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50th Anniversary Lecture Series: Neanderthals and the Beginnings of People Like Us

Sunday, 14 April, 2013

McClung Museum Auditorium, 2-3:30 pm, Sunday, April 14th, Free and open to all

In honor of their 50th Anniversary, The McClung Museum of Natural History and Culture will be presenting lectures by renowned scholars on topics that pertain to the Museum's collections and research.

For the second lecture in this series, Dr. Fred H. Smith of Illinois State University will speak about neandertals--a topic that has fascinated both scientists and the general public for more than 150 years. These early humans evolved in Europe but spread widely into Asia and likely North Africa. Just who are these beings that are both amazingly similar to us and yet possess seemingly distinctive differences? What do the similarities and differences really tell us? And how are these burly, ice age people related to us? We will examine cultural, anatomical and genetic evidence that have provided some surprising perspectives over the last few years. These perspectives, in turn, shed light both on what I means to be a Neandertal, as well as what it means to be us.

Speaker bio:
Fred H. Smith grew up in Lenoir City and graduated from UT in 1970. At UT he studied the three disciplines that have defined his career: anthropology, zoology and German. After earning his PhD from the University of Michigan, he returned to UT to serve on the faculty in the anthropology department. After subsequent stints at Northern Illinois and Loyola Universities, Smith now hold the position of University Professor of Anthropology and Biological Sciences and serves as chair of the Department of Sociology and Anthropology at Illinois State University. He has conducted paleoanthropological fieldwork throughout Europe, East Africa, western Asia, and South Africa and has published extensively on the paleobiology of Neandertals and issues relating to the origin of modern humans. He is a past president of the American Association of Physical Anthropologists and will receive the Gabriel Lasker Award for Distinguished Service at the AAPA annual meeting in Knoxville in April, 2013.



Free and open to all


McClung Museum of Natural History and Culture
1327 Circle Park Dr
University of Tennessee
Knoxville, TN 37996

Phone: (865) 974-2144
Website: Click to Visit

Event Contact

McClung Museum

Phone: 865-974-2144
Website: Click to Visit

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