7.00pm to 8.30pm (every Thursday), Thursday 4 February
This event has already taken place
Science is one of the crucial cultural constructs of the modern world. It is now practiced across the globe in many varieties of society, but the origins of modern science were specific to Europe. This course will trace the development of science through its relationship with Christianity, a specifically European religion. Starting with the Christian accommodation and expansion of Hellenistic ideas about the natural world, we will examine how the relationships changed over time down to the present where there is a divergence of opinion on what it ought to be. Although iconic events such as the trial of Galileo and the discussion between Wilberforce and Huxley over Darwin’s theory of evolution will be covered, the main emphasis will be on the religious contingency of science.
The course will run every Thursday for six sessions from 7pm to 8.00pm, with a one week break in the middle. The dates are:
Frank James is Professor of the History of Science at the Royal Institution. His work includes studies of the relationship between science and Christianity, particularly in the work of Michael Faraday whose correspondence he edits.
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