Anthropologist Agustín Fuentes talks evolution and creativity on With a Side of Knowledge podcast

Author: Ted Fox

cover art for With a Side of Knowledge podcast, featuring a plated Notre Dame waffle in the background behind the show's name and two dialogue bubbles in the foreground

With a Side of Knowledge is a podcast produced by the Office of the Provost at the University of Notre Dame. It brings listeners informal interviews with fascinating scholars and professionals from both Notre Dame and elsewhere that take place over brunch.

The eighth episode of season two, “On Evolution and Defining Creativity,” was released Thursday, Feb. 7, and features Agustín Fuentes, Rev. Edmund P. Joyce, C.S.C., Professor of Anthropology and chair of the Department of Anthropology at Notre Dame.

Fuentes has published more than 150 peer-reviewed articles and chapters and authored or edited 20 books as well as a three-volume encyclopedia. He and host Ted Fox focused in large part on one of his most recent books, The Creative Spark: How Imagination Made Humans Exceptional, published by Dutton Books in 2017.

In a conversation covering millions of years of human history, Fuentes unpacked myths about the differences between men and women, about what race is and isn’t, and about whether we’re inherently violent creatures—all the while showing why he says humans’ incredible capacity for creativity is the defining element in our evolutionary journey.

You can visit to learn more about the podcast, which is available through iTunes/Apple Podcasts, Google Play, Spotify, and Stitcher or by searching “With a Side of Knowledge” in your favorite podcast app.

You can also listen to the episode with Fuentes using the player below.