Lending Reason to the Science-Religion Debate

Karl Giberson, professor of science and religion, published a book called Saving Darwin that lays out the history behind an age-old question: Is it possible to believe in God and evolution at the same time?

Professor Giberson has written or co-authored 9 books, and contributed to many edited volumes. 
 His books include:

 

  • Worlds Apart: The Unholy War Between Science and Religion (1993, Beacon Hill); Species of Origins: America's Search for a Creation Story (2002, Rowman & Littlefield, with Don Yerxa);
  • Oracles of Science: Celebrity Scientists Versus God and Religion (2007, Oxford University Press, with the late Mariano Artigas);
  • Saving Darwin: How to Be a Christian and Believe in Evolution (2008, HarperOne), which the Washington Post called "One of the best books of 2008";
  • The Language of Faith and Science: Straight Answers to Genuine Questions (2011, InterVarsity, with Francis Collins);
  • Quantum Leap: How John Polkinghorne Found God in Science and Religion (2011, Lion Hudson, with Dean Nelson);
  • The Anointed: Evangelical Truth in a Secular Age (September, 2011, with Randall Stephens), published under Harvard University Press's Belknap imprint;
  • The Wonder of the Universe: Hints of God in a Fine-Tuned World (2012, InterVarsity Press); 
  • Seven Glorious Days: A Scientist Retells the Genesis Creation Story (2012, Paraclete Press). His tenth book, due out in 2014 from Beacon, explores the historical controversies that have surrounded Adam & Eve, especially the challenges posed by Darwin’s theory of evolution.

Karl W. Giberson

329 Whiting Street
Hingham, MA 02170
gibersok@gmail.com
www.karlgiberson.com

My professional life has combined college teaching, writing, managing and editing publications, and running academic projects, in roughly equal proportions. This cv contains a representative sampling from these areas.

Recent/Current Professional Activities and Positions

2012-present Adjunct Professor, Stonehill College

2011-2012 Director of the Writer’s Workshop, Gordon College

1984-2011 Professor of Physics/General Education, Eastern Nazarene College

2009-2011 Vice-president and President of the BioLogos Foundation

1992-2002 Director, General Science Program, Eastern Nazarene College

2009-2011 Director of the Honors Program, Eastern Nazarene College

2008-2010 Program Director, Venice School on Science and Religion

2000-2006 Editor, Science & Theology News

2003-2006 Editor-in-Chief Science & Spirit

2008-2010 Editor-in-Chief, Science & Religion Today

1998-present Contributing Editor, Books & Culture

2009-present Blogger, Huffington Post

Education

Rice University: Ph.D. Physics, 1984. M.A. Physics, 1982.

Oxford University: Summer science & religion program, 1999-2001

Eastern Nazarene College: . B.S. Physics/Math; B.A.Philosophy, 1979.

Books Published (5 of 9)

The Anointed: Evangelical Truth in a Secular Age (with Randall Stephens, Belknap/Harvard University Press, 2011).

The Language of Science & Faith (with Francis Collins, InterVarsity Press, 2011). Also published in Korean.

Saving Darwin (HarperOne, 2008) Washington Post’s “One of the Best Books of 2008.”

The Oracles of Science: Celebrity Scientists Versus God and Religion (with Mariano Artigas, Oxford University Press, 2007). Also published in Italian, Polish, and Spanish.

Species of Origins: America’s Search for a Creation Story (with Don Yerxa, Rowman & Littlefield, 2002). Also published in Polish.

Physics Research Background

Eastern Nazarene College: 1984-1988. Research with undergraduates on nitrogen lasers and dye lasers. Since 1993 my primary research focus has been the history, science, and sociology of the creation-evolution controversy in America.

Rice University: 1979-1984: Doctoral research involved development of tunable lasers in experiments involving the optical pumping of noble gases. Experience included dye, gas, and solid state lasers, and a variety of atomic beam configurations. Developed novel intracavity modulation technique to stabilize the transverse optical pumping of atomic beams.

Dartmouth College—Summer, 1978: Low Temperature physics

Courses taught (Eastern Nazarene College and Gordon College)

Critical Thinking & Logic, Writing Workshops, Introduction to Philosophy, Contemporary Questions Honors Seminar, History of Science and Religion, Astronomy, Issues in Science & Religion, Epoch Making Events in Science Applied Mechanics, Intermediate Mechanics, Modern Physics, Quantum Mechanics, Electricity and Magnetism.

Recognitions

Writing: Saving Darwin recognized by Washington Post Book World as a “Best Book of 2008.” Other books translated into Spanish, Italian, Polish, Korean. Essay on the origins controversy selected for inclusion in the freshman reader: What Matters in America. Invited speaker, “Writers by the Sea” conference in San Diego.

Rice University: Awarded competitive Rice Fellowship, elected to Sigma Xi research society, doctoral thesis received Wilson award for best dissertation.

Eastern Nazarene College: Outstanding Teacher Award, 1995. Professional Achievement Awards, 1998, 2002, 2006, 2009. External award for “Outstanding Course in Science & Religion,” 1996.

