Washington D.C. Premiere
DARWIN’S NATURAL HEIR
DARWIN’S NATURAL HEIR (USA, 2008, 52 min.)
Washington, D.C. Premiere The life and pioneering work of the eminent naturalist, biologist, professor, writer and environmental advocate Dr. E.O. Wilson is profiled in this portrait film. Winner of two Pulitzer Prizes for his groundbreaking books, The Ants and On Human Nature, Dr. Wilson, a professor emeritus at Harvard University, is considered among the leading thinkers of the 20th century. The film opens with a bioblitz in New York City’s Central Park, where Dr. Wilson collaborates with children to document as many living creatures as possible. As a young boy, Wilson had his own adventures in Alabama swamps and on Florida beaches and, through his boundless curiosity, became interested in the big questions of biology. The film reproduces some of his classic experiments on ant behavior that led to his theory, as a Harvard professor 30 years later, that genes determine behavior, not just in ants, but in all social animals, including humans. Examining the origins of sociobiology, the film shows how it emerged into the new discipline of evolutionary biology. Traveling with Wilson to places that first impressed him with the richness of their biodiversity, including the Central American rainforest and tropical islands in the South Pacific, viewers then glimpse in the Dominican Republic the processes that are responsible for generating the earth’s extraordinary diversity as well as the processes that are catastrophically undoing much of that work. As a result of his affinity with nature, Wilson emerges later in life as an environmental advocate. While Wilson marvels at the progress of the conservation movement over the past few decades, he warns of the increasing threats to the natural world from the devastating loss of biodiversity. Directed by David Dugan, Windfall Films. Executive Producer: Neil Patterson, Neil Patterson Productions.
Discussion with E.O. Wilson and filmmaker Neil Patterson.
Tickets required. National Geographic Society members with advance purchase or reservations only, $15; Nonmembers, $18. For information and to order tickets, please call 202-857-7700, fax your ticket request to 202-857-7747 or purchase tickets online at www.nglive.org.