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The online laboratory for NAI Seniors's study of George Eliot's Middlemarch.

Science & Literature: A Special Lecture

By 12:28 PM


Science & Literature: A Special Lecture by Professor Griffiths/ USC NAI AP English Lit Students + English 425 USC Students


September 27 Tuesday 1230-150 THH 207


[Readings]


*George Eliot, Middlemarch "Pier Glass" Passage (Ch 27) & "Introduction to Lydgate" (Ch 15)


*Devin Griffiths, Darwin & Literature


*Diana Postlethwaite, George Eliot & Science


*English 425 Course Readings this week on Scientific Radicalism -- Alfred Russell Wallace’s “On the Tendencies of Varieties to Depart Indefinitely from the Original Type”, The Origin of Species, chaps. 1-4. Wilberforce’s review in QR.



*Other Resources
British Library articles on science in Middlemarch


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55 comments

  1. I was really intrigued by the way Darwin responded to his wife's letter. The way Darwin so kindly responded to Emma's thoughts on how his theories and beliefs had affected her was amazing because Emma's letter showed me how much a person can care for another. The fact that Emma said she wanted to be with Darwin forever even after death mean she wanted to be with in the after or even in the heavens. Her passion for Darwin was displayed in her well written letter and I was fascinated by it. I also appreciated how professor Griffiths vividly explained where creativity comes from. He said it comes from drawing new connections between unexpected fields. And that is the exact reasons why USC have students take general education classes to see the different aspects that relate to each other whether it's accounting and science or literature and science. Another example that answers where does creativity come from could simply be the distinctions and similarities of Domestic selection and Natural Selection. In a way those are different fields that have connections within each other.

    Questions:

    Is there any other types of selections other than Domestic selection and Natural Selection?

    What are or what can be the different reforms within Domestic selection and Natural Selection? Is there any types of reforms pertaining to these two topics?

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  2. I found interesting the way Darwin implemented religion into science. This is because I am used to the idea that science and religion do not mix. In the epigraphs we analyzed with Professor Griffiths, I found the first one interesting. The first one was basically saying that God does not go one by one to every particular organism and changes things up. Instead, God sets up a general rule, and after that rule is applied and a whole generation follows, little things change miraculously slightly changing the standard of the organism. Also, I learned that there are two selections, natural and domestic. Domestic is when there is a bodily figure present to change things around in organisms such as breeding, and natural selection just naturally happens. Though they sound different, they are actually pretty similar because what is not considered is the internal organs! It is due to the fact that the people do not see what is going on in the inside. What happens in the inside is just as miraculously as what happens in natural selection.

    Question: What is the role of evolution? To keep changing the way of an organism as it passes from generation to generation? Or to develop and continue the processs by which organisms have been created and to make and come about new selections?

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  3. Although Darwin was never a person for school, he was able to gain many experiences throughout his life that changed his perspective on many things. For example, he never forced anyone to believe in his theory of evolution, on the contrary he supported the beliefs of others and accepted that everyone has different beliefs. Darwin challenged his own religion beliefs because after traveling for so long he began to notice how science played a big role on the religion aspect of life. I could imagine how conflicted he probably was with his wife, Emma, whose religions beliefs weren’t going to change, and of course Darwin supported that; but it was quite interesting that both believed different concepts. On the epigraph Professor Griffiths showed us, it sowed how much Emma loved him and how conflicted she felt with herself and him that they both had different beliefs because she felt that that would affect their afterlife in heaven since Darwin no longer believed in that. This really made me think about how science and religion have impacted many lives not just of Darwin’s and Emma’s, and also how science and religion can actually combine and not just contrast like how we are used to seeing it.


    Questions: Had Darwin not published his findings, and had he not traveled around the world and discovered Evolution would it have taken longer for us to know about it and how might have it been different? What would have been the outcome if Domestic selection hadn’t started to happen and only Natural selection was in place?

    Angelica Vasquez period 1

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  4. During Professor Griffiths’ lecture, one aha moment was when we realized not everything in nature is intentional. Paley’s analogy of finding a watch in nature, with all its complicated mechanisms, you automatically assume it is an accident. When in reality, if it was a hummingbird, with all its extremely complicated functions, there is no other option but to believe someone designed it. Another important point was how Darwin never forced his beliefs onto anyone, despite living in a drastically religious society. In the Victorian era, where the book of Genesis was considered the truth. Charles Darwin was more narrative and observatory than argumentative in his work. It made me realize the relationship science, religion and literature can have and that is what Professor Griffiths said creates creativity. Also, the fact that Scientists didn’t want to talk to Pigeon fanciers because they felt superior to them repressed new discoveries and ideas. A question I have is what is the ethical dilemma, should man “play god”? What does that mean? What would have happened if Darwin took a more argumentative stance? At USC, the small academic setting of the class made it very personal and interactive. This way, the technique-effect questions were helpful and maintained the students focus.
    -Adamaris Maldonado P.1

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  5. I was extremely fascinated upon the living of the 19th century leading towards developing such animal breeding practices that designated a controversial field that was fraught upon difficulties. Darwinism, on behalf, shaped my mind from his analogy. For example, the way of his methods towards his main informant regulates the breeders of fancy pigeons. I found it interesting how Darwinism seemed to be eager to take the pigeon fanciers at their word, in terms of his perfect analogy with natural selection - the idea that members of a species compete with each other for resources and individuals adapting to their lifestyle to have a better chance of surviving within the evolution itself. Darwin points out the variation itself is due to heredity such as that of humans adding up their variation over time through selective breeding. Another point that seemed intense to me was the way Emma's letter conflicted of Darwin’s theory of evolution. It conflicted within Emma’s worries about his dwindling faith and how their engagement will continue itself, in between her fears of differences of belief that would separate them and her desire to be close and openly share ideas.