Grants (partial list of awards from the Templeton Foundation)

$1.4 million to fund editorial operations of Science & Spirit magazine (2005-2007).

$45,000 to support writing of The Oracles of Science (2005).

$378,000 run international conference on “Open Theology & Science” (2007-2008).

$78,000 to support writing and promotion of Saving Darwin.

$75,000 to explore ways for academics to write for popular media outlets.

Physics Research Publications (5 of 10 are listed)

"Optical Pumping With a Frequency Modulated Multimode Dye Laser", by K. Giberson et al, Optics Letters, (1985).

"Orientation of Ar(3p2) Atoms by Laser Optical Pumping", by K. Giberson et al, Review of Scientific Instruments (8), (1984).

"Optical Pumping of a Ne(3p2) Atom Beam with a Multimode Laser", by K. Giberson et al, Optics Communications 52 (103), (1984).

"Intense Source of Spin-Polarized Electrons Using Laser-Induced Optical Pumping", by L. Gray, K. Giberson et al, Review of Scientific Instruments 54 (3), (1983).

"Measurement of the Spin Polarization of an Optically Pumped Ensemble of He (23S) Atoms", by C. Cheng, K. Giberson et al, Review of Scientific Instruments 53 (9), (1982).

Sample Reference essays for Salem Press Surveys of Science

“Scientists Find Strong Evidence for the Big Bang,” 1993 (in Magill's Survey of Science: Great Events from Physics).

“Bosons,” Salem Press, 1991 (in Magill's Survey of Science: Great Ideas from Physics).

“United States Outer Space Treaty,” Salem Press, 1989 (in Magill's Survey of Science: Space Exploration Series). Co- co-authored with undergraduate Todd Crofford.

Review Essays (4 of 18)

“George Bailey's Wonderful Universes.” Books & Culture, May-June 2011.

“No Science, Please:We're Evangelical.” Books & Culture. (Sept/Oct, 2008)

“The Warden of Time and Space: Isaac Newton, Genius, Heretic, SOB.” Three part series on Newton and his biographers. Books & Culture, Sept/Oct 2001--Jan/Feb 2002.

“Mr. Uncertainty: The Life and Times of Werner Heisenberg.” Two part series, Books & Culture March/April and May/June, 2000.

Sample Book Reviews

Evolution of God by Robert Wright. Quarterly Review of Biology, (June, 2010).

What Science Knows and How it Knows It by James Franklin. Weekly Standard, (March 8, 2010).

Before Scopes: Evangelicalism, Education, and Evolution in Tennessee, 1870-182, by Charles Israel, Journal of Southern Religion (2006).

Endless Forms Most Beautiful by Sean Carroll. Discover Magazine. (June 2005).

Modern Physics and Ancient Faith, by Stephen Barr. Physics in Perspective (2004).

Published Interviews (4 of 12)

“Faith in the Halls of Science: A Conversation with Ian Hutchinson” (with undergraduate Dana Peck), Perspectives on Science and Faith, Sept. 2008.

“Finding Darwin’s God: A Conversation with Ken Miller.” Books & Culture (Jan-Feb, 2004).

“God and Time Machines: A Conversation with Paul Davies.” Books & Culture Mar-Apr 2002.

“The Universe has a Mind of its Own: A Conversation with Freeman Dyson.” Books & Culture, Nov/Dec 2000.

Educational Publications

“Evolution in the Public Schools: A Case Study Analysis” (with undergraduate Tim Johnson). Perspectives on Science and Faith, December 2002.

“Searching for ET with Middle School Students,” The Science Teacher, November, 1997. (with undergraduate Laura Brown.)

“Imposing Science on the Liberal Arts Student” (co-authored with Kathy Frederich), Perspectives on Science & Faith (June 1996).

Pieces in Great Ideas for Teaching Astronomy, 1989, 1993. Great Ideas for Teaching Physics, 1991.

Miscellaneous Sample Short Pieces

“Modern Faith: Harmony of the Spheres,” Thedaily.com, Nov. 13, 2011.

“The Evangelical Rejection of Reason”, Oct. 18, 2011, NY Times. (with Randall Stephens.)

“Growing Up in Bachmann’s World. FrumForum, Oct 3, 2011. Reprinted in The Guardian.

“Jesus would believe in evolution and so should you,” CNN.com, April 10, 2011.

“Atheists, it’s time to play well with others,” USA Today, May 24, 2010.

“What’s Wrong with Science as Religion?” Salon.com, July 31, 2008.

Miscellaneous Professional Activities

Lecturer at Venice School May 2010 (with Michael Ruse, Frans De Waal, Simon Conway Morris, and Fr. Josef Zycinski.)

Keynote: “The Oracles of Science” at Metanexus 2009 international Science and Religion meeting.

Invited speaker at Vatican conference on Science & Philosophy, April 2006.

Director of the Erice, Sicily, workshop on science and religion, 2003.

