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Science and Religion: A Very Short Introduction

Thomas Dixon

July 2008

ISBN: 9780199295517

168 pages
Paperback
174x111mm

Very Short Introductions

Price: £7.99

From the trial of Galileo through to today's controversy over the teaching of 'Intelligent Design' in schools, there has been a long history of conflict between science and religion. This balanced and thought-provoking account avoids polemic, to explore the key philosophical arguments on both sides of this fascinating and complex debate.

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Description

From the trial of Galileo through to today's controversy over the teaching of 'Intelligent Design' in schools, there has been a long history of conflict between science and religion. This balanced and thought-provoking account avoids polemic, to explore the key philosophical arguments on both sides of this fascinating and complex debate.

  • Unlike most books on the subject, this concise and accessible introduction stands back from the controversy to present an informative and even-handed account of what is really at stake.
  • Reveals how engagements between science and religion have historically involved harmony as well as conflict.
  • Explains philosophical arguments about realism, laws of nature, and miracles.
  • Illuminates modern debates about quantum physics, cosmology, neuroscience, and evolutionary ethics, asking about their political as well as their religious significance.
  • Examines historical episodes such as the Galileo affair, Charles Darwin's own religious and scientific odyssey, the Scopes 'Monkey Trial' of 1925, and the recent Dover Area School Board case.

About the Author(s)

Thomas Dixon, Professor of History, Queen Mary, University of London

Table of Contents

    1:What are science-religion debates really about?
    2:Galileo and the philosophy of science
    3:Does God act in nature?
    4:Darwin and evolution
    5:Creationism and Intelligent Design
    6:Mind and morality
    References and Further Reading

Reviews

"A rich introductory text...on the study of relations of science and religion." - R. P. Whaite, Metascience

"A marvellous book that should be required reading for dogmatic fundamentalists of every persuasion." - Patricia Fara, British Journal for the History of Science

"Dixon shows great skill in composing a book which combines coherence and clarity with a strong forward momentum... The interested reader need not hesitate." - Michael Fuller, The Expository Times

"Bracing initiation" - Observer.

"The relationship between science and religion, past and present, is much more varied and more interesting than the popular caricature of conflict. Thomas Dixon gives us the richer picture, and he does it with clarity and verve. This is an ideal introduction to a fascinating subject." - Peter Lipton. University of Cambridge

"Thomas Dixon has made a delightful contribution to this OUP series of Very Short Introductions." - Church Times