Free Agents: How Evolution Gave Us Free Will
Smithsonian Associates Inside Science Interview Series
Welcome to The Not Old Better Show, Smithsonian Associates Inside Science Interview Series on radio and podcast. I’m Paul Vogelzang, and we’re broadcasting from just outside Washington, DC. As part of our Smithsonian Associates Interview Series, we have a special episode that promises to challenge your perceptions and inspire action on the part of all, especially our Smithsonian Associates audience. Today, we’re honored to have Dr. Kevin Mitchell, a renowned neuroscientist and popular previous guest on the program who will discuss his groundbreaking book, “Free Agents: How Evolution Gave Us Free Will.” Dr. Kevin Mitchell will be appearing at Smithsonian Associates coming up, so please check out our show notes today for more details. But, we have Dr. Kevin Mitchell today to chat about Smithsonian and all things ‘free will’ and answer the oft-asked question about whether we humans even have ‘free will?’
Now, let’s set the record straight. The prevailing wisdom often suggests that free will is nothing but an illusion, a byproduct of our brain chemistry, genes, or even the laws of physics. Dr. Mitchell is here to offer a compelling counter-narrative that will make you rethink these assumptions.
In “Free Agents,” and during our conversation today, Dr. Mitchell takes us on an astonishing evolutionary journey. He’ll tell us that living beings, including us humans, are not just passive entities being pushed around by physical forces. We have evolved complex nervous systems that grant us the ability to perceive the world, make sense of it, and act with purpose. Imagine that—billions of years culminating in the power to choose, to reason, and to shape our own futures.
So, what does this mean for you, especially for our audience of seasoned adults over 60? It means that understanding the evolutionary basis of free will can empower you to make more conscious choices. Whether it’s about your health, your relationships, or your overall well-being, this knowledge can be a game-changer.
My thanks to Smithsonian Associate Dr. Kevin Mitchell. Dr. Kevin Mitchell will be appearing at Smithsonian Associates coming up, so please check out our show notes today for more details. My thanks to the Smithsonian team for all they do to support the show. My thanks to you, my wonderful audience here on radio and podcast. Please be well, be safe, and Let’s Talk About Better…The Not Old Better Show. Thanks, everybody, and we’ll see you next week.