The Johns Hopkins Gazette: February 19, 2001
February 19, 2001
VOL. 30, NO. 22


Philosopher Philip Kitcher Is Thalheimer Lecturer

Johns Hopkins Gazette Online Edition

Philip Kitcher will be the guest speaker for this year's Thalheimer Lectures, presented by the Philosophy Department. "Evolution, Altruism and Morality" will feature three lectures by Kitcher, a professor at Columbia University and one of the country's most distinguished philosophers of science.

"The Springs of Sympathy" will take place on Wednesday, Feb. 28; "Possibilities of Altruism" on Thursday, March 1; and "Genealogy of Morals" on Friday, March 2. Each will begin at 4:30 p.m. in the Garrett Room of the Milton S. Eisenhower Library and is free and open to the public.

Kitcher was born in London in 1947 and spent his early life in Eastbourne, Sussex, on the south coast of England. He studied mathematics at Christ's College Cambridge and earned his doctorate at Princeton. After working on the philosophy of mathematics early in his career, he began to write about issues in the philosophy of biology and, in general, philosophy of science.

He is currently examining the ethical and political constraints on scientific research, the evolution of altruism and morality and the apparent conflict between science and religion. His books include Abusing Science: The Case Against Creationism, Vaulting Ambition: Sociobiology and the Quest for Human Nature and The Lives to Come: The Genetic Revolution and Human Possibilities.

The Thalheimer Lectures were established in 1967 through a gift to the Philosophy Department from the Alvin and Fanny Blaustein Thalheimer Foundation to fund approximately every second year a lecture series that addresses philosophy or the relation of philosophy and other disciplines and issues.