    Questions:
    1) What makes natural selection thoroughly significant towards evolution itself?
    2) What are some types of components from that of natural selection?
    3) What makes evolutionary significantly important upon variety of time periods followed?

    Juan Pablo Blanco
    Period 1

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    Replies
    1. Something that I learned and found out very interesting was that Darwin was a very unique person in the sense that he did not follow his families foot steps, even though he gave it a shot he knew something else was there for him.Although being born into a family of doctors and being able to attend to one of the top two schools in Britain he then decided to drop out because he wasn't interested with the same thing as his father was therefore he decided to do his own thing. While being on a voyage for 5 years Darwin realized a lot more things and how they worked. For instance, traveling around the world led him to develop a theory of evolution and gave him better views on natural selection. Darwin spend 20 years with the natural selection theory and even though he had a theory he never forced anybody to believe in it. Something that stood out to me was that he got different species from different parts of the world and he was able to determine from common ancestors.This led him with the idea to believe that species survived through a process called natural selection where species that where able to adapt well to changing environments would continue with life but for those who weren't successful would die.



      Questions: How does Darwin's theory effect the world today and how does natural selection involve human beings?




      Klarissa Ayon, Period:1

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  6. Victoria Garcia-LopezSeptember 28, 2016 at 7:25 PM

    During this wonderful experience of attending Professor Griffiths English 425 class and with his USC Students, I learned a lot about the connection that science and art have together but I also learned about Darwin in the process. The way Darwin was with his discovery and the way science and art went together in his writings. One was the way Professor Griffiths students identified Charles Darwin as a Gentle radical, Darwin wanted people to see what he discovered about evolution but he didn't want to push it in their faces. Neither did he want to force it like others would have because he once believed in god before his discovers, he had a connection. Another example of this is his letter to his wife, or more so his reply to his wife who was deeply sadden to hear that he no longer believed in God. Another thing I found interesting was the way science and art go together. Darwin had to create this picture that allowed people to see his work, his discovery. In order to do so he couldn't use all of science he had to incorporate personification and metaphors. He had to use creativity to bring science together to make it easier to understand and that's amazing.
    Although I do have a question which is If art goes well with science what other things does art build a connection and if so what aspects intertwine together?
    -Per2 Victoria Garcia-Lopez

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  7. I was very surprised when Professor Griffiths began to elaborate on what science was in Darwin’s time, science was merely a hobby, almost a luxury and was very limited. Science in the nineteenth century was almost oppressed by religious beliefs and the way that Darwin just accepted that he could live in tolerance of religion and passion of science is amazing. Since science was so small at the time scientists really had to explore their creative sides to be able to describe their observations, just like during physics or biology class when the teacher tells you explain a concept to another person as if they have no idea what you are talking about. English and science is much like a man and a computer communicating. The man has to be creative with how he will use binary and mold it to communicate and get correct responses from the computer, bridging gaps, creating shortcuts, codes, all for the same reason, to resonate with the computer just like literature is used to bridges the gap between ignorance and knowledge in science. Can creativity come from not crossing different fields or does it only truly manifest when there is change? When ethics are put aside, is it logical to play ‘god’ and tinker with evolution to better or deteriorate a species? As time has passed, has evolution and adapting made the human race less capable than its original state?

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  8. I was really impressed on Darwins ideas even though he was not a school person , he hated school. One thing I noticed during the lecture was a lot about the connection that science and art have together due to Darwin and his ideas as Professor Griffiths explained in his lecture. I really loved when Professor Griffiths explained “creativity”. When you hear the word creativity we all think something different, and in this case Professor Griffiths explains that creativity has a relationship from drawings and these drawing have a meaning , and he says that it has a connection to different aspects of a person. Darwin was pushed to do something he did not like but as he grew and experienced new journeys in his life , he found out that he likes which was science. Along Professors Griffiths lecture he mention science and religion, which make me wonder how do this two relate because in a type of way they have a connection. I feel like science, religion and literature all together can symbolize something. Perhaps science, literature and religion can be what Professor Griffith said which all leads to creativity.
    Other than creativity , how can science , religion and literature connect or have a relationship with one another?
    -Perla Ruvalcaba
    -Period 1

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  9. During Professor Griffin's lecture I learned more of why science and english are put together. I managed to see how Darwin made decisions that would change his life and thought. One example would be towards his religion. We got to see a letter that Darwin sent to his wife about how Darwin did not believe in god and it got me to think that there was a time in my life where i didn't believe either. Emma Darwin was sadden by the news she had received because to her religion meant a lot and made your doubt her love for Darwin. Also when we read the last paragraph from the book “The Origin of Species” I thought it talked of rebirth in a way. For example, the words beginning, endless ,and cycling had a toll on that thougt because these words mean start or keep going. A question that i have is what if Darwin's religion thought never had changed and stayed the same? Would he had viewed his journey and research be different?
    - Lesly Aguilar Per.2

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  10. Charles Darwin was born in a family of doctors and was being trained to become a doctor as well. However the medical field was not for him, he found the lectures boring, and the surgeries tough to take. He dropped out of medical school and looked for something he was more interested in. What I found interested about Charles Darwin was the fact that he didn't let his own family tell him what to do, he choose his own pathway. Something else that I found interesting was when Professor Griffith talked about Darwin’s evolution theory. In how everyone has variation in them and are not identical, some are inherited, and some random. Which lead to how science and religion can actually mix together. Although many people believed in his theory many others didn't, for example his wife Emma. Throughout everything she really loved him even though they didn't believe in the same thing, they did not let that get in there way of their marriage.

