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Public Meeting & Greg Laden on Darwin, Evolutionary Biology, & Race

  • Feb 19, 2012 · 2:00 PM
  • This location is no longer available


1:00-1:15 p.m. – Social time

1:15-1:45 p.m. – February Public Business Meeting

1:45-2:00 p.m. – Break

2:00-3:30 p.m. – Presentation: Greg Laden speaking on Darwin, Evolutionary Biology, & Race

4:00-whenever – Dinner at Panda Garden (1706 Lexington Avenue North; Roseville, MN)


February's Speaker:

In celebration of Darwin Day (Feb. 12th), our speaker for this month’s public meeting is going to speak on "Darwin, Evolutionary Biology, & Race."

Anti-science and creationist rhetoric, coming from organizations like the Discovery Institute, often paints Darwin as handmaiden to the Nazis and founder of racist biology. The eugenics movement of the early twentieth century is uncritically melded with Darwin’s writings that touched on race, and the genetic determinism of certain aspects of modern biology is uncritically melded with Darwinian theories. In this talk, Greg Laden will address Darwin’s racism (or lack thereof) and explore the relationship between concepts of race and racism and evolutionary biology of Darwin’s day as well as that of the twenty-first century. Darwin was a nineteenth century gentlemen who benefited greatly from his position in a world colonial empire, but it was his exploration of that world that led him away from religious dogma and soured him on certain racist concepts. He was the founder of much of the theory that was later to be used in rather nefarious ways, but those uses were never based on good biology. This talk will directly address the relationship between modern biology and modern race theory.

Greg writes and teaches about anthropology, race and racism, the biology of gender, evolution, human evolution, nature, birds, and open source operating systems. He is an active member of the skeptics community and an unabashed progressive liberal. He often interviews guests for Minnesota Atheists’ AtheistsTalk radio program. His website is and he blogs at and He also writes an article every month for


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  • A former member
    A former member

    Greg Laden is always a great speaker and knows how to engage his audience.

    February 20, 2012

  • Douglas H.


    February 20, 2012

  • Pete H.

    Very interesting discussion, as reflected in the large attendance.

    February 20, 2012

  • STB

    Greg's presentation as insightful, comprehensive and informative. I enjoyed his sense of humour, and the way he debunked the data that has been used by institutions interested in prepetuating racist policies and stereotypes.

    February 20, 2012

  • Betsy

    I'm so thankful for brilliant, thinking people like Greg Laden! I will be reading his blog more often. Can't wait for more talks like this.

    February 20, 2012

  • Bob S.

    Very useful. Armed me with additional knowledge to counter the ignorance that surrounds us.

    February 20, 2012

  • Patrick F.

    A great speaker, and even better conversations at the end!

    February 20, 2012

  • Rhonda

    I didn't get a chance to meet all of the newbies today. I'll figure out a better system for next time. I hope you enjoyed yourselves and will be back for more.

    February 19, 2012

  • A former member
    A former member

    Very interesting, informative and enlightening. I wished the speaker would've addressed more of the present-day issues surrounding this topic, especially surrounding the spurious use of psychometrics in the determining of intelligence of non-caucasian races. Overall, this was a great lecture.

    February 19, 2012

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