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The Ivy is delighted to welcome David Linden for a conversation and reading from his new book, Unique: The Science of Human Individuality. David will be in conversation with the wonderful Marion Winik. This event will take place on Zoom.
Inspired by the abundance of unique personalities available on dating websites, a renowned neuroscientist examines the science of what makes you, you. David J. Linden has devoted his career to understanding the biology common to all humans. But a few years ago he found himself on OkCupid. Looking through that vast catalog of human diversity, he got to wondering: What makes us all so different? Unique is the riveting answer. Exploring everything from the roots of sexuality, gender, and intelligence to whether we like bitter beer, Linden shows how our individuality results not from a competition of nature versus nurture, but rather from a mélange of genes continually responding to our experiences in the world, beginning in the womb. And he shows why individuality matters, as it is our differences that enable us to live together in groups. Told with Linden's unusual combination of authority and openness, seriousness of purpose and wit, Unique is the story of how the factors that make us all human can change and interact to make each of us a singular person.
David J. Linden, Ph.D., is a Professor in the Department of Neuroscience at the Johns Hopkins University School of Medicine. His laboratory has worked for many years on the cellular basis of memory storage, recovery of function after brain injury and a few other topics. He has a longstanding interest in scientific communication and served for many years as the Chief Editor of the Journal of Neurophysiology. He is the author of three bestselling books on the biology of behavior for a general audience, The Accidental Mind (2007), The Compass of Pleasure (2011), and Touch: The Science of Hand, Heart and Mind (2015) which, to date, have been translated into 19 languages. Most recently, he edited a collection of short essays on brain function written for a general audience: Think Tank: Forty Neuroscientists Explore the Biological Roots of Human Experience (2018). His has appeared on the TED Radio Hour, Fresh Air with Terry Gross and many other media outlets. His next book, Unique: The Science of Human Individuality will be published by Basic books on September 29, 2020. He lives in Baltimore, Maryland.
University of Baltimore professor Marion Winik is the author of The Big Book of the Dead and winner of the 2019 Towson Prize for Literature. Among her nine other books are First Comes Love and Highs in the Low Fifties. Her award-winning Bohemian Rhapsody column appears monthly at Baltimore Fishbowl, and her essays have been published in The New York Times Magazine, The Sun, and elsewhere. A board member of the National Book Critics Circle, she writes book reviews for People, Newsday, The Washington Post, and Kirkus Reviews; she hosts The Weekly Reader podcast at WYPR. She was a commentator on NPR for fifteen years; her honors include an NEA Fellowship in Creative Nonfiction. More info at marionwinik.com.
TIME & DATE
Sunday, October 11, 2020 - 6:30pm