    Questions:
    Why didn't Emma wanna change in what she believed in?
    How did churches react to Charles Darwin did they find him as a threat?



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  11. During Devin Griffiths class lecture,he was very wise and opened minded.He made everything he mentioned clear to his audience.He opened questions to his audience as well such why study science and literature together?Where does creativity come from?The answer which is drawing new connections between unexpected fields.This is why we study the "Art and Sciences" together.Devin also talked about a book Paradise Laws which is a book filled with huge ideas.Lastly,I learned that you have to pick small changes and magnify it overtime.Which means you make small clarifications and make it clear overtime.
    I was wondering what made Devin Griffith want to study science and literature together and not separately, is there a similarity between literature and science to him?

    -Teaira Gray PER:1

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  12. The trip to Professor Griffiths’ class was enthralling, there wasn't a single moment where I was not absorbing new information. I was hooked the moment he asked the question“where does creativity come from?”, because it was never something I had really thought about and to learn that it comes from drawing new connections between unexpected fields is exciting. The story of Darwin's unintentional trip around the world backs this point up, Darwin on his voyage began to draw connections between different cultures, religions, classes, and subjects which allowed him to challenge his own beliefs and implement new ones. He was a gentle radical who found a way to project his new discoveries and beliefs through science and literature onto the rest of the world. The idea that domestic selection is like magic and natural selection is a personification is very interesting to me because it falls in line with natural theology which means that whoever created all natural things in the world surpasses us completely on an intellectual level. One of the very last notes I took during the lecture was the response Darwin wrote to his wife in her letter to him about the star-crossed lovers they had become due to his new beliefs, it went “when I am dead, know many times, I have kissed and cried over this”, this really stood out to me because it demonstrated that as much as he may have wanted to be with his wife and believe in the same things they both once did, he just couldn't because as a scientist and as an explorer he had a job to do, he had to create.
    -If evolution is the answer, then how did life originate or rather who originated life?
    -Are the modern day conversations between people of faith and people of science contributing to the research and development of Darwins theory?

    Period#2

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  13. This comment has been removed by the author.

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  14. One fascinating moment during Professor Griffiths’ lecture was when he revealed to us that Charles Darwin never forced anyone to believe his theory which someone mentioned as a “gentle radical”. An example of this was when Emma Darwin wrote a letter to Charles Darwin about her heartbreak that he doesn't believe in God. Charles responded lightly, not shoving his belief down her throat.Also one Whoah! moment was when Professor Griffith mentioned that scientist at the time saw farmers less than them so they never bothered interacting with them and as a result this delayed new discoveries and ideas, one being natural selection, which Charles Darwin would soon discover. Pertaining to the class environment it was clear from the start that the class size was really small which is something I wouldn’t enjoy when I go to a university.

    Questions:
    1. In your opinion, what would have happened if Charles Darwin never took 5 years on his trip but rather 2 years like he initially intended to do? Would he have discovered the same findings?
    2. What do you think Charles Darwin would have done with his life if he never took a trip around the world?

    Oswerd Xol, Period 1

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  15. I would like to start off by saying thank you to Professor Griffiths, for allowing us to sit in his class with his own students and for giving that great lecture. Something I found interesting, was when I found out how Charles Darwin challenged his own beliefs, precisely on religion. That was something I didn't know, I knew that Natural Selection was a topic that challenged religion, I just had no idea that he wished that he didn't have to challenge religion. The letter that Darwin's wife, Emma, had written to him, was also something that caught me thinking; I think that's where it was an Aha! Moment for me. The letter got me thinking not only about them and the meaning but also about the other people. There could be others out there who have read his book, and believed that Natural Selection was a real thing, yet didn't want to face the reality, that that meant that they didn't believe in a higher power (God). Something else that I found interesting, was the model of 'Natural Theology that supports Thick Ontology'. The model reminded me of the food chain; you need to have all the things, or else the chain fails and something wrong occurs. And Professor Griffiths showed that exactly, he took God away, and the entire model fell apart. The question he presented to the class in the beginning about creativity ALL captured my attention. I haven't really thought that creativity came from making connections between unexpected fields/objects.

