Upcoming Iowa events on evolution and intelligent design

It’s a new year, and it will be a busy one here in Iowa when it comes to evolutionary biology. I want to highlight two upcoming events: Iowa City’s first annual Darwin Day celebration featuring a lecture by Massimo Pigliucci, and an upcoming symposium on evolution and intelligent design, featuring John Haught and Wesley Elsberry. These events will be held in February and March, respectively; more information on both of them after the jump.

Event Number One: Iowa City’s First Annual Darwin Day Celebration

About: A celebration of science in general and biology specifically, with events aimed at the general public.

When: February 13-14, 2007

Where: Iowa City, various locations

The lineup:

Tuesday, Feb 13th. 7PM: Live from Prairie Lights, “the best of current literature on public radio.” Reading by Massimo Pigliucci.

Wednesday, Feb 14th.

3:30pm Biology Seminar, 101 BBE Kollros Auditorium, “Making sense of evolution: the conceptual foundations of evolutionary biology”

5:30pm Public Lecture, C20 Pomerantz Center “Is evolution a logical fallacy? (No…)”

6:30pm Reception with cake, hors d’oeuvres and drinks, Iowa Hall

The cost:

Free and open to the public, but we’re doing some fundraising. First, one of our biology professors, John Logsdon, has volunteered to chop off his flowing mane and donate the hair to Locks of Love; we’re soliciting donations to raise $3000 to make this happen.

We also have a CafePress store with “Iowa loves Darwin” shirts, mugs, bumper stickers, etc. And of course, we’re accepting simple donations as well; you can find more information at the website.

Event Number Two: March Symposium on Evolution and Intelligent Design: Defining Terms, Clarifying the Conflict, and Charting a Way Forward

About: An interactive symposium discussing the basics of evolutionary theory and intelligent design, with emphasis on the science, religion, and politics involved. Aimed at school teachers, administrators, and interested laymen who want to better understand the underlying issues. (No, this won’t be ID-friendly by any means…)

When: March 16-17, 2007

Where: Wartburg College in Waverly, Iowa

The lineup (full schedule can be found here)

Friday, March 16:

6:30-8:30: Registration, social hour, presentation by Wesley Elsberry of the National Center for Science Education.

Saturday, March 17:

8:30: Talk by theologian John Haught of Georgetown University.

10:00-3:00, workshops and lunch.

3:15: Talk by Jennifer Miller, biology teacher at Dover High School, Pennsylvania.

4:00-5:00: panel discussion and summation.

Cost: $30 pre-pay (or $20 for lectures only, no snacks/meals), $40 at the door. However, scholarships are available to educators and administrators to attend; more information can be found here.

Hope to see some Iowa readers in attendance at one (or both) of these events!

5 Replies to “Upcoming Iowa events on evolution and intelligent design”

  1. “Darwinism has acquired all the trappings of a bona fide full-fledged religion — a founding prophet, a priesthood, dogma, anathema, excommunication, and now a holy day, Darwinmas.”

    Yeah, right, man. In other words, you’re saying the word “religion” doesn’t mean anything. Besides, there is no “-ism.” There is evidence which support a scientific hypothesis or there isn’t.


  2. I suppose someone might see a superficial resemblance to a religion, but there are at least a couple of large differences.

    While Darwin is certainly respected, no one worships to him, prays to him, or considers him to be a superior being with special powers, not even the power of prophecy. Darwin did not prophesy, he made predictions based on his observations. This is far different from being granted knowledge of the future by a god.

    And, as has been repeatedly pointed out by certain religious people, there is no god in evolution, so how could it even be a religion in the first place?

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