The Symbolic Animal. Evolution and Neuroethology of Aesthetics

The Symbolic Animal. Evolution and Neuroethology of Aesthetics:

October 15-19, 2016

Erice, Sicily, ITALY

Directors of the Workshop:
Leonida Fusani (Konrad Lorenz Institute of Ethology,University of Veterinary Medicine, Vienna &
Department of Cognitive Biology, University of Vienna)
Vittorio Gallese (University of Parma & University of London)

Purpose of the Workshop

The overall purpose of the Workshop is to investigate the biological mechanisms that underlie symbol making and the perception and appreciation of beauty, from the attractive features of sexually selected traits to human figurative arts. Specifically, we aim to establish a discussion platform between scientists and scholars from different disciplines to address one of the most fascinating yet less understood phenomenon of the animal and human brain, that is, the preference for signals or manufacts that have particular configurational properties or obey to established canons. The workshop will be highly integrative, interdisciplinary, and comparative, including evolutionary biologists, ethologists, anthropologists, evolutionary psychologists, neuroscientists, psychologists, and philosophers. We encourage researchers, students, reporters, other professionals, and anyone interested in the theme of this Workshop to register. There will be opportunities for post-docs to present their research as well as for informal interaction and discussion among all speakers and other workshop participants. During the workshop, a one-day excursion to visit nearby Greek temples is scheduled for all participants.

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