    Questions:
    1. For the people who didn't believe in a higher power, and believed in natural selection, who did they think was in charge of natural selection? Did they think it was Mother Nature herself?
    2. If Darwin had stayed in school to be a doctor or a clergymen, and hadn't done studies on natural selection, do you think someone else would've discovered it? And if so, how long would it have taken them?
    3. What other fields can you connect In prefer to innovate new things/ideas? (Besides science and literature)
    - Dayanara Saucedo Per. 2

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  16. Correction for the third question:
    3. What other fields can you connect in order to innovate new things/ideas? (Besides science and literature)

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  17. In professors griffiths class, I learned a lot of intriguing things about Charles Darwin. Since he was a little boy he was fond about the natural sciences rather than being in the medical background just as his family. Darwin became a naturalist and was . One thing that caught my attention was was Professor Griffith informed us that Darwin wasn't particularly the best student, however he was very curious. He was a hard believer for evolution and that furthered his mind on the natural selection, though he never forced anyone into believing it. He mixed science and religion together. Though he wasn't a huge believer on religion, his wife was. We analyzed and went over Emma’s letter to Darwin. One thing that caught my attention is how Emma was so worried for Darwin for not believing in what she did. Emma feared that he will not have eternal love with her in the afterlife since he doesn't have the same belief in God as his wife. Though that didn't stop Darwin from keeping his beliefs and he apologized for it. Where does creativity come from? Is the main question that we had to keep on our mind. Creativity comes from drawing new connections between unexpected fields. This is why we have the purpose to study the arts and science fields together.
    Questions:
    1. Do you think that if Emma's letter did change his beliefs how would that change/affect his as a naturalist?
    2. Besides pigeons, what other animals/organisms did Darwin look over for the natural selection and evolution?

    -Yvette Rodriguez
    Period 1

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  18. The topic that interested me the most in Professor Griffin seminar lecture was the creationist idea. For those of you who do not recall what it is, it says that intricately designed things do not spontaneously come out of nowhere but implies that there is a creator or higher power at work. This also implies that I am a wonderful piece of art created by a divine being. Furthermore this idea is incorporated into nature and natural selection. All species are designed to survive to the environment in unique ways. However some species die out because they are not as fit as more dominant species to survive. Charles Darwin was an innovator because he implemented religion into science. I learned that creativity comes from combining to different fields into one. This is exactly what Charles Darwin did and now we have the very controversial theory of evolution. I also thought Darwin's beliefs were interesting. He was a man of science. He was also a religious man. Usually these two are mutually exclusive characteristics. People are forced to specialize in one field of study, but Darwin was a versatile person.

    Question:
    Is there science in religion or is there religion in science?
    Is religion still incorporated into modern day science ?

    - Jose Martinez period 2

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  19. Something that I found very interesting about Darwin was that he was his unique person because even though he came from wealthy family he decided not to follow their footsteps when it came to education. I found very mind-blowing the Darwin dropped out of college twice and still managed to become a well-known scientist during the time and up to this day. I found this very interesting because in today’s society it is not heard that a scientist drops out of school twice. Coming from a wealthy family and a family of doctors Darwin knew that becoming a doctor wasn’t his passion and knew that out in the world there was something that would call his action and become his passion. This brought about Darwin’s theory of the natural section, which took over 20 years. Being a scientist during this time period wasn’t considered a job so people had to have a “real” job and be a scientist in their free time. Coming up with this theory wasn’t so easy because this law contradicted the religious point-of-view of human existence and the origin of life on earth. This brought upon a conflict between Darwin and Emma (his wife) because Emma wanted to be with him but precise went against the religion aspect of her beliefs. Professor Griffiths explain that creativity comes from the new connections between unexpected fields like the one Darwin used with was science and literature to further explain this theory of natural selections.

    Questions:
    1) Why is that during the 19th century becoming a scientists was something usual or seen as a “real” job for people to do as it’s seen in today’s society?
    2) What was Darwin’s real influence, if any, to come up with his theory of natural selection?

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  20. I found out how Charles Darwin was born into a family of doctors so he was basically forced to study medicine by his father. The lecture that professor Griffiths gave to us he said how Charles Darwin dropped out of college twice made me see that he wasn't that good of a student. Once professor Griffiths brought the question of Where does creativity come from? It got me more into the lecture of Charles Darwin and saw that is drawing connections between unexpected fields. Something else that caught my attention was when professor Griffiths said that Charles Darwin traveled around the world for 20 years looking for new discoveries where later he started collecting different kinds of birds.
    Question: How does natural selection involve us human beings?

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  21. What fascinated me throughout Professor Griffiths’ class was the background of Charles itself. Charles was told to do what everyone expected was good for him, however he ended up doing something he loved. Charles had imagination that linked both his passion and his work. As well as the positions scientists and pigeon fancier and how their class kept both of these scientist/breeders apart. It kept them from discovering something new together. However the conflict with religion and Darwin's book had conflict was not a surprise for me because of the time period. People rejected the idea of origin of species because it challenged the religious belief that they have grown and evolved with. And the connections Darwin makes allow people to believe he is challenging God himself by saying or introducing someone knew who would give us humans beauty and freshness in our world. It is believed that the person is mother nature.
    QUESTIONS:
    Darwin's theory is incredible because he questioned everything and he finds answers, but how did this theory change Darwins future life?

    In this time period, what would Darwin think about the knew theories that are being created by scientists or breeders.
    also, if Darwin had taken the path of a doctor, how would that have changed our world today? would we still be believing that there is no such thing as evolution? or mother nature?

