Workshop 4: debates
king's college London , December 2018
This workshop will examine how the public discussion of palaeontological ideas has connected with wider debates on scientific, social and cultural issues, ranging from evolution, ‘progress,’ nature, biodiversity, and spectacle. It will interrogate the wider ideological and cultural traditions around the public discussion of palaeontological research, and how old stereotypes and new narratives have developed.
Particularly important questions will be:
- Which cultural and ideological positions have historically used palaeontological research and narratives? How has this changed and shifted over time?
- How long-standing have particular cultural stereotypes been in the presentation of life’s history, particularly those based on ‘progress’ and ‘improvement’? Why have these been so difficult to overcome?
- How can palaeontology interact with current issues and concerns over conservation, biodiversity, and environmental change? How effective can this be? Is this even desirable?