Evolution in the Nineteenth Century



Saturday 17th March at St John’s College Library, Cambridge

A day of special events looking at evolution in the nineteenth century. All
events are free and all are welcome.

‘Evolution: The Race to Understanding’ (Old Library, 11am-5pm) – This
special exhibition charts the development of evolutionary thought through
the nineteenth century using a range of unique and rare printed books from
the Library’s special collections. The exhibition will showcase some of the
early theories that helped Charles Darwin and Alfred Russel Wallace to
formulate the case for natural selection, and will look at some of the
competing theories that led to fierce public and personal debates in the
nineteenth century and beyond.

‘Butler Among the Machines: Evolutionary Literature and Science in Europe,
1859-1902′ (Fisher Building, 14:00) – Dr Elinor Shaffer, who has just
finished co-editing volume three of ‘The Reception of Charles Darwin in
Europe’, discusses the European responses to Darwin that have shed new
light on the works of Samuel Butler.

‘Falling Foul of Natural Selection: Samuel Butler and the Darwins’ (Fisher
Building, 15:30) – Dr Alison Pearn, Associate Director of the Darwin
Correspondence Project, looks at the letters exchanged by Charles Darwin
and Samuel Butler and charts the disintegration of their relationship, from
a shared spirit of intellectual enquiry to a state of personal and public

Further details are given on the St John’s College website. All the
events are FREE and all are welcome. To attend any of the talks, please
pre-book via the Cambridge Science Festival website.