When humans started to talk

  • Date: 7 September 2021
  • Time: 13:00 pm
  • Cost: Free
  • Venue: A Canteen
Book via the British Science Festival website
A young boy shouting into an old-fashioned microphone

Speech sets humans apart from other animals. When, how and why did we develop this ability?

Our understanding of how speech evolved is far from complete.

Though the hyoid bone (supporting both the voice box and tongue) fossilises, the soft tissue of the voice box does not. This makes it hard to figure out when humans evolved the ability to talk. 

Behavioural ecologist Dr Jacob Dunn (ARU) combines existing knowledge of living species similar to humans - such as primates including chimpanzees and gorillas - with modern digital scanning technology to help fill in the gaps in our understanding of speech evolution.

  • Date: 7 September 2021
  • Time: 13:00 pm
  • Cost: Free
  • Venue: A Canteen
Book via the British Science Festival website
Return to all British Science Festival events