Module Information

Module Identifier
HY38620
Module Title
Science, Religion and Magic
Academic Year
2017/2018
Co-ordinator
Semester
Semester 1
Reading List
Other Staff

Course Delivery

Delivery Type Delivery length / details
Lecture 20 x 1 Hour Lectures
Seminar 6 x 1 Hour Seminars
 

Assessment

Assessment Type Assessment length / details Proportion
Semester Assessment Essay 1 - 1 x 2,500 word essay  50%
Semester Assessment Essay 2 - 1 x 2,500 word essay  50%
Supplementary Assessment Essay 1 - 1 x 2,500 word supplementary (resit) essay  50%
Supplementary Assessment Essay 2 - 1 x 2,500 word supplementary (resit) essay  50%

Learning Outcomes

On successful completion of this module students should be able to:

Demonstrate a detailed and systematic understanding of the historiography relating to the relationship between science and other forms of belief.

Demonstrate a detailed and systematic understanding of the development of science from the early modern period in the context of its relationship to religion and other forms of popular belief.

Identify and critically evaluate a wide range of relevant primary and secondary material.

Demonstrate an ability to analyse and deploy relevant historical evidence to produce cogent and detailed arguments.

Aims

This module aims to introduce and examine the relationship between science, religion and other forms of popular belief from the early modern to the modern period. By investigating the relationship between different belief systems in this way the module will seek to introduce a number of issues in the contemporary cultural history of the sciences.

Brief description

This module aims to introduce and examine the relationship between science, religion and other forms of popular belief from the early modern to the modern period. By investigating the relationship between different belief systems in this way the module will seek to introduce a number of issues in the contemporary cultural history of the sciences.

We usually think of science as if it were set apart from other belief systems. We tend to think of the relationship between science and religion in particular as one of antagonism. This module will demonstrate the ways in which the relationship between science and other forms of belief is far more complex than this simple popular model supposes. For most of their recent histories, for example, science and religion, far from being poles apart, were inextricably connected. Some historians have even argued that particular forms of religious belief and organization were essential for the rise of modern science. Examining these connexions should cast new light on science and its cultures.

Content

Lectures:
1. Introduction
2. Magic and Nature
3. Godly Gentlemen
4. God and the Enlightenment
5. Natural Theology
6. Evolution and Progress
7. Radical Electricity
8. Mesmerising Culture
9. Looking for Ghosts
10. Spiritualism
11. Inside the Séance
12. Darwin, God and Reform
13. Damned Darwin
14. The Society for Psychical Research
15. Stage Magic
16. Other Worlds
17. Mysterious Forces
18. Conclusion

Seminars
1. Magical Thinking
2. Essay Preparation
3. Powers of Mind and Nature
4. Darwin
5. Playing with Spirits
6. Looking Back


Module Skills

Skills Type Skills details
Application of Number N/A
Communication Written communication skills will be developed through the coursework and written examination; skills in oral presentation will be developed in seminars but are not formally assessed.
Improving own Learning and Performance Students will be advised on how to improve research and communication skills through the individual tutorial providing feedback on submitted coursework.
Information Technology Students will be encouraged to locate suitable material on the web and to apply it appropriately to their own work. Students will also be expected to word-process their work and make use of Blackboard. These skills will not be formally assessed.
Personal Development and Career planning Students will develop a range of transferable skills, including time management and communication skills, which may help them identify their personal strengths as they consider potential career paths.
Problem solving Students are expected to note and respond to historical problems which arise as part of the study of this subject area and to undertake suitable research for seminars and essays.
Research skills Students will develop their research skills by reading a range of texts and evaluating their usefulness in preparation for the coursework and the written examination.
Subject Specific Skills Students will develop knowledge of sources and historical literature relating to debates surrounding the complex interplay between science, religion and magic in this period.
Team work Students will be expected to play an active part in group activities (e.g. short group presentations in seminars) and to learn to evaluate their own contribution to such activities.

Notes

This module is at CQFW Level 6