PSCI480: Science and Politics
This seminar examines the relationship of science and politics from early modernity to the present, and considers the probable course and character of that relationship in the foreseeable future. Topics to be considered include Galileo's conflict with the Church, the theory of evolution, Social Darwinism, and the origins and implications of nuclear weapons research. We will also examine a number of contemporary controversies at the intersection of science and politics, including genetic testing and therapy, intelligence testing and the IQ debates, global warming, and the debates surrounding the science and politics of AIDS. Issues such as the value neutrality of science, the politics of risk assessment, and the proper role of scientists in shaping policy also will be examined. Prerequisite: permission of instructor.