Legendary Biologist, Pulitzer Winner E.O. Wilson Addresses USAO March 26
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Legendary biologist and two-time Pulitzer Prize winner Edward O. Wilson will be the featured speaker during the third annual Emerson-Wier Liberal Arts Symposium March 26 at the University of Science and Arts of Oklahoma.
Wilson will address the public during a lecture at 7:30 p.m. in the Te Ata Memorial Auditorium in Troutt Hall on the USAO campus. His presentation is The Creation: An Appeal to Save Life on Earth. A panel discussion also is scheduled from 4-6 p.m. in the Davis Hall Amphitheater at USAO. Both events are free and open to the public.
A Harvard professor for 40 years, Wilson has written 20 books, won two Pulitzer Prizes and discovered hundreds of new species. He is considered by many as the father of the modern environmental movement.
Wilson is currently the Pellegrino University Research Professor Emeritus at Harvard University and continues research at the Museum of Comparative Zoology. He earned his doctorial degree from Harvard and a bachelor’s and master’s degree from the University of Alabama.
Wilson’s honors include the National Medal of Science, the International Prize for Biology, top honors from the Royal Swedish Academy of Sciences, the Gold Medal of the Worldwide Fund for Nature, the Distinguished Humanist Award from the American Humanist Association, Japan’s International Prize for Biology and the Crafoord Prize from the Swedish Academy of Sciences.
With entomologist Bart Holldobler, Wilson wrote what many consider the definitive volume on ants – Ants. The book won the 1991 Pulitzer Prize for nonfiction. He also won a Pulitzer in 1979 for On Human Nature.
Wilson’s recent books include Consilience, which draws together the sciences, humanities and the arts into a broad study of human knowledge; The Future of Life, which offers a plan for saving Earth’s biological heritage; From So Simple a Beginning, a collection of the four seminal works of Darwin with new introductions by Wilson, and The Creation, a plea for science and religion to work together to save the planet.
His latest book, The Superorganism, was hailed by the New York Times as “an astonishing account of the intricate and unexpected swarm intelligence of wasps, bees, ants and termites.”
As a child, Wilson suffered an accident that claimed the sight in his right eye. He lost part of his hearing in adolescence and struggled with math and a mild form of dyslexia. So he decided to study insects – particularly ants. He is now regarded as one of the most important thinkers of the 20th century.
In addition to Wilson's evening presentation, five presenters will take part in a panel discussion at 4 p.m. in the Davis Hall Amphitheater at USAO. The panel includes Dr. Robert Frodeman, director of the University of North Texas Center for the Study of Interdisciplinarity; Dr. Kenneth Hobson, assistant professor of entomology at the University of Oklahoma; Dr. Edna Manning, current and first president of the Oklahoma School of Science and Mathematics; Dr. Keith B. Miller, research assistant professor of geology at Kansas State University, and Joseph Thai, Presidential Professor of Law at the University of Oklahoma School of Law.
USAO’s Emerson-Wier Liberal Arts Symposium series is sponsored annually by the USAO Foundation and was inspired by endowment funds created by Oklahoma College for Women alumni Gladys Anderson Emerson and Nance Foules Wier.