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2013 Event Venues

The School of Science and Math Auditorium,
College of Charleston

Located at the intersection of Coming and Calhoun Streets, across from the College Library. The NSCB (New Science Center Building) Auditorium is Room 129.

Grimsley Hall, The Citadel
The Citadel’s Grimsley Hall is located at the north end of Summerall Field, on Jenkins Avenue.

Hawkins Living Learning Center is in Rivers Residence Hall, on College Promenade between the Sottile House and Student Health Services.

Maps of the CofC Campus, and The Citadel are available online.

Congregational Church

Circular Congregational Church is located at 150 Meeting Street.

Darwin Week In Charleston, Since 2001

2001 Darwin Week

2002 Darwin Week

2003 Darwin Week

2004 Darwin Week

2005 Darwin Week

2006 Darwin Week

2007 Darwin Week

2008 Darwin Week

2009 Darwin Week

2010 Darwin Week

2011 Darwin Week

2012 Darwin Week


Why Evolution Is True

Thursday, February 7 at 4:00 p.m.
CofC School of Sciences and Math Auditorium
Dr. Jerry Coyne

Amid the ongoing debate about creationism and intelligent design, the empirical evidence of evolution by natural selection has often been overlooked. That evidence is vast, varied, and magnificent, drawn from a broad spectrum of scientific inquiry ranging from genetics, anatomy, and molecular biology to paleontology and geology. Scientists today are finding species splitting in two, watching natural selection changing animals and plants before our eyes, and discovering fossil evidence that dinosaurs have sprouted feathers and fish have grown limbs. Join Dr. Coyne for a succinct and accessible summary of the facts supporting Darwinian evolution.
Refreshments to follow.
   ›› Sponsored by a Howard Hughes Medical Institute grant for science education.

Dr. Jerry A. Coyne is a Professor in the Department of Ecology and Evolution at the University of Chicago. He received his BS from William & Mary and his Ph.D. from Harvard. He has authored over 110 scientific papers and 80 other articles, reviews, and columns on population genetics and evolution, as well the scholarly book Speciation (Sinaur, with H. A. Orr). In 2009 he published the popular Why Evolution is True (Viking) and launched a blog of the same name.

2013 Darwin Week “Talks on Tap” —
Are Science and Faith Incompatible?

Thursday, February 7 at 7:30 p.m.
Circular Congregational Church
Dr. Jerry Coyne and Dr. Lea Schweitz

Can Science and Religious Faith be friends? Or are they fundamentally incompatible, for precisely the same reason that irrationality and rationality are incompatible? Is a constructive dialogue even possible between scientists and theologians? Or is monologue needed, where religion remains silent and science tells it that there is no evidence for its claims? Join Dr. Coyne and Dr. Schweitz for strikingly different perspectives on these thorny questions, moderated by Colin Kerr of The Journey (Presbyterian Student Association).

Dr. Lea F. Schweitz is Assistant Professor of Systematic Theology at the Lutheran School of Theology at Chicago, and Director of The Zygon Center for Religion and Science. She received her BA from Luther College and her MA and Ph.D. from the University of Chicago Divinity School. She is the author of over 40 papers and presentations on the relationship between science and Christianity.

Dr. Jerry A. Coyne is a professor the University of Chicago and author of the (2009) book, Why Evolution is True (more above).

Courting God:
Evolution and Creation in American Public Schools

Friday, February 8 at 3:00 p.m.
Hawkins Living Learning Center
Dr. John Y. Jones

For the past 90 years, laws regarding the teaching of evolution in public schools have themselves evolved a great deal. This talk will discuss some of those laws, the ways in which those laws have changed, and what the changes mean for today’s public school teachers.
   ›› Sponsored by the Honors College Faculty Lecture Series

Dr. John Y. Jones has an adjunct appointment in the College of Charleston Department of Teacher Education. His Ph.D. research at Penn State dealt with the (2005) intelligent design controversy in Kansas, and he has significant expertise with the landmark Kitzmiller vs. Dover trial as well.

MOVIE NIGHT Flock of Dodos Movie
Flock of Dodos: the evolution-intelligent design circus

Friday, February 8 at 6 p.m.
School of Science and Math Auditorium

A comic and controversial 2006 feature documentary, "Flock of Dodos: the evolution-intelligent design circus," is the first feature film to take an even-handed look at the intelligent design vs. evolution clash that appeared on the covers of Time and Newsweek in 2005. Filmmaker, scientist, surfer and evolutionary biologist Dr. Randy Olson explores the controversy over the teaching of evolution and the recently developed alternative, intelligent design. Olson, a native of Kansas, visits his home state and the community of Dover, Pennsylvania, which attempted to introduce intelligent design in science classes. Olson draws on basic aspects of evolution as metaphors, including the extinct dodo, which he suggests symbolizes what happens to those unable to change with their environment. Featured are seven top advocates for intelligent design.
   ›› Sponsored by the CofC Biology Club.


