The Cummer Museum of Art & Gardens presents a panel discussion, “Perspectives on Empathy: Art, Religion, and Science,” on Tuesday, February 4, at 7:00 pm. The panel will be moderated by David S. Areford, Associate Professor of Art History at the University of Massachusetts Boston and guest curator of the exhibition The Art of Empathy: The Cummer Mother of Sorrows in Context (through February 16). Extending the exhibition’s themes, the panel will explore various ways of understanding empathy and its formation from different perspectives, including visual culture, religion, and science. Central to recent discussions of empathy are several basic questions: Is empathy an innate biological response? Is it the very essence of what makes us human? Or, is empathy something that we learn? If so, how do we learn to be empathetic? And in what ways does a society – its government, its religions, its artistic culture – foster empathy among its people?
Joining Professor Areford will be Scott Brown, Associate Professor of Art History at the University of North Florida; The Very Reverend Katherine B. Moorehead, Dean of St. John’s Cathedral and Dean of the Diocese of Florida; and Dan Richard, Associate Professor of Psychology at the University of North Florida.
The event will take place in the Hixon Auditorium. Free to the public; seating is limited, first come, first seated.