Brown University biology professor and PBS “NewsHour” adviser Kenneth R. Miller will deliver the Charles H. Townes Lecture on Faith and Reason Tuesday, March 29 at 7 p.m. in Younts Conference Center on the Furman University campus. A reception and book signing will follow his presentation.
Dr. Miller’s talk follows a noon luncheon on the same day in Younts Conference Center. His luncheon talk, “The Crisis: Does Science Really Matter in America Today?” is open to the public by reservation on a first-come, first-served basis. Reservations are required by March 22.
Miller’s evening talk, “Darwin, God, and Design: Does the Evolutionary Process Leave Room for Faith?” is free and open to the public. The lecture is part of Furman’s Cultural Life Program.
A cell biologist, Miller serves as an adviser on life sciences to “NewsHour,” a daily PBS television program on news and public affairs, and is a Fellow of the American Association for the Advancement of Science (AAAS).
Miller is co-author, with Joseph S. Levine, of a series of high school and college biology textbooks used by millions of students nationwide.
In 2005 he served as lead witness in the Kitzmiller v. Dover trial on evolution and intelligent design.
His popular book, Finding Darwin’s God: A Scientist’s Search for Common Ground between God and Evolution, addresses the scientific status of evolutionary theory and its relationship to religious views of nature. His latest book, Only a Theory: Evolution and the Battle for America’s Soul, addresses the continuing struggle over how evolution is to be understood in American society.
His honors include Presidential Citations from both the American Institute of Biological Science (2005) and the National Science Teachers Association (2015), the Public Service Award of the American Society for Cell Biology (2006), the Distinguished Service Award of the National Association of Biology teachers (2008), and the Public Engagement with Science award from AAAS (2009). In 2011, the Society for the Study of Evolution recognized Miller with the Stephen Jay Gould Prize for advancing the public understanding of evolution, and in 2014, Notre Dame University honored him with the presentation of the Laetare Medal.
For more information, contact the Furman University News and Media Relations Office at (864) 294-3107. To make a reservation for Miller’s lunchtime talk, 864.294.3777 or email RSVP@furman.edu.
About the Charles H. Townes Lecture Series on Faith & Reason
The Charles H. Townes Lecture Series in Faith & Reason has been funded through gifts from the John Templeton Foundation and Nobel Laureate, the late Charles H. Townes (1915-2015), Furman University Class of 1935. Townes held the rank of University Professor of Physics in the graduate school of the University of California-Berkeley and was a member of the Furman Board of Trustees.
A Greenville native, he was awarded the Nobel Prize in 1964 for his contributions to the development of the maser and laser. In 2005, he was awarded the Templeton Prize for his efforts to build bridges between science and religion. According to the Templeton website, Townes’ “seminal 1996 article, ‘The Convergence of Science and Religion,’ established him as a unique voice – among scientists, in particular – seeking commonality between the two disciplines.”
This lecture series named in his honor seeks to continue Townes’ spirit of inquiry and dialogue by inviting discussion of significant human questions that are addressed by both faith and reason.