Carl Safina in Conversation with Luanne Rice

Some people insist that culture is strictly a human feat. What are they afraid of?

Becoming Wild: How Animal Cultures Raise Families, Create Beauty, and Achieve Peace looks into three cultures of other-than-human beings in some of Earth’s remaining wild places. It shows how if you’re a sperm whale, a scarlet macaw, or a chimpanzee, you, too, experience your life with the understanding that you are an individual in a particular community. You, too, are who you are not by genes alone; your culture is a second form of inheritance. You receive it from thousands of individuals, from pools of knowledge passing through generations like an eternal torch. You, too, may raise young, know beauty, or struggle to negotiate a peace. And your culture, too, changes and evolves.

The light of knowledge needs adjusting as situations change, so a capacity for learning, especially social learning, allows behaviors to adjust, to change much faster than genes alone could adapt. Becoming Wild offers a glimpse into cultures among non-human animals through looks at the lives of individuals in different present-day animal societies.

By showing how others teach and learn, Safina offers a fresh understanding of what is constantly going on beyond humanity. With reporting from deep in nature, alongside individual creatures in their free-living communities, this book offers a very privileged glimpse behind the curtain of life on Earth, and helps inform the answer to that most urgent of questions: Who are we here with?











When: Tue., June 30, 2020 at 6:00 pm
Where: 192 Books
192 Tenth Ave.
212-255-4022
Price: Free
Buy tickets/get more info now
See other events in these categories:

Some people insist that culture is strictly a human feat. What are they afraid of?

Becoming Wild: How Animal Cultures Raise Families, Create Beauty, and Achieve Peace looks into three cultures of other-than-human beings in some of Earth’s remaining wild places. It shows how if you’re a sperm whale, a scarlet macaw, or a chimpanzee, you, too, experience your life with the understanding that you are an individual in a particular community. You, too, are who you are not by genes alone; your culture is a second form of inheritance. You receive it from thousands of individuals, from pools of knowledge passing through generations like an eternal torch. You, too, may raise young, know beauty, or struggle to negotiate a peace. And your culture, too, changes and evolves.

The light of knowledge needs adjusting as situations change, so a capacity for learning, especially social learning, allows behaviors to adjust, to change much faster than genes alone could adapt. Becoming Wild offers a glimpse into cultures among non-human animals through looks at the lives of individuals in different present-day animal societies.

By showing how others teach and learn, Safina offers a fresh understanding of what is constantly going on beyond humanity. With reporting from deep in nature, alongside individual creatures in their free-living communities, this book offers a very privileged glimpse behind the curtain of life on Earth, and helps inform the answer to that most urgent of questions: Who are we here with?

Buy tickets/get more info now