|Semester and Year||SU 2009|
|Time||9:30 AM - 1:00 PM|
Science is full of human drama—persecution and inspiration, betrayal and tragedy—and theater’s ability to distill these tropes provides a powerful way to see how science informs and is informed by the wider culture. This course will explore classic plays built around scientific themes through both close readings of the scripts and a deep engagement with the technical, historical, and philosophical issues that motivate them. We will particularly pay attention to how science and scientists are represented in theater, and how that shapes the public understanding of science. We will read Michael Frayn’s Copenhagen alongside David Cassidy’s work on Heisenberg and the Nazi atomic bomb project; Brecht’s Galileo informed by Galileo’s own writings and records from the Roman Inquisition; Inherit the Wind with Edward Larson’s Pulitzer-prize winning account of the Scopes Trial; and Tom Stoppard’s Arcadia along with Newton’s Principia Mathematica and the Leibniz-Clarke correspondence.