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Steven Pinker: The Past, Present and Future of Violence

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If you have a question about this talk, please contact Livia Holm.

Renowned experimental psychologist, cognitive scientist, linguist, and popular science author Steven Pinker (Harvard University) will address the widely-held impression that we are living in extraordinarily violent times, when in fact rates of violence at all scales have been in decline over the course of history. The lecture will discuss how human nature comprises faculties that encourage violence, such as dominance and revenge, but also faculties that inhibit it, such as self-control, empathy and reason. Pinker also speculates on how some of the historical processes that reduced violence in the past might help to further reduce violence in the future.

The Canadian-born US academic has been named Humanist of the Year by the American Humanist Society and listed in Foreign Policy Magazine’s “The World’s Top 100 Public Intellectuals” and Time’s “The 100 Most Influential People in the World Today.”

The lecture is the public event of the WHO and University of Cambridge Global Violence Reduction Conference 2014 and supported by the UBS Optimus Foundation.

Free admission

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This talk is part of the Steven Pinker: The Past, Present and Future of Violence series.

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