History and Philosophy Of Science | Science and Religion
X338 | 3059 | W. Dickson


How are science and religion related?  How were they related in the
past?  How are they related now?  How ought they be related?  Does
religion have anything to say to science?  Does it (and should it)
affect the way we do science, or the way that we interpret the
results of science?  Does science have anything to say to religion?
Does it (and should it) affect our religious beliefs, or our
interpretation of religious texts or doctrines?  We will address
these sorts of questions in this class.  We will begin with an
historical look at how science and religion were related at various
crucial points in the past, pausing to consider in somewhat more
detail the Galileo affair (more generally, the introduction of the
heliocentric model of the solar system)and the advent of Darwin's
theory of evolution.  Then we will move on to the present time,
focusing on the relationship between modern physics and religion,
and the relationship between the theory of evolution and religion.
We may also consider other issues (for example, the influence that
religion might have on ethics in science, or the relationship
between non-Western religions and science), depending on the
interest of students in the class.  No prior knowledge of biology or
physics is required.