The Caroline Werner Gannett Project 2007-08
David Bainbridge

David Bainbridge

science writer, veterinarian and reproductive biologist


“Teenagers: The Pinnacle of Human Evolution?”

When: Monday, April 18, 2011 at 8:00PM
Where: Carlson Auditorium (Building 76)

Talk Description:

Often dismissed as an unpleasant transitional stage or even maligned as a blight on society, are teenagers really as unproductive and worthless as we are usually told? David Bainbridge, the author of 'Teenagers: A Natural History' uses anthropology, physiology, history and psychology to argue that the teenage years should instead be seen as a unique human innovation - the very phenomenon, in fact, which has allowed us to achieve our unique success. He argues that many of the wonderful and stressful things which teenagers experience may only be understood in the light of our species' bizarre evolutionary history. Zits, sex, drugs and rock 'n' roll - all human life is here.


David Bainbridge is a popular science writer, veterinarian and reproductive biologist. At present he is the Clinical Veterinary Anatomist at the University of Cambridge and Admissions Tutor in the Arts and Humanities at St Catharine's College. After gaining zoology and veterinary degrees from Cambridge he studied at London's Institute of Zoology and Royal Veterinary College, and Oxford University, as well as working at Cornell and Sydney Universities. His main field of research has been the interactions between fetus and mother in humans and animals. He has previously written popular science books about pregnancy, sex chromosomes, and the brain. He is currently writing his sixth book, Middle Age: A Natural History and also continues to undertake some veterinary practice.

Links: Teenagers: A Natural History  Beyond the Zonules of Zinn: A Fantastic Journey Through Your Brain   The X in Sex: How the X Chromosome Controls Our Lives  Making Babies: The Science of Pregnancy  Two Views of Mind: Abhidharma & Brain Science