    Aileen Hernandez: period #1

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  22. Being able to engage with Professor Griffiths English 425 class and with his USC Students, made me excited to start college next year! It made me picture that a year from now, that will be me sitting in an English college class. I love how Professor Griffith is so passionate about his teachings and he speaks with this enthusiasm which then passed onto me. It was interesting to learn more about Charles Darwin and the struggles and obstacles he had to overcome before he can truly find his true self as well as what he was passionate about. I was shocked when finding out how he had dropped out of medical school as well as college yet still managed to make a difference in the world and more specifically, science. A question that really stood out to me and gave me much to wonder about what “Where does creativity come from?” This question can have many ends to it and there is no such thing as a wrong answer. We all just have to find out passion and out creativity will take over. I liked the answer given by Professor Griffith when he said that creativity comes from “Drawing new connections between unexpected fields” which is exactly what Darwin did. He went against his families wishes and did his own thing. The letter his wife Emma wrote was powerful especially when she told him that if he doesn’t’ believe in god, he does not go to heaven. This is because religion was not a calling for him but it adds onto the different perspectives brought upon the beliefs of an individual and how it can affect the people around them. In what ways was Charles Theory challenged? How would science be different if Darwin had not traveled the world and developed his theory?

    -Natalie Montenegro, Period 1

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  23. Something that I found very interesting was learning more about Darwin growing up to a family of doctor who went to college and ended up dropping out. Then later he went to a college where he was going to become a priest and ended up dropping out. Then later Darwin went on a trip on the Beagle and took him 5 years which suppose to take him only a few months and only took 2 books with him. A moment where I had an "aha" moment when epigraphs always have a lot of meaning to the passage you are about to read though the passage can be hard to understand but can always give you better image. The theories that Darwin has discover Domestic Selection is something like magic and Natural Selection is like more has to do more with personal.One thing that got to me is when his wife always cried because Darwin never believed in God he always in scientology but what she was scared is that they weren't going to end up together because he can't go heaven but end up in hell.

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  24. Going on the field trip to visit Professor Griffins class was a very pleasant experience. It showed me how college class are, as well as gave me expectations to how topics are discussed in a college level. Before the trip I knew who Darwin was because of his theory of "Natural Selection" but I didn’t really know details of his life or things such as what natural selection actually was. So natural selection is when things are natural/ original from Earth. That means that a human didn’t not make it, it was something or someone much powerful that that. Professor Griffins further explained it by providing an example of a watch and a bird. He stated that a watch was built by a human because clocks can't reproduce or make more of itself alone, without the help of humans, meanwhile birds on the other hand were already on this Earth before or about the same time as humans. Birds are able to mate with each other in order to produce more of their species and are considered a creation of "mother nature". Something that really stood out to me was the point that Darwin made, which stated that he didn’t discriminate or judge those who were religious towards a God, because his wife was actually religious. His wife, Emma Darwin actually wrote a letter confessing that because she id deeply religious, she does not think they will be meant for each other because he does not believe in a God or heaven, so she states that they wont be together forever. By Darwin exploring this theory it would of gone either good or bad, because many people in that time period didn’t really accept things that were different or not holy, but was proven it was a life changer.


    1. Did Darwin test his theory of natural selection on any other animals or organisms other that Pigeons, and if so why did he choose that organism?
    2. If Darwin never had this theory or natural selection, what would he have gone to study, or work as?

    -Vanessa Zelaya
    Period 2

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  25. I would like to respond to Professor Griffith’s analogy between how perfectly mechanically put together a clock is compared to how perfectly created the hummingbird is. He explained how although the clock is a great creation, the creator of the clock is not the greatest creator because of the fact that the creator of the hummingbird (God), made the hummingbird just as perfectly put together as the clock, and it can reproduce, something a clock cannot do. This analogy made me think about the human species and how much of a great creation we are. If God is considered the greatest creator, wouldn’t he be considered even a better creator for creating the human species? The human species may not be ass perfectly put together as a clock or a mockingbird, but humans can reproduce just like mockingbirds and we can create other creations like this perfect clock that Professor Griffith was talking about. With all that being said, I believe that God isn’t the greatest creator for creating something like the hummingbird, but for creating us who are responsible for creating other perfect creations. Another moment that got my attention was when Professor Griffith expressed how Darwin wanted to believe in religion, but simply couldn’t. My response to this would be that if someone really wanted to believe in religion, they simply wouldn’t question it. Something like religion is a topic that doesn’t really have a clear answer or explanation; the only clear explanation is to have faith in religion. My question is that around Darwin’s time, nobody really questioned religion so if he truly wanted to believe in it, as he explains to Emma Darwin, wouldn't he just need to accept the fact that religion is real and that he shouldn’t question it?

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  26. During Professor Griffiths’ lecture I had many “aha” moments that really left me thinking. Something that first caught my attention was when he was giving a brief background of Charles Darwin and he told us that Darwin came from a family of doctors. I find it so interesting to know that his family had a whole life planned out for him but he went against it and did what he thought was right. I was inspired by the fact that Darwin dropped out of college twice and instead of giving up he followed his passion and became successful. Another fact that fascinated me was the fact that publishers didn’t want to publish Darwin’s work because the idea of evolution went against the beliefs of many. I think it was pretty smart of Darwin to share his theories through observations of pigeons because not many people would pay much attention to it but he was still sharing his thoughts. One of my final “aha” moments was when he explained we get creativity by drawing connections between unexpected fields. I was left with only question, Professor Griffith went over the system that was organized God, Humans, Animals, and finally Plants. He said if God was removed the whole system would fall out of order. My question is what if any other part of the system was removed would it still fall apart even though they are not as important? If so does that make them as important as God since the system can’t work without them?

