Neil deGrasse Tyson & Richard Dawkins Ponder the Big Enchilada Questions of Science

When­ev­er you bring togeth­er Neil deGrasse Tyson and Richard Dawkins — one the pub­lic face of astro­physics, the oth­er the pub­lic face of biol­o­gy — you’re pret­ty much guar­an­teed a good crowd and a spir­it­ed con­ver­sa­tion. And that’s what stu­dents got in Sep­tem­ber 2010, when the sci­en­tists shared the stage at Howard Uni­ver­si­ty and con­sid­ered some big enchi­la­da ques­tions. For exam­ple: Why did our mind — from an evo­lu­tion­ary point of view — lead us to abstract math­e­mat­ics, which dri­ves the major dis­cov­er­ies in physics? What are the chances that we’ll dis­cov­er intel­li­gent life in the uni­verse, and, if they dis­cov­er us (rather than the oth­er way around), could we, as a civ­i­liza­tion, be in big trou­ble? Is nat­ur­al selec­tion oper­a­tive through­out the uni­verse and would aliens look any­thing like us? And why is The Blob a much bet­ter alien than ET? In short, they’re con­sid­er­ing just the kinds of mind-bend­ing ques­tions that col­lege stu­dents love to enter­tain — and hope­ful­ly you do to. Their con­ver­sa­tion runs about 50 min­utes and a Q&A fol­lows.

Relat­ed Con­tent:

Neil deGrasse Tyson Lists 8 (Free) Books Every Intel­li­gent Per­son Should Read

Some­thing from Noth­ing? Richard Dawkins and Lawrence Krauss Dis­cuss Cos­mol­o­gy, Ori­gins of Life & Reli­gion Before a Packed Crowd

Grow­ing Up in the Uni­verse: Richard Dawkins Presents Cap­ti­vat­ing Sci­ence Lec­tures for Kids (1991)

125 Great Sci­ence Videos: From Astron­o­my to Physics & Psy­chol­o­gy

30 Free Physics Cours­es from Top Uni­ver­si­ties (More Free Cours­es here)

by | Permalink | Comments (2) |

Sup­port Open Cul­ture

We’re hop­ing to rely on our loy­al read­ers rather than errat­ic ads. To sup­port Open Cul­ture’s edu­ca­tion­al mis­sion, please con­sid­er mak­ing a dona­tion. We accept Pay­Pal, Ven­mo (@openculture), Patre­on and Cryp­to! Please find all options here. We thank you!

Comments (2)
You can skip to the end and leave a response. Pinging is currently not allowed.

Leave a Reply

Open Culture was founded by Dan Colman.