Boyle Lecture 2009

misusing darwin: the materialist conspiracy in evolutionary biology

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lecturer: the revd canon professor keith ward DD FBA

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responder: the revd dr john polkinghorne Scd kbe frs

A Fellow of the Royal Society and a Fellow (and former President) of Queens’ College, Cambridge, Dr Polkinghorne's career as a Physicist began at Trinity College, Cambridge. He received his BA in 1952 (MA in 1956), was elected a Fellow of Trinity in 1954, and gained his PhD in 1955. In 1956 he was appointed a Lecturer in Mathematical Physics at Edinburgh: returning to Cambridge as a Lecturer in 1958, he was promoted to Reader in 1965 and Professor in 1968. In 1974 he was elected FRS and awarded the ScD by Cambridge. During this time he published many papers on theoretical elementary particle physics in learned journals and technical scientific books.

In 1979 he resigned his Professorship to train for the Anglican Priesthood, studying at Westcott House. He was ordained Deacon in 1981 and served as Curate in Cambridge (St Andrew’s, Chesterton 1981-82) and Bristol (St Michael and All Angels, Bedminster 1982-84) and was Vicar of Blean (near Canterbury) from 1984-86. He was Canon Theologian of Liverpool Cathedral 1994-2005 and Six Preacher, Canterbury Cathedral 1996-97. He was appointed an Honorary Professor of Physics at the University of Kent in 1984. In 1986 he was appointed Fellow, Dean and Chaplain at Trinity Hall, Cambridge, and in 1989 he was appointed President of Queens’ College, from which he retired in 1996. He was made KBE in 1997. He was awarded the Templeton Prize for Science and Religion in 2002 and also in that year became the Founding President of the International Society for Science and Religion. He is an Honorary Fellow of St Chad’s College, Durham, St Edmund’s College, and Trinity Hall, Cambridge. He is the author of many books including: Reason and Reality: The Relationship Between Science and Theology (1991); The Faith of a Physicist: Reflections of a Bottom-Up Thinker (1994); Serious Talk: Science and Religion in Dialogue (1995); Quantum Physics and Theology: an Unexpected Kinship (2007).

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