What makes humans unique?

Mark Sheskin
Mark Sheskin

Yale University’s Mark Sheskin will answer that question at the 10th annual Darwin Day Dinner, an event which includes cocktail hour, dinner, and science quiz (with prizes), on Saturday evening, Feb. 10, at The Water’s Edge at Giovanni’s in Darien. Among the evening’s sponsors is the Wilton Quaker Meeting.

The cocktail hour begins at 6, with dinner at 7. Information and registration are at darwindayct.org. It is advised to register early, due to increasing price as the event gets closer, and capacity limit.

There are many ideas about what, if anything, might make humans very different from other animals. Possibilities include language, general intelligence, cumulative culture, and large-scale cooperation. Sheskin will discuss how humans compare to other animals in each of these domains.

Sheskin is a researcher and lecturer in cognitive science at Yale University. He is performing research on the evolution of morality. His project subjects include adults, children, and capuchin monkeys. He teaches a popular class on uniqueness of humans.

Darwin Day is an international celebration of science and humanity held around Charles Darwin’s Feb. 12 birthday, celebrating the discoveries and life of the man, and expressing gratitude for the enormous benefits that scientific knowledge, acquired through human curiosity and ingenuity, has contributed to the advancement of humanity. This year marks the 209th anniversary of his birth.