P (Public) Aimed at presenting scientific issues of general concern to a public audience.
G (General) Intended for an audience of both scientists and other scholars representing a broad range of disciplines.
S (Specialized) Aimed at scientists and students in fields that are closely related to that of the lecturer.


William H. Calvin, Ph.D.
University of Washington
Box 351800
Seattle WA 98195-1800 USA

Phone: 1.206.328.1192
Fax: 1.206.374.2260
E-mail: It's an anti-spam image, so please retype into email header
URL:  faculty.washington.edu/wcalvin

The Evolution of Human Minds:
The Ice Age Emergence of Higher Intellectual Functions  (P, G).

Shocks and Instabilities: Climate is like a drunk.
If left alone, it sits.  Forced to move, it staggers. (P, G).

The Big Step Up to Higher Intellectual Functions: 
Neural Stages and Circuits (G, S).

"I talk a lot about ape-to-human evolution and all those abrupt climate changes along the way. But mostly I try to extend Darwin's intellectual revolution to brain mechanisms. What sort of Darwinian brain wiring allows us, in just a split second, to shape up a better thought?"

Calvin is a theoretical neurobiologist, Affiliate Professor of Psychiatry and Behavioral Sciences at the University of Washington in Seattle. He was educated at Northwestern University, MIT, Harvard Medical School, and the University of Washington (Ph.D., Physiology & Biophysics, 1966). 

He is the author of the Atlantic Monthly cover story, “The great climate flip-flop” about the earth’s climate instabilities studied in oceanography and atmospheric sciences.  He is the author of 11 books, mostly for general readers, about brains and evolution including The Throwing Madonna, The Cerebral Symphony, The River That Runs Uphill, The Cerebral Code, Conversations with Neil's Brain (with George Ojemann), and How Brains Think.  His book with Derek Bickerton, Lingua ex Machina: Reconciling Darwin and Chomsky with the Human Brain, is about syntax.  A Brain for All Seasons: Human Evolution and Abrupt Climate Change is about what sudden climate flips did to human evolution over the last 2.5 million years, how the climate lurches resonated with punctuated equilibria to pump up brain size; it won the 2002 Phi Beta Kappa book award for science.  His forthcoming book is The Brief History of the Mind:  From Apes to Intellect and Beyond.


William Calvin's Home Page  For more specialized examples of bio's, and pitfalls to avoid, see the author page.

The Cerebral Code:  Thinking a Thought in the Mosaics of the Mind Conversations with Neil's Brain:  Tjhe Neural Nature of Thought and Language How Brains Think:  Evolving Intelligence, Then and Now Lingua ex Machina:  Reconciling Darwin and Chomsky with the Human Brain