Speaker: Yulia Kovas, Goldsmiths, London University
Title: Oedipus Rex in the Genomic Era
In this seminar we will take a journey into the Genomic Era, taking Sophocles as a guide. We will explore the rapid genetic advances and ever expanding insights into the human genome. We will explore what these insights mean for the ancient themes of Sophocles’ tragedies: free will, fate, and chance; prediction, misinterpretation, the burden that comes with knowledge of the future; self-fulfilling and self-defeating prophecies; the forces that contribute to similarities and differences among people; roots and lineage; and the judgement of oneself and others. Using Oedipus Rex as a lens, we will examine existential, social, ethical, and legal concerns and dilemmas introduced by the genomic era – highlighting the relevance of behavioural genetics across the humanities, social and life sciences.