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  27. What was interesting to me in Professor Griffin lecture was how Darwin came from a father and grandfather who were doctors. Darwin was forced to go to college and become a doctor but he didn't really like it. He didn't just drop out of college once but dropped out twice. He then decided that he was going on a voyage on a ship and had took two books, one of which was Paradise Lost. Darwin decided that he wanted to write. He explains how in order for something to survive they have to have better characteristics than others. Darwin was basically implying survival of the fittest. For example, ducks survive because they have certain characteristics such as webbed feet to survive. Darwin also inplies that things don't just show up out of nowhere. For example if we see a watch on the floor and see its figure and its features we can see that this watch was build by someone. The same thing goes for birds. If we see a bird and examine it closely we can see that it has wings that make it fly and and beaks that help them to eat. From this we can see that this bird was created by something with lots of power which would be god. I aslo found it interesting how Darwin collected birds from different countries and all these birds had something in common.

    Questions:
    1. What would have happen if Darwin kept studying to become a doctor and not have dropped out of school?

    2. Why did darwin pick birds out of all the animals he could have examined?

    -Juan Zavaleta, Period 2

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  28. What was interesting to me in Professor Griffin lecture was how Darwin came from a father and grandfather who were doctors. Darwin was forced to go to college and become a doctor but he didn't really like it. He didn't just drop out of college once but dropped out twice. He then decided that he was going on a voyage on a ship and had took two books, one of which was Paradise Lost. Darwin decided that he wanted to write. He explains how in order for something to survive they have to have better characteristics than others. Darwin was basically implying survival of the fittest. For example, ducks survive because they have certain characteristics such as webbed feet to survive. Darwin also inplies that things don't just show up out of nowhere. For example if we see a watch on the floor and see its figure and its features we can see that this watch was build by someone. The same thing goes for birds. If we see a bird and examine it closely we can see that it has wings that make it fly and and beaks that help them to eat. From this we can see that this bird was created by something with lots of power which would be god. I aslo found it interesting how Darwin collected birds from different countries and all these birds had something in common.

    Questions:
    1. What would have happen if Darwin kept studying to become a doctor and not have dropped out of school?

    2. Why did darwin pick birds out of all the animals he could have examined?

    -Juan Zavaleta, Period 2

    ReplyDelete
  29. I would like to thank Professor Griffith for having us in your class; this was a truly marvelous opportunity. The thing that most intrigued me in this lecture was the fact mentioned that Darwin did not try to contradict religion as he knew that it was really important to people, yet he thinks differently. I think that the moment that I understood it all was when the professor explained that Darwin believed that we all live under general laws by God. The people really couldn’t contradict that idea and then he started to put into play his own thought with the thought that everything is under a general law. Darwin believes in natural selection and while he is able to prove this theory, he has to be able to persuade other to believe in it as well, and in his concluding paragraph, he brings back the general laws by saying that there is so much of nature around us that we become dependent among one another and we are all “produced by laws acting around us”- restating his affirmation in the theory of natural selection but also suggesting that it can all possibly be connected to a religious point of view. Another thing that really stuck to me was the “pigeon fancier’s”, I like how this point of view still exists today and really talk about the ego of the human. Of course the scientists will not pay any attention to anyone below them, especially not pigeon farmers! They are too good for that, and in that point of view, they miss out in all the years of experience that these farmers have to offer them, the scientist’s ego get in the way of learning more which is what they aim to do. This is a demonstration of egoism, just like in the Lydgate passage.
    Question:
    How can we relate a human’s natural egoism to creativity?
    Does Darwin somehow intentionally mention the pigeons to point out egoism, or was it a coincidence?
    Jessica Hernandez-Flores
    Period 2
    Group 1

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  30. I am fascinated with the fact of how we could use science as evidence in order to prove the points in the Bible's to be true, I would always think that they were two separate things that should never overlap each other. For example, God’s words would equal the Bible and God’s work would equal nature with is science. My first guess when Professor Griffith asked what God’s work would equal I thought of miracles, but now i see that science is a form of miracle but just with an explanation behind it, back then they were considered miracles because no one was able to explain what was going on bit now we can so it's classified as science. God is the one that keeps everything together and without God everything would fall apart. I enjoyed being in the college environment and I also enjoyed the fact that it took Charles Darwin a while to figure out what he had wanted to do with his life and kept switching from different fields of work because, I’m kind of scared of the fact that once I’m studying my major I decided to chance it because I see that I’m not passionate about it. To know someone that is acknowledged as Charles Darwin took him a while to figure out what he wanted to do soothes me.

    Questions:
    1)Why do we get fascinated with technology more then nature itself when it can do certain things better then man made things?
    2)Can we make ourself evolve like how we do it to animals?

