Public Release: 

The Origin, Evolution, and Future of Life on Earth

Featuring Christian de Duve, 1974 Nobel Prize winner in medicine

Philoctetes Center for the Multidisciplinary Study of Imagination

A roundtable discussion
Thursday, December 8, 2005 at 7:30pm
in the Philoctetes Center and Auditorium of The New York Psychoanalytic Institute
247 East 82nd Street, New York, NY 10028

How did life begin? What were its earliest forms? Where did it originate? Was it chance or inevitable? Is a biochemical understanding sufficient to explain creation? How did early molecules evolve into today's humans? What can be said about the development of the mind? What of the phenomenon of consciousness? Can culture, civilization, and technology influence evolution in the future, or will Darwinian rules alone prevail? What dangers lie ahead?

These and other like questions will be examined in this roundtable whose participants come from a wide variety of disciplines: biochemistry, paleontology, philosophy, science and religion. Five prominent scholars discuss these important questions about the past and the future of life on earth.

Participants:

Christian de Duve, 1974 Nobel Prize winner in medicine; author of Singularities (Publication date: September 2005

Colin McGinn, Philosopher (consciousness, intentionality, imagination), author, The Character of Mind; Problems in Philosophy: The Limits of Inquiry

Mark Norell, Curator & Chairman of Paleontology, American Museum of Natural History

Robert Pollack, Professor of Biological Sciences and Director of Columbia University's Center for the Study of Science and Religion

James P. Ferris, Director, New York Center for Studies of the Origin of Life, Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute

This program will take place in the Philoctetes Center, and broadcast through closed circuit television to additional seating in the Auditorium. The event is free and open to the public. Seating is limited on a first come basis.

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The mission of the Philoctetes Center is to foster the study of imagination -- funding research, organizing roundtable discussions, offering courses and lecture programs. The Center is also developing a web-based clearing house on work related to the imagination.

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