Past Events

Fixing the Pathological Body

April 22, 2015
The medical industry leans heavily upon a distinction between the “normal” and the “pathological.” How and why do we continue to define this distinction, and for whom are these categories useful? Featuring Janette Dinishak (Asst Prof of Philosophy, UCSC), Kelly Ormond (Prof of Genetics, Stanford U.), and Matthew Wolf-Meyer (Assoc. Prof. of Anthropology, UCSC). Continue Reading Fixing the Pathological Body

Working Against Female Genital Mutilation in Khartoum, Sudan

Dr. Atif Fazari, Professor of Obstetrics and Gynecology at University of Medical Sciences & Technology, Khartoum- Sudan, will discuss his work as a reconstructive surgeon and opponent of Female Genital Mutilation. He spoke about various strategies for reducing this practice, and discussed these with Dr. Carolyn Martin-Shaw (Emerita Anthropology Professor, UCSC ). Continue Reading Working Against Female Genital Mutilation in Khartoum, Sudan

The H+ Film Festival: Cyborg Fictions and Futures

How does our popular culture shape our visions of that future, and what ethical questions should we consider today rather than in a transhuman tomorrow? This film festival presents science fiction classics: RoboCop (1987), Ghost in the Shell (1995) and documentary Transcendent Man (2009) followed by panel discussion with Ed Neumeier (cowriter of RoboCop, UCSC alum), Dr. Vivienne Ming (UC Berkeley), and Dr. Chris Gray (UCSC, author of “Cyborg Citizen”). Continue Reading The H+ Film Festival: Cyborg Fictions and Futures

Science Journalism: Education, Entertainment or Instigation?

How much can you educate someone about DNA tests or climate change in three and a half minutes? Is “education” even the goal? NPR science journalist Joe Palca discusses what he hopes to accomplish in his science segments for public radio, as well as the reporting and production effort behind them. Join him in a conversation with Science and Justice Professor and fellow journalist Sally Lehrman about the role of science news in society, including the interplay of scientists and audience in its expression. Continue Reading Science Journalism: Education, Entertainment or Instigation?

Plant Intelligence or Plant Signaling?

In recent years, plant scientists have been increasingly interested in complex forms of plant behavior, including the ways in which plants communicate with each other by long distance electrical signals and chemicals. The capacity of plants to anticipate, remember, and learn is referred to as the concept of “plant intelligence” and studied in the emerging field of ‘plant neurobiology.’ For some researchers, ‘neurobiology’ is a potentially distracting anthropomorphism which diverts attention from the actual capacities of plants which they see as utterly different from human conceptions of intelligence. Elizabeth van Volkenburgh presents her research on plant growth and adaptations to stress, followed by a conversation with Anthropologist Natasha Myers around what is gained or lost by seeing plant communication as a form of intelligence. Continue Reading Plant Intelligence or Plant Signaling?

Is Bamboo the Next Green Gold?

One of the fastest growing plants in the world; bamboo has emerged as a silver bullet for sustainable design and architecture. However, bamboo also has long been used in artisanal construction in Asia and South America, where it is part of important ecological and cultural systems. Can bamboo satisfy all its lovers or – like sugarcane for ethanol – will it become the next green gold? Darrel DeBoer, Jennifer M. Jacobs and Rudolf von May will examine this significant problem, while focusing on tropical bamboo as an emerging case study. Continue Reading Is Bamboo the Next Green Gold?