One Nation, United? Science, Religion, and American Public Opinion

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17th July 2017

One Nation, United? Science, Religion, and American Public Opinion

By Shiri Noy and Timothy L. O’Brien Debates about science and religion—whether they conflict and how they factor into public opinion, policies, and politics—are of longstanding interest to social scientists. Research in this area often examines how those in elite positions use science and religion to justify competing claims. But, more generally how do members of the public incorporate science and religion into their worldviews?…

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21st February 2017

Podcast: Religion, Science and Evolutionary Theory

***This podcast first appeared on The Religious Studies Project on 30 January 2017*** Science and evolution in Muslim societies is a complicated topic. Among members of the public, what does evolution mean? Is there one ‘Muslim view’ on evolution, or are there a great variety of views on evolution in Muslim majority contexts? In this podcast for The Religious Studies Project SRES's Dr Stephen Jones interviews Dr…

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7th February 2017

Spiritualism, religion and mathematics in the Victorian period

Late nineteenth-century British culture was somewhat preoccupied with the presence of ghosts. Conjuring spirits at séances was a popular pastime, with the exploits of some spiritualists, such as the medium Henry Slade, the fodder of press gossip and celebrity. Communicating with spirits became of deep interest to some scientists, including the physicist William Crookes and the naturalist Alfred Russel Wallace, who debated their peers about aberrant physical…

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22nd November 2016

Henry Neville Hutchinson: Dinosaurs, Evolution, and Faith

By Richard Fallon No one could accuse the Reverend Henry Neville Hutchinson (1856-1927) of being close-minded. He belonged to the Geological Society, the Anthropological Institute, the Royal Geographical Society, the Zoological Society, the Folk-Lore Society, the Palæontographical Society, and the Hampstead Scientific Society. He wrote a great number of popular science books, especially during a prolific period in the 1890s. He sculpted…

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25th October 2016

Old Categories, New Territories, and Future Directions: A Response to Bernard Lightman

By Peter Harrison A note from the editor: In a previous article on this site, historian of science Bernard Lightman offered a reflection on the new work of Peter Harrison. Harrison’s book, The Territories of Science and Religion, seeks to outline how conceptions of science and religion have changed throughout history, and details the inadequacy of projecting our present categories onto the past. In his reflection, Lightman raised four points…

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15th March 2016

Reimagining both the peg and the hole in the conversation between Christianity and science

Have you noticed that within many of the current leading classifications of the religion-science relationship (such as those proposed by Ian Barbour, Willem Drees, Philip Hefner, Ted Peters, or John Haught), there is an implicit or explicit goal within the author’s classification? For some, it could be demonstrating the plausibility of a deity. For others, it could be upholding the relevance of Christianity, or the…

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2nd February 2016

Talking about science, religion and oneself

Joseph Farman: "Well I mean as Scouts one went to church [...] I don’t think I ever found it very attractive and [...] when you sort of kept saying, ‘You use these three letters together, g-o-d, and I haven’t yet fathomed out what on Earth you mean by it' and then they just say, ‘Well forget all about that, you know, it will come, it will come.’ [Laughs] To which the answer…

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8th December 2015

Where is the Evidence? Privileging Science over Religion

When I examine comment sections online in response to stories about religion in Canada, remarks almost inevitably spiral into a religion versus science debate. In my book, The Meaning of Sunday: The Practice of Belief in a Secular Age – based on ninety interviews with those in Canada who identify with a Christian group and attend church weekly (active affiliates), those who identify as Christian and attend services mainly…

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22nd June 2015

Do we still have faith in science? Progress, the Pope and belief in things we can’t see

‘What has become clear to me in recent years is that the old dream of progress, which used to be assumed, is being replaced in popular culture by visions of disaster, ecological catastrophe in particular’. So said Robert Bellah, one of the twentieth century’s most accomplished scholars of religion, in 2008. His words have seemed apt following the coverage of Pope Francis’s encyclical on the environment.

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