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Plumbing the Depths: Exploring Violence and Warfare in Humanity’s Past

Event Type
Department of the Classics
Knight Auditorium, Spurlock Museum
Sep 16, 2022   2:00 pm  
Professor Nam C. Kim, University of Wisconsin-Madison
Originating Calendar
Department of the Classics

Is warfare as old as humanity? Are we an inherently violent species?
How would we know? Signs of warfare appear as soon as we began
crafting our earliest written records several thousand years ago. But
what can we see beyond that literary horizon? This lecture highlights
anthropological research to contemplate warfare’s antiquity and
origins, providing a glimpse into past contexts of organized violence
in the deeper recesses of humanity’s past. We will take a tour around
the world, considering select cases across space and time, from the
Ice Ages to the present day. The lecture explores the evidence for
varied manifestations of war and what those data can reveal about
our shared past, our evolution as a species, and our prospects for

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