Speaker Series: Dr. Amy Parish | Reflections on Our Closest Living Relatives and Ourselves: Lessons from the Bonobo Sisterhood

Please join me in welcoming our colleague Amy Parish on Thursday, December 13th from 3:15-4:15p in the Community Hall.
Reflections on Our Closest Living Relatives and Ourselves:  Lessons from the Bonobo Sisterhood
Dr. Amy Parish is an interdisciplinary scholar who teaches English in the Upper School at La Jolla Country Day School. She also has taught at University of Southern California in the Anthropology, Gender Studies, Arts and Letters and Public Health departments and programs since 1999. Dr. Parish is one of the world’s leading experts on the social and sexual behavior of the bonobo. Bonobos and chimpanzees are the two closest living relatives of humans living today. She discovered that the social system of the bonobo is unusual in many respects: females form real and meaningful bonds in the absence of kinship and females attack and dominate males. She was the first to characterize bonobo society as a matriarchy.  In all of her research, Dr. Parish uses an evolutionary, bio-cultural, feminist, and interdisciplinary approach to shed light on the origins of human behavior. In 2008, she received a Mellon Award for excellence in faculty mentoring of undergraduate students. Dr. Parish teaches with the goal of helping students to internalize learning enough to pursue it in the future in their own ways. She wants active learners to emerge—students who make sense of the world through their own eyes, experiences, and values, so that they might be significantly enriched by their educational experiences. She is a frequent interlocutor in the ALOUD dialogue series at the Los Angeles Public Library and her work has been featured in Ms. Magazine and the New York Times. She has appeared on Nova, National Geographic Explorer, NPR, and Discovery Health Channel productions. Dr. Parish is a fellow of the Los Angeles Institute for the Humanities.
To read her latest Op Ed “Sequelae: A Primatologist’s Perspective on Brett Kavanaugh,” click here.

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