[ Back to EurekAlert! ] Public release date: 29-Oct-2011
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Contact: Jack Dunn
jack.dunn@bc.edu
Boston College

Science in the liberal arts university

Symposium at Boston College Oct. 29

CHESTNUT HILL, Mass. (October 29, 2011) A major public symposium at Boston College will bring together four nationally-noted, award-winning thought leaders for a day-long examination of the contributions of the physical and social sciences to a contemporary liberal arts university and to society.

'Science in the Liberal Arts University Why It Matters to Us All' - a free public symposium sponsored by BC's Institute for the Liberal Arts, takes place today at the University's main campus in Chestnut Hill, Mass.

Featured speakers include:

Brian Greene, Columbia University; physicist, string theoretician, author of several best-sellers including "The Elegant Universe"; deemed "the single best explainer of abstruse concepts in the world today," by the Washington Post; co-founder of The World Science Festival.

Elizabeth Kolbert,The New Yorker; author, journalist and science writer; her three-part series on global warming, "The Climate of Man," won the National Magazine Award for Public Interest, the American Association for the Advancement of Science Journalism Award and National Academies Communication Award.

Steven Pinker, Harvard University; experimental psychologist, author and researcher of visual cognition and the psychology of language; listed in Foreign Policy and Prospect magazine's "The World's Top 100 Public Intellectuals" and in Time magazine's "The 100 Most Influential People in the World Today."

Siva Vaidhyanathan, University of Virginia School of Law; cultural historian, writer and media scholar, fellow of the New York Institute for the Humanities and the Institute for the Future of the Book; at the forefront of the contemporary debate on copyright and intellectual property.

"Too often, we think of liberal arts education as synonymous with the humanities," said Mary Crane, Rattigan Professor of English and director of the Institute for the Liberal Arts. "The social sciences and sciences have crucial roles in liberal arts education today. This symposium presents speakers who will show how a basic understanding of scientific issues and methods is necessary if we are to understand our environment, our behavioral history, our access to information, and our place in the universe and who also rely on methods grounded in the humanities and social sciences to understand and communicate their topics."

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