The Evolution of our Social Brains


The 2005 book “Everything Bad is Good for You” uses pop culture to demonstrate the idea that humanity is getting smarter, and our new intelligence is heavily weighted toward our social IQ. Why are our brains mapped to engage in networking and social behavior? This presentation will look at the Bonobo, an endangered ape in the Congo and the subject of recent NOVA documentaries. The Bonobo is a highly social, highly sexual and “peace-loving” species — the hippie of the ape world. A Bonobo named Kanzi has acquired real grammatical language and humor. Another Bonobo in a zoo attempted to save an injured bird in its enclosure. I will try to present that empathy and selflessness are the highest demonstration of social intelligence.

Jenny Andrews


Jenny works for a local environmental nonprofit. She enjoys music, sports and gardening.