CLEMSON — John Hawks, an internationally recognized expert on human evolution and genetics who has appeared in documentary films on PBS and National Geographic, will speak at Clemson University about “Fossils, genomes, and our African origins.”
The talk will take place at 3:30 p.m. Friday, Sept. 27, in Freeman Hall Auditorium. It is free and open to the public.
The Vilas-Borghesi Distinguished Achievement Professor of Anthropology at the University of Wisconsin at Madison, Hawks has investigated the rapid evolution of modern humans within the past 40,000 years and he has explored the contribution of ancient Neanderthals to the ancestry of people living today.
In 2013, Hawks was a core member of the international team that discovered the new species Homo naledi from the Rising Star cave system in South Africa. Homo naledi coexisted with the ancestors of modern people.
Hawks has also developed a free, massive open online course called “Human evolution: Past and future,” which followed him around the world as he interviewed experts and visited field sites and original fossil collections. He continues to develop these materials, opening up education in human origins to everyone in the world.
His talk will go to the field and into the genome to examine the newest evidence, which indicates that the roots of modern human populations are older and more diverse than once believed.
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