New Paltz Evolutionary Psychology Lab Presents at the Hudson Valley Humanists’ Annual Darwin Day Event

On Sunday, February 4, 2018, the SUNY New Paltz Evolutionary Psychology lab, directed by psychology faculty member, Glenn Geher, presented a symposium on the evolutionary origins of beauty and art. Presentations were given by Glenn along with six students from the lab. These students included two undergraduate psychology majors (Alec Goldstein and Kelsey Newhook), three graduate students in psychology (Amanda Baroni, Olivia Jewell, and Julie Planke), and one graduate student in mental health counseling (Cynthia Stewart).

The talks focused on the recent NY Times bestseller, The Evolution of Beauty, by Richard Prum – and included various themes such as the evolution of conspicuous plumage in birds, the function of tattooing and body piercing, the evolutionary origins of dance, the neurocognitive underpinnings of aesthetic experiences, and the role of neoteny in perceptions of beauty.

The Hudson Valley Humanists are an organization dedicated to advancing the human condition through scientific inquiry, education, and open dialog.

From l-r: Tiya Cotter (Hudson Valley Humanists), Alec Goldstein (BA student, Psychology), Julie Planke (MA student, Psychology), Kelsey Newhook (BA student, Psychology), Carol Auer (Hudson Valley Humanists), Glenn Geher (Director of the New Paltz Evolutionary Psychology Lab), Amanda Baroni (MA student, Psychology), Olivia Jewell (MA student, Psychology), Cynthia Stewart (MS student, Counseling) – photo credit: Carl Cox Studios – Rosendale

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