Writers vs Scientists: who will tell us more about human nature in the
Wednesday 29 November 2006 21:30-22:15 (Radio 3)
More highlights from the Free Thinking Festival of Ideas for the Future.
The subject for discussion is Writers vs Scientists: who will tell us more about human nature in the decades to come?
Contributors include Carl Djerassi, the celebrated scientist who pioneered the pill, and Booker Prize winning novelist A S Byatt
Writers vs Scientists: who will tell us more about human nature in the future?. Duration 44 mins.
Listen to the programme
On Night Waves this evening Matthew Sweet introduces a debate recorded as part of Radio 3's Free Thinking festival which took place in Liverpool earlier this month.
The subject for tonight is Writers versus Scientists - who can tell us more about human nature in the decades to come? The battle between them has been waging since the sixteenth century when the divisions between the two cultures, which seem so natural today, were forged by the discoveries of the Renaissance.
But will it be art or science that ultimately provides the best tool for understanding our own natures? Is the nature of the human nature best understood through a peer-reviewed scientific paper or a novel? Will scientists or writers tell us more about what it means to be human or is it finally time for the two cultures to work together?
On the writer's side, we've the Booker prize-winning author of Possession, A S Byatt who is joined by Professor Philip Davis of Liverpool University. Both are equally passionate about the power and magic of language over the facts and findings of science. Facing them are Evolutionary Psychologist Dr Oliver Curry and Former celebrated chemist turned playwright, Carl Djerassi.
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