argues, resulting in the growing incidence of obesity and new but avoidable diseases, such as type 2 diabetes. Lieberman proposes that many of these chronic illnesses persist and in some cases are intensifying because of “dysevolution,” a pernicious dynamic whereby only the symptoms rather than the causes of these maladies are treated. And finally—provocatively—he advocates the use of evolutionary information to help nudge, push, and sometimes even compel us to create a more salubrious environment.