Science and its Publics Lecture Series

The Canadian Centre for Ethics in Public Affairs and the Situating Science Knowledge Cluster present:

Science and its Publics Lecture Series

A multi-part series examining the roles of the public in the translation and understanding of the knowledge of science

Part 2:




Thursday, November 25th, 2010 at 6:00 pm EST
Leacock 232
Leacock Building
McGill University
855 Sherbrooke Street West
Montreal, Quebec H3A 2T7

Live streamed here (Silverlight required)

All events are recorded and posted online weeks following the event



Dr. Jan Golinski, Professor of History and Humanities, University of New Hampshire presents a lecture on science, ethics and & he context of Mary Shelley’s Frankenstein. Shelley’s work drew attention to the dangers that could arise when a man of science attempted to harness the powers of nature in isolation from the normal moral bonds of society. In the decades before Shelley wrote her novel, the public sphere developed as a condition of scientific activity while sociability was recognized as an epistemic virtue.  Shelley’s work expressed anxieties about what could happen if these moral imperatives were ignored, anxieties that still resonate with the public today.


This event marks the second part of a multi-part national series on Science and its Publics created ce Strategic Knowledge Cluster, ( and the Canadian Centre for Ethics in Public Affairs, (


“Our economy, society and daily life is increasingly shaped by science and technology, yet the juicy details of those conversations are often only heard behind the closed doors of experts.”  That’s according to Situating Science Director, Dr. Gordon McOuat, co-creator of the national Science and Its Publics lecture series. McOuat says “by looking at how scientists communicate with one another, their objects and the outside world, we might spark a dialogue about public expertise, ethics and the communication of science and technology to the Canadian public.”


For more on the Lecture Series, see here:


This event is supported by the Making Publics Project (MaPS) (, headquartered at McGill University. Their MaPS team explores t of association that allowed people to connect with others in ways not founded in family, rank or vocation but rather founded in voluntary communities built on the shared interests, tastes, and desires of individuals. Members attempt to answer these questions: how did works of art and intellect and the practices of making and partaking in these works change the shape of early modern Europe (around 1500-1700)? And, how did these changes in early modernity influence the development of the modern world?