Online ISItA conferences

Since 2021, the Italian Institute of Anthropology has been organizing online conferences annually on topics of interdisciplinary interest aimed at non-specialist audiences. The meetings will be freely available through an online platform, also in the form of video recording.

Under the theme "Dialogues on Cultures, Behavior and Ethics 150 Years After Charles Darwin's The Descent of Man", four online conferences are planned.

Etica ed evoluzionismo: biologia e filosofia del senso morale

Eleonora Severini, Università di Pavia, Dipartimento di Studi Umanistici


11 december 2021, 12:00

link no yet available


Come può essere intesa la relazione tra etica ed evoluzionismo? Si può partire dai problemi connessi a questa relazione e chiedersi perché sia così difficile parlare di etica ed evoluzionismo. Alla base di questa difficoltà sembrano esserci tanto ragioni storiche quanto ragioni teoriche. Per affrontare queste questioni, vengono discusse tre tesi: (1) l’etica e l’evoluzione coincidono; (2) l’etica contrasta l’evoluzione; (3) l’etica è slegata dall’evoluzione. Partendo dalle difficoltà in cui incorrono le tre tesi, viene proposto un modo alternativo di pensare la relazione tra etica ed evoluzione in grado, da un lato, di includere l’ambiente all’interno della visione evoluzionistica di riferimento e, dall’altro lato, di collocare l’etica in una prospettiva ecologica.

Extended Mind and Cognitive Archeology

Emiliano Bruner, Centro Nacional de Investigación sobre la Evolución Humana, Burgos (España)


10 november 2021, 11:15

Video


In recent years, evidence has increased in support of the hypothesis of cognitive extension, proposing that the mental process is not limited to the brain system but also actively involves the body and the environment (especially technology). The evolution of a "prosthetic capacity" that allowed the inclusion of instruments in the body and central nervous system schemes would therefore have been fundamental in human phylogeny. This process can also be analyzed through the archaeological register, using methods and techniques from neuropsychology and cognitive sciences.

Extended Mind and Cognitive Archeology

Emiliano Bruner, Centro Nacional de Investigación sobre la Evolución Humana, Burgos (España)


10 november 2021, 11:15

Video


In recent years, evidence has increased in support of the hypothesis of cognitive extension, proposing that the mental process is not limited to the brain system but also actively involves the body and the environment (especially technology). The evolution of a "prosthetic capacity" that allowed the inclusion of instruments in the body and central nervous system schemes would therefore have been fundamental in human phylogeny. This process can also be analyzed through the archaeological register, using methods and techniques from neuropsychology and cognitive sciences.

Continuist Darwin, non-humans and cultural anthropology

Stefano Allovio, Università di Milano Statale


9 november 2021, 11:15

Video


In "The Descent of Man", Darwin insistently claims the continuist paradigm, emphasizing the reasoning power of non-human animals, going so far as to link the dreams of dogs to the "non-human" possibilities of animism. Contemporary anthropology, increasingly attentive to the relationships between humans and non-humans, would not struggle to superimpose, for example, Darwin's considerations on the mental faculties of dogs with what can be found in refined ethnographies such as that of Eduardo Kohn on the runes of Peru. . Darwin and the Runas (who perhaps he could have defined "low savages") are much more similar than one might imagine: they think about what dogs think and they do it starting from a knowledge that feeds on close interspecific relationships.

Evolution of altruism

Telmo Pievani, Università di Padova


31 may 2021, 17:30

video available at link


The animal world offers us many examples of altruism, even in species that are evolutionarily distant from ours. This spread of altruistic behaviors may seem like a paradox, as natural selection favors traits that allow their carriers to survive and reproduce. How can altruistic behaviors override self-interest?

The Istituto Italiano di Antropologia is a member of

and supported by