Weber’s Shape of the Ape considers Darwin’s theory of evolution and man’s relationship to nature. In his talk Dr Conor Cunningham will trace the history of man’s humiliating relationship to nature from Copernicus to Newton, before discussing the impact of Darwin’s theory of evolution. More recently, Daniel Dennet’s characterisation of Darwin’s theory as a “dangerous idea”, sheds new light on The Origin of Species, likening it to a universal acid that eats through everything, leaving in its wake a post-apocalyptic landscape. Dr Cunningham will ask if Darwin’s idea could be pious rather than dangerous.
Conor Cunningham lectures at Nottingham University. He is the writer and presenter of the award-winning BBC2 documentary – Did Darwin Kill God? and author of the prize winning book – Darwin’s Pious Idea, which is being translated into many languages.