    Adriana Caselin; Period:2

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  31. In the beginning of the class I was enthralled by the concept that creativity can sprout out from the amalgamation and connections between unexpected fields of study. Professor Griffiths presented us with a modern example of an infusion between technology and the arts. I was unaware of the college courses that Steve Jobs took, and to be informed that this successful entrepreneur of Apple took a course in calligraphy opened my eyes. I enjoyed this piece of insight and how it linked to the overall discussion on the correlations between literature and science. Charles Darwin wrote “The Origin of Species” in which he writes about his theory of evolution in a way that not only uses science as an absolute backbone to support his scientific findings but also elements in literature. Instead of only stating facts and evidence, Darwin had a background with literature that helped “shaped his descriptions of the natural world.” And I find it interesting now as I read Middlemarch and how George Eliot too blends these two forms together. She provides her thoughts on certain characters or events within Middlemarch and simultaneously gives an analyzation through observations in which the narrator delivers by using keywords such as “perhaps.” Not only does Elliot demonstrate scientific implications through observation but also by alluding to other figures of sciences to support and compare these observations. In chapter 15, Eliot dedicates majority of this chapter to the description on Tertius Lydgate and within one portion, she brings up the anatomist Marie Francois Xavier Bichat to helps characterize Lydgate and his longing “to demonstrate the more intimate relations of living structure” by also using Bichat’s “study of the different tissues” to create a parallel. In my opinion, both Darwin and Eliot's works are strong examples in which they present the similarities novelist and scientist have through their methods in providing individual cognition. Some question I have is how might’ve Darwin responded to negative criticism based upon his book during his time? What were some of the effects that Darwin was faced with after his publication on the Origin of Species?

    Hunter Wilkinson
    Period 2

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  32. Throughout Darwin discussion many new fascinations arose from the words of a dead author and built new inquisitions about the relationship between literature and science despite there differences. One fascination that had inspired me during the class was the aspect of creativity deriving from drawing new connection from different fields. In general this has made me ponder about the amount of combination things that shouldn't go together come together to form a new idea. aside from this though darwin fascination towards science was similar as to a religious belief. for example he devoted his life to in a way find his true purpose in this world and when in to a crusade to find it. he came back a changed man fascinated by his discovery. it amazed me how much a simple discovery can lead the change in someones life completely, in Darwin's case he sacrificed his love,family, and religion and dedicated his studies towards his discovery of the origins of life. in his studies darwin not only describes his findings regularly but describes them in literary forms; with passion,inspiration, and emotion. he discuses the simple evolution of a pigeon but in it explains his fascination for the differences a single pigeon can have during its evolution. darwin combines the aspect of science through literature and builds a new foundation of creativity through his believes.

    1. what causes inspiration i the human mind that leads you to be come so dedicated ?
    2. what other revolutionary moment can be compared to Darwin's events?
    3. If darwin didn't believe in God then what did he believe in, as in what created nature or allowed evolution to him?

    ReplyDelete
  33. I was really interested during the lecture by professor Griffith for the pure topic on how the simple quotes by scientists or novelists can have bigger meaning behind it and how exactly Darwin dealt with his discoveries. For example, when the professor mentioned that Darwin studied pigeons a majority of his time did baffle me since he is now known for so many other discoveries, but to believe he really based his new book on pigeons in order for the upper class to stay away from the book is quite intelligent.What really caught my attention was when it was said that his lover, Emma Darwin, wrote to him a letter believing he would change since she was worried that they would not end up together forever in heaven. The response Darwin gave was, “ When I am dead, know that many times I have kissed and cried over this.” The response was straightforward when he will not change and go back to religion, even for his wife, he decides to stay on the side of science itself and I believe that is truly powerful. Before the lecture I never gave natural selection a second thought but as the professor moved deeper into the subject and how it is all connected it really explained more on this topic to the point I truly understood it clearly.

    A couple questions I do have for this would be:

    1.Why did we let hierarchy stop us from speaking to people underclass or vice versa ?

    2.How did Emma Darwin feel about the response she got from Charles Darwin ?


    Ashley Avina, Period 1

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  34. I really enjoyed the lecture on Darwin’s life and how he was influenced by literature. First off, something that really made me think was the fact that most people actually study arts and then go on doing something like making computers. Like Steve Jobs, he did not study Computer science or computer engineering, in fact he studied Literature and Calligraphy. Similarly, Darwin never studied to be an explorer or a scientist, he did at first but he went on to studying Literature and the Arts. And this goes the show how literature truly affect us all; it’s changed my mind completely on the idea of English Literature. My first thought about Literature was “boring” and “lots of writing”, but now I see it as such a beautiful and complex subject; a subject which influences us based on other people’s writings. And this notion of Literature is truly inspiring to my life in regards to choosing a major in College. Though the sciences are too, very complex subjects, English Literature can express ideas which science simply cannot. As we see with Darwin’s book On the Origin of Species, which he firstly introduces with the description of domesticated animals not with scientific theories and depictions, rather with poetic Literature.
    A couple questions that I have are, what would’ve happened if Darwin followed his father’s wishes in him becoming a doctor? Would he have discovered something in the Medicine Field? Would he be just as important to the world as he is now?

    Ricardo Giles
    period 1

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  35. Darwin grew up reading a lot of literature and in a family full of doctors. I found it fascinating how he didn't become a doctor like everyone in his family had, but instead was able to find his passion through exploration. Through his exploration he was able to find a connection between animals from different places, he later came to the conclusion of natural selection. The letter that his wife wrote to him really caught my attention because she demonstrates through the letter how Darwin had to leave his religious beliefs behind to continue proving his theory. Though his response was quite short it said a lot about how he felt about having to put his religion aside. It showed how it truly hurt him to do this but due to the fact that his theory went against some religious belief he was forced too. This is something Darwin wanted to change , he wanted people to be able to keep their religious beliefs even if they also believed in science that went against it.

