What Makes Us Human? Lessons from the Study of Wild Chimpanzees

November 8, 2018
6:00 pm – 7:30 pm

Café Brauer, Lincoln Park Zoo
Cafe Brauer, North Stockton Drive, Chicago, IL, USA

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Chimpanzees and their sister species, the bonobo, are humankind’s closest living relatives. Because of this close evolutionary relationship, chimpanzees provide a model system to evaluate claims about human uniqueness.

John Mitani’s 23-year study of an unusually large community of chimpanzees at Ngogo in Kibale National Park, Uganda, continues to challenge our notions of what makes us human.

In this talk, Mitani will review findings that reveal some interesting parallels between humans and chimpanzees with respect to friendships, longevity, and cooperation. Humans form long-lasting friendships, live a very long time, and are an unusually cooperative species. Studies of the Ngogo chimpanzees indicate that the gap between them and us in these regards may be smaller than previously thought. These findings furnish new insights into chimpanzee behavior and are particularly relevant as we continue to struggle to conserve the dwindling populations of these animals.

Event Details

This program is presented in partnership with the Chicago Council on Science and Technology, The Leakey Foundation, and the Lincoln Park Zoo.

Doors open at 5:30 pm, program starts at 6:00 pm. Tickets are $10. Please reserve your tickets ahead of time as space is limited.

Travel and Parking:

Lincoln Park Zoo is located off Lake Shore Drive at the Fullerton Parkway exit, just minutes north of downtown Chicago. From I-94, exit at either Fullerton Parkway or North Avenue and go east.

CTA bus routes 151 or 156 both serve the zoo; for schedules, contact the RTA/CTA at 312-836-7000. Visit the CTA/RTA Travel Information Center.

The zoo’s parking lot entrance is located at Fullerton Parkway and Cannon Drive (2400 North Cannon Drive, Chicago IL 60614). Parking fees are typically collected at the lot exit. The parking lot opens at 6 a.m. and closes at 11 p.m. Please see adjacent sidebar for the zoo’s public hours. Parking rates range from $20-35 per day and include applicable parking taxes. Prices are subject to change based on day of the week, seasonality, special events, weather, and other factors.  Zoo members receive discounted or free parking benefits during zoo hours.

Notice: As a guest of Chicago Council on Science and Technology (C2ST), you agree to be photographed, videotaped, or filmed and grant C2ST permission to put the finished footage/photography to any uses that it may deem proper including marketing, advertising (print, radio, and television) and PR-related activities.