Unnatural: The Heretical Idea of Making People

Tuesday 8 February 7.00pm–8.30pm

Speaker: Philip Ball

 Philip Ball delves beneath the surface of the cultural history of ‘anthropoeia’ – the creation of artificial people – to explore what it tells us about our views on life, humanity, creativity and technology, and the soul. He suggests that, from the legendary inventor Daedalus to Goethe’s tragic Faust and the automata-making magicians of E.T.A Hoffmann, the old tales and myths are alive and well, subtly manipulating the current debates about assisted conception, embryo research and human cloning, which have at last made the fantasy of ‘making people’ into some kind of reality.

 Admission: Tickets cost £10, £7 concessions, £5 Ri members. You can book tickets online at www.rigb.org

 Venue: The Royal Institution, 21 Albemarle Street, London W1S 4BS