Monday, October 28, 2013

SSiMS talk on "Seeking Good Debate: Religion, Science, and Conflict in American Public Life"

by Salman Hameed

If you are in the area, join us for Wednesday lunch talk hosted by the Center for the Study of Science in Muslim Societies (SSiMS) and the School of Cognitive Science at Hampshire College. Here are the details:


Seeking Good Debate: Religion, Science, and Conflict in American Public Life
by 
Michael Evans
Neukom Fellow in the Neukom Institute for Computational Science and the Department of Film & Media Studies at Dartmouth College

Wednesday, October 30th, 2013
at Noon
Adele Simmons Hall, Hampshire College

Abstract: Why do science and religion seem to generate contentious public debate? In this talk I draw on computational linguistic analysis of over 10,000 newspaper articles, biographical research on key participants, and qualitative interviews with ordinary Americans to show that apparent conflicts in the public sphere over “science and religion” issues such as stem cell research, human origins, environmental policy, and the origins of sexuality actually result from a disconnection between the structure of elite debate in the American public sphere and the ideals of deliberative debate expected by ordinary Americans. I show how this insight helps explain several anomalies in current scholarship, such as why religious beliefs do not always impede support for science, why there is a gap between trust in science and trust in scientists, and why religious conservatives continue to dominate American public life. I also discuss the implications for science communication, particularly around issues where religion is involved.

Biographical statement: Michael Evans is an interdisciplinary scholar who uses computational and
qualitative methods to study contentious debates over science and technology issues. He has written about the social sources of public conflict over science and religion, how scientific elites shape interested publics, how narratives of continuity bolster scientific credibility, the role of religion in science communication, and the deliberative preferences of ordinary Americans, among other topics. He received his PhD in Sociology and Science Studies from the University of California, San Diego. Currently he is a Neukom Fellow in the Neukom Institute for Computational Science and the Department of Film & Media Studies at Dartmouth College. http://www.dartmouth.edu/~neukom/programs/neukom_fellows_14.html


In the Adele Simmons Hall (ASH) Lobby at Hampshire College.         
A light lunch will be available at noon.

1 comment:

DonE said...

Excellent! I hope Michael draws a good crowd at ASH.