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When Science and Christianity Meet

This book, in language accessible to the general reader, investigates twelve of the most notorious, most interesting, and most instructive episodes involving the interaction between science and Christianity, aiming to tell each story in its historical specificity and local particularity.
Among the events treated in When Science and Christianity Meet are the Galileo affair, the seventeenth-century clockwork universe, Noah’s ark and flood in the development of natural history, struggles over Darwinian evolution, debates about the origin of the human species, and the Scopes trial. Readers will be introduced to St. Augustine, Roger Bacon, Pope Urban VIII, Isaac Newton, Pierre-Simon de Laplace, Carl Linnaeus, Charles Darwin, T. H. Huxley, Sigmund Freud, and many other participants in the historical drama of science and Christianity.
“Taken together, these papers provide a comprehensive survey of current thinking on key issues in the relationships between science and religion, pitched—as the editors intended—at just the right level to appeal to students.”—Peter J. Bowler, Isis

368 pages | 12 halftones, 47 line drawings | 6 x 9 | © 2003

History: European History, General History, History of Ideas

History of Science

Religion: Christianity, Religion and Society


"An outstanding volume. . . . The book can certainly be recommended as an appropriate text for undergraduates."

Science & Theology News

"Lindberg and Numbers, and their team, show how effective concentrating upon science and religion can be for getting scholarly history of science across. They write clearly, for ordinary readers, setting events in context, and supply formidable notes and bibliographies."

David Knight | Annals of Science

"The well-written essays in this book cover material from the Middle Ages through the post-Darwinian debates. . . . Most of the essays are clear, and the excellent, annotated bibliography mentions many important readings."

Margaret J. Osler | Journal of Interdisciplinary History

"With its concise, clearly written essays . . . including extensive endnotes that refer the reader to primary texts and important scholarly studies, this volume is a superb introduction to some of the most fascinating episodes in the long history of the relationship between science and Christianity."

James A. Wiseman | Catholic Historical Review

“Clarity is a chief feature of all the contributions, each of which . . . has been chosen to illustrate ‘the most notorious, most interesting or most instructive instances’ of the encounter between science and Christianity. Clear and engaging: it is a winning combination. It should find favour with students and see the book listed as an essential text in many course reading lists.”

Peter Broks | Endeavour

“With its illustrations, extended endnotes and annotated guide to further readings, the book reviews old questions in a thoroughly enlightening scholarly and interesting way.”

Carl S. Keener | Christian Century

Table of Contents

List of Illustrations
1. The Medieval Church Encounters the Classical Tradition: Saint Augustine, Roger Bacon, and the Handmaiden Metaphor
David C. Lindberg
2. Galileo, the Church, and the Cosmos
David C. Lindberg
3. Christianity and the Mechanistic Universe
William B. Ashworth Jr.
4. Matter, Force, and the Christian Worldview in the Enlightenment
Thomas H. Broman
5. Noah’s Flood, the Ark, and the Shaping of Early Modern Natural History
Janet Browne
6. Genesis and Geology Revisited: The Order of Nature and the Nature of Order in Nineteenth-Century Britain
Mott T. Greene
7. "Men before Adam!": American Debates over the Unity and Antiquity of Humanity
G. Blair Nelson
8. Re-placing Darwinism and Christianity
David N. Livingston
9. Science, Miracles, and the Prayer-Gauge Debate
Robert Bruce Mullin
10. Psychoanalysis and American Christianity, 1900-45
Jon H. Roberts
11. The Scopes Trial in History and Legend
Edward J. Larson
12. Science without God: Natural Laws and Christian Beliefs
Ronald L. Numbers
A Guide to Further Reading

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