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60 Mindful Minutes

Sep 15, 2020

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Human development, which crosses psychology, biology, neuroscience and sociology, asks: why are we the way we are? This was one of the questions that drove four researchers to study thousands of people from birth to midlife in the US, Great Britain and New Zealand. In their new book, The Origins of You: How Childhood Shapes Later Life, these four leading psychologists share their findings so far. The result is unprecedented insight into what makes each of us who we are and the awareness that human development is not subject to ironclad laws but instead is a matter of possibilities and probabilities―multiple forces that together determine the direction a life will take.


Guest Bio

Professor Jay Belsky is the Robert M. and Natalie Reid Dorn Professor of Human Development at the University of California, Davis (2011-present). He obtained his Ph.D. in 1978 in Human Development and Family Studies from Cornell University. Professor Belsky is an internationally recognized expert in the field of child development and family studies. His areas of special expertise include effects of day care, parent-child relations and other developmental experiences and environmental exposures early in life on psychological and behavioral development, the transition to parenthood, the etiology of child maltreatment and the evolutionary basis of parent and child functioning.


Mentioned in this Episode

Guest’s website:


The Origins of You: How Childhood Shapes Later Life by Jay Belsky, Avshalom Caspi, Terrie E. Moffitt, Richie Poulton


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