The 61st Alfred Korzybski Memorial Lecture & 2-Day Symposium 2016-10-31T23:07:14+00:00

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The 61st Alfred Korzybski Memorial Lecture & Dinner


Terrence W. Deacon, Ph.D.

Terrence Deacon
61st Alfred Korzybski Memorial Lecturer

  • Author of Incomplete Nature: How Mind Emerged from Matter
  • Lecture Title: Aristotle’s Revenge: Final Cause and the Origins of Life”

Friday Evening, October 25th, 2013
6:00pm Cash Bar
6:30pm Dinner
8:00pm Lecture

The Princeton Club
15 West 43rd St. (between 5th & 6th Avenues)
New York, NY 10036

Updated 10/18/2013

Dinner: $80.00 per person.  Dinner is free for current IGS members who are paid up as of 10/25/2013, plus one guest. IGS members: Please affirm your attendance with an email to, or by calling the IGS office at (212) 729-7973.

Lecture: Free Admission (no reservation needed)

To purchase an advance ticket for the dinner for non-members and additional guests, please visit

A 2-Day Symposium
Sponsored by the Institute of General Semantics

Title: “Language and Symbol Use in the Twenty-First Century”

Co-sponsored by:

Saturday, October 26th – Sunday, October 27th, 2013

Times TBD

The Princeton Club
15 West 43rd St. (between 5th & 6th Avenues)
New York, NY 10036

Symposium: Free Admission (no reservation needed)

Updated 9/14/2013


Friday evening, October 25th, 2013, anthropologist Terrence Deacon will deliver the 61st Alfred Korzybski Memorial Lecture, lecture titled “Aristotle’s Revenge: Final Cause and the Origins of Life,” at The Princeton Club in New York City. The lecture will be preceded by a dinner at The Princeton Club.

Saturday and Sunday, October 26th-27th, 2013, The Princeton Club will host a symposium titled “Language and Symbol Use in the Twenty-First Century” sponsored by the Institute of General Semantics.

About Terrence Deacon

Professor Deacon’s research has combined human evolutionary biology and neuroscience, with the aim of investigating the evolution of human cognition. His work extends from laboratory-based cellular-molecular neurobiology to the study of semiotic processes underlying animal and human communication, especially language. Many of these interests are explored in his 1997 book, The Symbolic Species: The Coevolution of Language and the Brain.

His neurobiological research is focused on determining the nature of the human divergence from typical primate brain anatomy, the cellular-molecular mechanisms producing this difference, and the correlations between these anatomical differences and special human cognitive abilities, particularly language. In pursuit of these questions he has used a variety of laboratory approaches including the tracing of axonal connections, quantitative analysis of regions of different species brains, and cross-species fetal neural transplantation. The goal is to identify elements of the developmental genetic mechanisms that distinguish human brains from other ape brains, to aid the study of the cognitive consequences of human brain evolution.

His theoretical interests include the study of evolution-like processes at many levels, including their role in embryonic development, neural signal processing, language change, and social processes, and how these different processes interact and depend on each other. Currently, his theoretical interests have focused on the problem of explaining emergent phenomena, such apparently unprecedented transitions as the origin of life, the evolution of language, and the generation of conscious experience by brains. This is fueled by a career-long interest in the ideas of the late 19th-century American philosopher Charles Sanders Peirce and his theory of semiosis. His new book, Incomplete Nature: How Mind Emerged from Matter, explores the relationship between thermodynamic, self-organizing, evolutionary and semiotic processes and provides a new technical conception of information that explains both its representational and normative properties.


Terrence Deacon Links

Incomplete Nature: Paperback | HardcoverKindle

Call for Papers

Updated 8/11/2013

Send papers, proposals, and inquiries on this year’s theme, “Language and Symbol Use in the Twenty-First Century” by August 31, 2013 September 20, 2013.

About General Semantics

General semantics is a popular, practical discipline that applies modern scientific thinking toward the solution of personal and professional problems. Through the application of general semantics ideas and principles, general semantics brings about clearer thinking, peaceful interaction, and greater sanity to one’s life. General semantics has served as the foundation for numerous approaches to human problems with its unique applications adapted from modern science.


Updated 10/13/2013


Updated 6/13/2013

Registration is now open.

To purchase an advance ticket for the dinner, please visit  Dinner is $80.00 per person.  Dinner is free for current IGS members who are paid up as of 10/25/2013, plus one guest.

Registration is not needed for the Alfred Korzybski Memorial Lecture or the weekend symposium.

For updates, follow us on Twitter at

Hotel Accommodations

The Princeton Club is located at 15 West 43rd Street between 5th & 6th Avenues in the Grand Central Station area of Midtown Manhattan ( A great number of hotels are in the vicinity. Click here for a selection of local hotels.

For information on the 65th Alfred Korzybski Memorial Lecture on the evening of October 27, 2017, click here.
For information on the two-day General Semantics Symposium on October 28-29, 2017, click here.
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