Senior Fellow, The Child Trauma Academy, Houston; Adjunct Professor, Department of Psychiatry and Behavioral Sciences, Fienberg School of Medicine, Northwestern University; Author, The Boy Who Was Raised as a Dog and Born for Love
Born for Love: Why Empathy is Essential, and Endangered
From birth, when babies’ fingers instinctively cling to those of adults, their bodies and brains seek an intimate connection, a bond made possible by empathy—the ability to love and to share the feelings of others. In this presentation, Bruce D. Perry, M.D., Ph.D., Senior Fellow at The Child Trauma Academy in Houston and adjunct Professor in the Department of Psychiatry and Behavioral Sciences at the Feinberg School of Medicine at Northwestern University, and one of the world’s leading authorities on the effects of trauma on children’s mental health, will discuss cutting-edge scientific studies and historical examples to explain how empathy develops, why it is essential for our development into healthy adults, and how it is threatened in the modern world. Further, Dr. Perry will address how compassion underlies the qualities that make society work—trust, altruism, collaboration, love, charity—and how difficulties related to empathy are key factors in social problems, mental illness, and even physical health. He will present the ways in which recent changes in technology, child- rearing practices, education, and lifestyles affect a child’s understanding of human contact and deep relationships—the essential foundation for empathy and a caring, healthy society. He will also discuss practical ideas for combating the negative influences of modern life and fostering positive social change. Dr. Perry is the author of the bestselling book The Boy Who Was Raised as a Dog and Born for Love: Why Empathy is Essential and Endangered.
NOTE: BONUS EVENT! Friday, February 13, 2015, Addressing Effects of Trauma in Mental Health and Education, 9:30 AM, New Trier High School, Northfield Campus, Cornog Auditorium, 7 Happ Rd., Northfield. The development of a young child is profoundly influenced by experience. Experiences shape the organization of the brain that, in turn, influences the emotional, social, cognitive and physiological activities. Dr. Perry will provide an overview of key principles of neurodevelopment crucial for understanding the role of experience in defining functional and physical organization of the brain. Additionally, the session will provide an overview of the key functions of the brain, outline the hierarchy of brain development, and provide neurodevelopmental links to key functions of the brain and key times of development. Dr. Perry will outline the clinical and educational implications of a neurodevelopmental approach to child maltreatment.