Corresponding with Darwin

Sunday, February 10 at 11:00 a.m.
Dr. Jeremy Rutledge

More and more religious people root themselves in a scientific understanding of the natural world. The Sunday morning teaching at Circular Church will consider Darwin’s story and our own as we affirm science and religion as partners in the existential search for truth and meaning.

The Rev. Dr. Jeremy Rutledge received his B.A. from Baylor University, his M.Div. from Baptist Theological Seminary at Richmond, and his D. Min. from Meadville Lombard Theological School, Chicago. He was for ten years the senior pastor of Covenant Church in Houston, Texas, before accepting the call to Circular Church in early 2012.

Zombie Ants and Disgusted Humans:
Behavior in a World of Parasites

Monday, February 11 at 4:00 p.m.
CofC School of Sciences and Math Auditorium
Dr. David Hughes

We, along with all animals, have evolved in a world thick with parasites. And the behaviors that have evolved as a consequence are strange indeed! “Zombie Biology” is a recently developing branch of behavioral ecology that examines how and why parasites precisely control the behavior of the hosts they infect. The study of “Disgust Biology,” behaviors on the part of a potential host to avoid becoming sick, is as old as Darwin himself. Dr. Hughes will examine some of the most complex results of natural selection, touching on the tenuous concept of free will in the parasitized brain.
Refreshments to follow.
   ›› Sponsored by the CofC Biology Department.

Dr. David P. Hughes is assistant professor of entomology and biology at Penn State University. He received his BSc (Hons) from the University of Glasgow and his DPhil from the University of Oxford. He has authored 40 scientific papers and edited books on the sociobiology of communication and host manipulation of parasites. His work on "zombie ants" has been featured in such popular outlets as the New York Times, MSNBC, Fox News, and Scientific American.

2/12/2013: Note that Dr. Shea was unable to travel due to bad weather and Dr. Dana Cope presented at 4 p.m. (the 6:30 p.m.Citadel event was cancelled).

The origin of bipedalism in the Hominidae, and Australopithicus afarensis as a transitional form

Tuesday, February 12 at 4:00 p.m.
CofC School of Sciences and Math Auditorium
Dr. Dana Cope, Department of Sociology and Anthropology, College of Charleston

Dr. Dana Cope did his undergraduate work at the University of Kansas, and his Ph.D. at the University of Texas, Austin. His research primarily focuses on the early Eocene evolution of the primates.

Myths of “Modern” Human Origins

Tuesday, February 12 at 4:00 p.m.
CofC School of Sciences and Math Auditorium
Dr. John Shea

For decades paleoanthropologists have distinguished recent "behaviorally-modern" humans from the earliest member of our species, Homo sapiens. This distinction reflects two longstanding myths in human origins research. The first myth is that the European Upper Paleolithic "revolution" 40,000 years ago marks a crucial turning point in prehistory. The second is there is a unifying trend to human evolution. Dr. Shea will challenge both of these myths.

Darwin's Birthday Celebration to follow!

   ›› Sponsored by Sigma Xi, the Scientific Research Society.

The Handaxe's Tale:
Stone Tools and Human Evolution

Tuesday, February 12 at 6:30 p.m.
117 Grimsley Hall, The Citadel
Dr. John Shea

Stone tools are the most durable record of human evolution, outnumbering human fossils from the last 2.5 million years by several orders of magnitude. But what do we know about them and how do we know it? This lecture introduces the basics of stone tool technology, surveying what archaeologists know from mechanics, from experiments, and studies of recent stone-tool-using people around the world. Sponsored by Sigma Xi, the Scientific Research Society.
Refreshments preceding in Room 204.

Dr. John J. Shea is a Professor of Anthropology at Stony Brook University, NY, and Research Associate of the Turkana Basin Institute in Kenya. He received his BA from Boston University and his Ph.D. from Harvard. His work on stone tools has been featured in more than a dozen television documentaries and in exhibits in the American Museum of Natural History and the Smithsonian.

Climate Change and Human Origins:
New Discoveries through Scientific Drilling in East Africa’s Great Rift Valley

Wednesday, February 13 at 4:00 p.m.
CofC School of Sciences and Math Auditorium
Dr. Chris Scholz

Refreshments to follow.
   ›› Sponsored by the CofC Geology Department.

Dr. Christopher A. Scholz is Professor of Earth Sciences at Syracuse University. His BA is from the University of Vermont, and his Ph.D. is from Duke. He is the author of over 50 scientific papers on tectonics and seismology. Since 2002 he has been the lead investigator on the Lake Malawi Scientific Drilling Project.