Gaia Vince: Transcendence: How Humans Evolved Through Fire, Language, Beauty, and Time.

  • Streaming here from 7.30pm on Thursday 25th March.
  • FREE. If you are able to, we would greatly appreciate any donations in lieu of ticket sales for this event.

Broadcaster and award-winning science writer (she was the first woman to win the Royal Society Science Book of the Year for Adventures in the Anthropocene), Gaia Vince joins us for a virtual Berwins Salon North to explore the astonishing story of how culture enabled us to become the most successful species on Earth and help us reflect on the way we now want to evolve beyond the pandemic.

Gaia will be in conversation with Helen Bagnall. 


Discover The Book


Humans are the most successful species on Earth; a planet-altering force of nature. Meanwhile, our closest living relatives, the now-endangered chimpanzees, continue to live as they have for millions of years. Yet we evolved through the same process. What are we then? And now we have remade the world, what are we becoming?

Setting out to answer this question, Gaia Vince retells our evolution story. Unlike any other species on earth we determine the course of our own destiny, something that she argues rests on a special relationship between our genes, environment and culture going back into deep time. It is our collective culture, rather than our individual intelligence, that makes humans unique. Vince shows how our four evolutionary drivers – Fire, Language, Beauty and Time – are further transforming our species into a superorganism: a hyper-cooperative mass of humanity that she calls Homo omnis, or ‘Homni’. Drawing on cutting-edge advances in population genetics, archaeology, palaeontology and neuroscience, Transcendence compels us to reimagine ourselves, showing us to be on the brink of something grander – and potentially more destructive.