Michael Tomasello has been named the winner of the 2009 Hegel Prize, which is awarded by the German city of Stuttgart. The prize will be awarded to Tomasello at a ceremony on December 16, 2009. Jürgen Habermas will give the Laudatio.
Past winners of the Hegel prize include Jürgen Habermas, Hans-Georg Gadamer, Paul Ricoeur, Niklas Luhmann and Charles Taylor.
Michael Tomasello is an American developmental psychologist, and since 1998 co-director of the Max Planck Institute for Evolutionary Anthropology in Leipzig, Germany. He is educated at Duke University and University of Georgia, and has been professor of psychology at Emory University in Atlanta.
In a recent interview Axel Honneth (Frankfurt University) said, that Michael Tomasello's book "Origins of Human Communication" (MIT Press, 2008) was one of the most exiting books he had read in years. Also Jürgen Habermas has recommended Tomasello's latest book: "Michael Tomasello entwirft in seinem zweiten großen Werk eine faszinierende Naturgeschichte der menschlichen Kommunikation und stellt den ehrwürdigen Diskurs über den Ursprung der Sprache auf eine neue Basis."
In May 2006 Tomasello gave four lectures in Paris on the origins of human communication. Videos of the lectures are available here.