Guest on WBZ television program “Higher Ground.” 2001

Invited lectures have been given at Azusa Pacific University, Biola University, Calvin College, Center for Theology and the Natural Sciences, College of Idaho, Eastern College, Gordon College, Greenville College, Hastings College, Huntington College, Indiana Wesleyan University, Massachusetts Institute of Technology, Messiah College, Methodist University, Northwest Nazarene University, Oxford University, Point Loma Nazarene

University, Stonehill College, Thomas More Institute (London), Westmont College, Wheaton College, Xavier University, University of Navarre, University of Washington.

NOTE: I published dozens of book reviews, interviews, editorials, and other pieces in Science & Theology News and Science & Spirit but, as I was the editor of those publications, I have not listed them. I have also not listed very many of my on-line debates, blogs and op-eds on other websites, including Huffington Post, The BioLogos Forum, and scienceandreligiontoday.

Personal

55 years old; married, 2 children; enjoy teaching undergraduates, reading, writing, baseball, politics, being outdoors.

Biography

Karl Giberson is a science-and-religion scholar, speaker, and writer. He has lectured at the Vatican, Oxford University, London's Thomas Moore Institute, the Ettore Majorana center in Sicily, the Venice Institute of Arts and Letters, the University of Navarre in Spain, a conference in Brazil, and at many American venues, including MIT, Brigham Young, Xavier, Columbia University, University of Colorado, the Harvard Club of New York and others.

His books have been translated into Spanish, Polish, Italian, and Romanian and he has been featured in magazines from Spain and Brazil, as well as many American publications, including USA Today, Salon.com, Newsweek, and the Boston Globe. He has appeared on NPR's Talk of the Nation, the Milton Rosenberg Show and other radio programs, and been featured in the NY Times "bloggingheads" video series with Robert Wright as well as WBZ's Higher Ground program. He has published hundreds of articles, reviews, and essays, both technical and popular, in a broad cross-section of media outlets including the NY Times, USA Today, the Guardian, the Daily Beast, and CNN.com.

He has written, co-authored, or edited 11 books, and contributed to many edited volumes.  His books include: Worlds Apart: The Unholy War Between Science and Religion (1993, Beacon Hill); Species of Origins: America's Search for a Creation Story (2002, Rowman & Littlefield, with Don Yerxa); Oracles of Science: Celebrity Scientists Versus God and Religion (2007, Oxford University Press, with the late Mariano Artigas); Saving Darwin: How to Be a Christian and Believe in Evolution (2008, HarperOne), which the Washington Post called "One of the best books of 2008"; The Language of Faith and Science: Straight Answers to Genuine Questions (2011, InterVarsity, with Francis Collins); Quantum Leap: How John Polkinghorne Found God in Science and Religion (2011, Lion Hudson, with Dean Nelson); The Anointed: Evangelical Truth in a Secular Age (September, 2011, with Randall Stephens), published under Harvard University Press's Belknap imprint; The Wonder of the Universe: Hints of God in a Fine-Tuned World (2012, InterVarsity Press); Seven Glorious Days: A Scientist Retells the Genesis Creation Story (2012, Paraclete Press), Saving the Original Sinner: How Christians Have Used the Bible’s First Man to Oppress, Inspire, and Make Sense of the World (2015, Beacon Press) and Abraham’s Dice: Chance and Providence in the Monotheistic Traditions (2016, Oxford University Press).

Giberson blogs at The Huffington Post where his articles have generated thousands of comments and are frequently featured. He was the founding editor of Science & Theology News, the leading publication in the field until it ceased publication in 2006, and editor-in-chief of Science & Spirit magazine from 2003-2006. One of his essays appears in a popular anthology used to teach freshman writing. From 1984 to 2011, Giberson was professor of physics at Eastern Nazarene College where he developed interdisciplinary courses and programs, including the college's first honors program. He has taught the traditional physics curriculum and also developed and taught courses in the history of science, critical thinking, contemporary issues, science & religion, as well as topical honors seminars. For 3 years, ending in 2009 he was the program director for the Venice Summer School on Science & Religion, located at the Venice Institute for Arts and Letters. In 2008 Giberson worked with Francis Collins to create the BioLogos Foundation, an initiative promoting science to religious constituencies inclined to reject it.

Giberson’s research interests include the interaction of science and religion, especially the contemporary conflict over evolution. He has been the recipient of grants totaling several million dollars; his most recent $200,000 grant from the Templeton Foundation funded a major international conference at Stonehill in the fall of 2014.

Education

  • MA, Ph. D., Physics, Rice University
  • B.S., Physics/Math, Eastern Nazarene College
  • B.A., Philosophy, Eastern Nazarene College

Accomplishments

  • Karl Giberson's book Saving Darwin was recognized by the Washington Post Book World as a "Best Book of 2008."

Research Interests

  • The interaction of science and religion, especially the contemporary conflict over evolution.

Courses Taught

  • Does Science Disprove God?
  • Science and Belief
  • Learning Community: The Big Bang Theory and Other Scientific Artforms