Stony Brook University                             Department of Biochemistry and Cell Biology
Professor Paul M. Bingham / Professor Joanne Souza



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Professor Paul M. Bingham

Prof. Bingham has been on the faculty of the Department of Biochemistry and Cell Biology in the School of Medicine at Stony Brook for the last two decades. He has a longstanding commitment to excellence in undergraduate education.

Prof. Bingham received his PhD in Biochemistry and Molecular Biology from Harvard. His research interests are broad – including basic molecular mechanisms in cellular and developmental processes, the cell biology of cancer and the evolutionary biology of humans.

This last research interest led to the development of a powerful, new theory of human evolution (see Bingham, 2000, Evolutionary Anthropology 9: 248, for a review). Prof. Bingham continues to work in this exciting and important area. BIO358 is an outgrowth of this work.

In the course, we explore diverse biological theories of human origins, properties and history. The course is designed for majors in all disciplines – sciences, social sciences and humanities. We take a remarkable journey through the entire diverse human story. We understand our origins as biological creatures and our relationship to other animal species. We explore the origins of our diverse uniquely human properties – including complex language, our large powerful minds, our elaborate ethical/political sense and our vast ecological dominance. Finally, we investigate how all of human history emerges, not as a process inscrutable to scientific analysis, but rather as a straightforward product of our biological heritage.

By the end of the course your understanding of yourself, of other people and the human past and future will be enlarged and changed profoundly. New insight into our nature allows us to understand how to approach the building of a better, more humane future. Students often name this course as the one they take at Stony Brook that most changes their lives.

Professor Souza and I look forward to seeing you in class.


Professor Joanne Souza

Professor Souza earned her Masters of Science in Psychology from Walden University. She is a Stony Brook Psychology Alumna, Summa Cum Laude, and has a strong interest in evolutionary biology. She was the recipient of various research awards in psychology at Stony Brook. She continues to pursue her interest in human behavior from both the social psychology and neuroscience perspectives. She has contributed to research in physiological psychology in the areas of stress and anxiety. Her research interests are in the evolution of social fear from an evolutionary perspective.

One of the many assets Professor Souza brings to Stony Brook is a strong previous background in the business world in the area of communications and technology, among others. She has worked for both large and small companies but was originally trained by AT&T as an industry consultant in the areas of health and education.

For the past six years Professor Souza has held the position of Lecturer for BIO358. This course not only explores our evolutionary origins, our uniqueness as a species and our subsequent life history, but it also explores the origins and evolution of many of our social, political, economic, and reproductive behaviors. We feel that in order for us to fully understand our behaviors, we must first understand their evolutionary origins and subsequent development. Knowledge and understanding of ourselves and why we behave and feel as we do is the first step to making choices to possibly create a more humane, purposeful, and enjoyable future for ourselves and our descendants.

Professor Souza brings her academic, social, technological, and course development skills to BIO358, helping to continually develop and enhance student-to-student, student-to-faculty, and faculty-to-student discourse and interaction. We look forward to not only teaching you the content of BIO358, but also to discussing and exchanging ideas and interpretations with you for a more complete learning experience.



P.M. Bingham & J. Souza, 2006
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