At the heart of this lecture is the outstanding scientist Charles Darwin and his famous theory of evolution, which tremendously changed the scientific and philosophical thought of the XIX century. Surprisingly Darwin himself dared to mention human evolution just once in his Origin of Species, saying: “The light will be thrown on the origin of man and his history”. However, his work has already helped us decode the DNA sequence – direct evidence of evolution. Now it is possible for any of us to get a DNA test in just a few hours. Steve Jones shows how DNA not only gives us an opportunity to see the extraordinary similarity between humans, chimpanzees, and other primates, but also that human beings are much more than just “the next step of the evolution”.
The lecture took place on 19 May 2016 at the State Tretyakov Gallery in Moscow as part of the lecture programme "400 years of British history in portraits".
John Stephen Jones is a Welsh genetic scientist, member of Royal Society and from 1995 to 1999 and 2008 to June 2010 was Head of the Department of Genetics, Evolution and Environment at University College London. His studies are conducted in the Halton Laboratory. He is also a television presenter and prize-winning author on the subject of biology, especially evolution. He is one of the key contemporary popular writers on evolution.
In 1996 John Stephen Jones won the Royal Society Michael Faraday Prize for “the extensive contribution to the science popularization in the field of human evolution, studies of race and gender, hereditary diseases and genetic manipulations and the dissemination of scientific knowledge in his radio and television programs, lectures, popular science books, writing for a constant scientific rubric in The Daily Telegraph in cooperation with other printed media”.