The Royal Institution
Frankenstein and its legacy
Tuesday 23 January, 7.00pm – 8.30pm
Frankenstein is still relevant today as it was 200 years ago, and Shelley’s creature lives on, as an embodiment of society’s anxieties about where science is taking us. Join Philip Ball, Miranda Seymour, Frank James and Angela Wright as they discuss the context in which the book was written and how the tale has become a popular myth with a life of its own, independent of Shelley’s original text.
Poetry and science at the Royal Institution
Tuesday 6 February, 7.00pm – 8.30pm
Literary historian Gregory Tate asks why a surprising number of scientists write poetry. Offering a rare chance to see manuscripts from the Royal Institution’s archives, Tate’s talk will explore the poetry of two nineteenth-century scientists who worked at the Royal Institution: the pioneering chemist Humphry Davy, and the Victorian physicist and science communicator John Tyndall. The archives reveal that, as they made their discoveries in the Royal Institution’s laboratory and lectured in its theatre, Davy and Tyndall also devoted much of their time to the writing of poems. Tate will show how poetry contributed to the development of ground-breaking scientific theories in the nineteenth century, and will consider whether it still has a part to play in scientific research today.
The ascent of John Tyndall
Thursday 22 March, 7.00pm – 8.30pm
John Tyndall was a leading scientific figure in Victorian Britain. Among much else, he established the physical basis of the greenhouse effect, and explained why the sky is blue. To celebrate the launch of his new biography, Sir Roland Jackson will explore the scientific achievements and impact of this colourful physicist, communicator, and mountaineer, who ascended from humble beginnings to the heart of Victorian society. If you have any questions or if you would like to discuss this further, please let me know.
Further information and book your place: http://www.rigb.org/whats-on