Fisher explains crazy little thing called love

Biology is destiny?

If, like millions of people, you scratch your head in amazement when an Eliot Spitzer-type scandal becomes public, perhaps Helen Fisher, Ph.D., can enlighten you. The Rutgers University anthropologist will give the Assembly Series/Women’s Society of Washington University talk at 11 a.m. Wednesday, April 16, in Graham Chapel. Her address, “The Drive to Love: The Biology, Evolution and Future of Romantic Love,” is free and open to the public. This is the final lecture of the 2007-08 Assembly Series.

Her research draws on both evolutionary behavior and brain chemistry to explain that love, sex, romance and marriage are hard-wired into human beings. Fisher believes that romantic love is not just a feeling; it is, rather, a drive so powerful it overtakes all others and causes irrational behavior akin to addiction.

Fisher is widely considered to be the foremost expert on the science and evolution of romantic love and has written four books: “Why We Love: The Nature and Chemistry of Romantic Love;” “Anatomy of Love: The Natural History of Monogamy, Adultery, and Divorce,” which was selected as a “Notable Book of 1992” by the New York Times Book Review; “The Sex Contract: The Evolution of Human Behavior;” and “The First Sex: The Natural Talents of Women and How They Are Changing the World,” which was named a “Notable Book of 1999” by the New York Times Book Review.

She also is the chief scientific advisor to and is working on the development of its “chemistry profile” — a personality assessment and matching system for online dating.

Fisher earned a bachelor’s degree from New York University, and master’s and doctoral degrees from the University of Colorado, Boulder.

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