Roots Revelations: Genetic Ancestry Tracing and the YouTube Generation
Continuing a Bates College series exploring the impacts of technology on concepts of race, Alondra Nelson, associate professor of sociology at Columbia University, speaks on "Roots Revelations: Genetic Ancestry Tracing and the YouTube Generation" at 7:15 p.m. Nelson specializes in race and ethnicity in the U.S.; gender and kinship; socio-historical studies of medicine, science and technology; and social and cultural theory.
Nelson's talk is the third public presentation in the series "Race in a Post-Human World," which explores the collapse of social categories caused by advances in technology. Sponsored by the Bates College Lectures Committee, the series will conclude in May (date TBA) with a dance performance by acting director and assistant professor of dance at Bates, Rachel Boggia. Her performance, "In the Very Eye of the Night," is conceived and directed by Marlon Barrios Solano, a Venezuelan dance and new media artist, teacher and researcher. Boggia, who has been on faculty at Wesleyan University, Dickinson College and Ohio State University, specializes in multidisciplinary collaboration with scientists, dance documentaries and multimedia performance.
The term "post-humanism" expresses what many believe is our current condition as human beings. Thanks to technological advances -- such as medical interventions like smart prosthetics and implanted defibrillators, and human-emulating capabilities such as artificial intelligence -- the old boundaries between animal and machine are increasingly blurred.
Similarly, post-humanism challenges long-held notions of other categorizations of humanity such as gender, race and species -- making post-humanism a concept that is highly controversial, but extremely idea-rich across a wide range of academic disciplines.
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