This course traces the history of science over the past 250 years. It explores how science and technology have shaped society politically, culturally, and economically, while reflecting on the evidence, methodology and assumption that have shaped our current theories, from natural selection, to climate change, to relativity.

Did Lavoisier discover oxygen? Why were physicists so attracted to spiritualism?  Should governments support science for its own sake? Why didn’t Darwin care about Mendel’s discoveries? Should we patent maize, mice, and medicines? Do cubism and relativity have a common origin? Did the Manhattan Project and the Internet make the Human Genome Possible? Why would anarchists attack observatories? Did wheat breeding and pesticides win the Cold War?

This course traces the history of science over the past 2250 years. It explores how science and technology have shaped society politically, culturally, and economically, while reflecting on the evidence, methodology and assumption that have shaped our current theories, from natural selection, to climate change, to relativity.