This program is over.
Hope you didn't miss it! Use the links in the left-hand column to find upcoming programs.
What's so special about Homo sapiens anyway? About 70,000 years ago, the species had no more impact on the planet than any other living creature. But somehow humans eventually emerged as the masters of the universe. In his best-selling first book, Sapiens: A Brief History of Mankind, Yuval Noah Harari, a history professor at Hebrew University of Jerusalem, described several distinctly human traits that gave us the ultimate edge, among them an ability to cooperate flexibly and, more important, to live both in an objective reality and a fictional one designed by our imaginations. It is the former that allowed for concepts--such as money, political and religious systems, as well as science and capitalism--to become realities when humans, in great enough numbers, bought into them.
Harari looks back at the course of history, and, drawing on his new book, Homo Deus: A Brief History of Tomorrow (Harper Collins), he explores the human agenda informing the 21st century—from overcoming death to creating artificial life. He also asks the fundamental questions: Where do we go from here? And how will we protect this fragile world from our destructive powers?
Homo Deus is available for signing.
S. Dillon Ripley Center
1100 Jefferson Dr SW
Metro: Smithsonian (Mall exit)