[CT Birds] Yale's Richard Prum, "The Evolution of Beauty: From Warblers to Warhol"

Arthur Shippee ashippee at snet.net
Mon Sep 1 00:03:57 EDT 2014

DeVane Lectures to explore 'The Evolution of Beauty'


Why is bird song so variable? Why do some animals perform elaborate courtship rituals? Why do skunks smell so bad? These are among the questions that will be explored during this semester's DeVane Lectures, which will be presented by Yale evolutionary ornithologist Richard O. Prum.

The DeVane Lecture series, this year titled “The Evolution of Beauty: From Warblers to Warhol,” is open to the public and is also offered as a course for credit to Yale undergraduate students. The lecture series was established in 1969 to honor William Clyde DeVane, dean of Yale College from 1939 to 1963.

Prum, the William Robertson Coe Professor of Ornithology, Ecology, and Evolutionary Biology, says in his course description that the series “will broadly explore aesthetics and beauty from the perspective of evolutionary biology, human biology, art, and culture.

The lectures will begin on Thursday, Aug. 28, and will take place on subsequent Thursdays through Nov. 27, at 4 p.m. in Rm. 202 of Osborne Memorial Labs, corner of Prospect and Sachem streets. There are no classes during breaks on Oct. 16, Oct. 23, and Nov. 20.

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