Tag Archives: Robert Sapolsky

Robert Sapolsky: the Uniqueness of Humans

I’m so happy to see that the TED site, by far my favorite collection of online talks (I’ve posted several of them on this blog before), picked up this Robert Sapolsky talk. If you don’t see it here, or if you want to watch it in a higher quality HD mode, you can click here for the link to the YouTube source.  The TED talk user ratings call this “informative inspiring fascinating.”

This talk is fascinating. Dr. Sapolsky, the author of Why Zebras Don’t Get Ulcers, makes a set of amazing “contrast and compare” points about how we are remarkably similar to a lot of other animals in much of our behavior, but — and believe me, this part is going to make you think — different. His talk is fun, entertaining, and important.

By a stroke of good fortune, I was there at Stanford Univeristy to see this talk when he delivered it (actually last June, although the site says September). I wanted to share it then, and was reminded of it today, when I saw it among the new talks on the TED site.

Us vs. Apes, and Why we Care

How are we different from apes? Apes also pass culture on to groups, apes can be violent, apes can be empathetic, but no other species has the power for the abstract.

And why does this matter? How does it affect our lives?

Robert Zapolsky, author of Why Zebras Don’t Get Ulcers, and a favorite professor at Stanford, gave this talk last Saturday as part of Stanford graduation. He starts at 4:51.

If you can’t see the video here, you can click here for the source on YouTube.