    I personally liked the academic setting because it was a small class, not so intimidating , and a more one to one environment. I believe I would be able to feel more comfortable being in a class like that.


    Questions:
    If Darwin had not had this background knowledge of literature , would his theories be as well known as they are now ?


    Would Darwin's Domestic theory have differed if he had not reached out to Pigeon fanciers to help him out ?


    -Samantha Suarez , P 1

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  36. Professor Griffith's lecture was really eye opening to me, throughout his lecture I felt several aha moments but my biggest one was when he was reading a quote by Darwin, when Darwin started talking about Mother Nature. Professor Griffith dissected what Darwin meant and I found that fascinating. He explained that Darwin was contrasting the intentions of man and of Mother Nature. He explained that Darwin was conveying that "man" us, only breeds qualities into animals that we see fit for ourselves, things that would only benefit man, we in essence, are selfish beings that only think of our selves. Meanwhile Mother Nature is the exact opposite, through natural selection Mother Nature kills off or changes certain animals or plants for the greater good, for the survival of entire species, and to keep balance in nature. Everything Mother Nature does is for others not for herself unlike man who only thinks of himself when committing the act of domestic selection. In this Darwin evoked a sense of wonder, beauty, and fascination with what Mother Nature does. I love the point that Professor Griffith made where he said that Darwin personifies nature in order to give his reader an idea of what natural selection is. It made me understand how Darwin was abIe to touch his audience. I also really liked when Professor Griffith mentioned finding a watch in the forest and finding a hummingbird. It really clarified what Darwin was trying to convey to his readers and really helped me to understand the message that Darwin was trying to get across, and it certainly made my life easier.

    Questions
    Did Darwin ever come to terms with his religion?
    I wonder if his wife believed in his theory of natural selection.
    I wonder what research Darwin would be doing if he were still alive.

    Breana Davidson P2

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  37. In Professor Griffins class lecture, he talked about where does creativity come from? How does nature select? Charles Darwin's beliefs and The Book Paradise which can open your mind into seeing other possibilities like nature. When professor Griffin was talking about Darwins finches, In my perspective he was trying to say every finch have the same traits but they are unique in different ways. Humans similar to finches ,we are able to tell each other differences by how we look, s,ell, and our belief. So how does nature select?? Nature selects the animals that can survive , and from there they are able to spread their genes creating more animals that can survive meaning Natural selection. Domestic selection is a way how oneself wants a unique breed, different from the rest. Creativity comes from drawing new connections between unexpected fields, thats why we study the Arts and Sciences together. Professor Griffin also talked about how Charles Darwin was trying to change the world in ways we see objects, people, and the world. Charles darwin Dropped out of college, he wasn't a good student but one thing he was good t was being curious. He wanted to explore the world with a boat called "The Beagle", when he began to travel he began to see how nature works, he saw patterns, and he saw cycles.

    1. What would have happened if Darwin was raised with different parents ?

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  38. In Professor Griffiths's lecture one thing that truly stood out to me and opened up a whole new perspective to me was that he was able to make the connections between science and religion. He stated that religion and science do not block each other, but instead they are both connected. For example, as Charles Darwin begins his book with two epigraphs, if we center our focus to Bacon's epigraph it states "Book of God" which means the bible and "Book of God's Work" which means nature. If we go deeper into our analysis, we see that Charles Darwin is ultimately drawing a connection between science and religion instead of stating that there is a conflict between them.
    Another fascinating moment that I had during Professor Griffiths' lecture was the the letter Emma Darwin, sent Charles Darwin, in which she asserted that she believed they belongs together, not just on Earth, but forever. We can take this to mean heaven, but now that he believes in science that will not happen. Also, the fact that Darwin didn't force his theory upon his wife, but instead just responded in a gentle way fascinated me.
    One last aha moment I had during the class was the fact that I learned that Charles Darwin was a "gentle radical". We can conclude that he was a gentle radical because he never shoved his ideas down someone throat and never forced anyone to believe his theories he instead just put his ideas out there and never contradicted the fact that a person may not be able to believe that science and religion are interconnected.


    Questions:
    1: If religion and science have a connection , why do can it not be accepted in all religion that may deny science?

    2: Were there any restrictions set in science due to religion or vice versa?

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  39. Throughout the lecture and discussion of Charles Darwin I was left with awe as it was my expression towards the meaning of The Origins of Species and I must say, thank you for this great opportunity Professor Griffith. Now with that said, I was in actual awe in the theory of evolution because I actually thought that Darwin intended to prove theology wrong, but I was in a misconception of what has been told by religion about science. I initially thought that the theory of evolution rebutted the belief of God, however, I have learned that Darwin in fact already knew that his work can cause social chaos and even attempted to show that "Science is not absolute" using Epigraphs that help determine the inner meaning of the context of the chapter. In addition, I also found fascinating that Darwin had a copied of Paradise Lost by John Milton in which Darwin, perhaps, found as an influence for his Origins of Species. I think that the Origins of Species is similar to Paradise Lost in that in Paradise Lost, Adam and Eve are casted away from Paradise, the awakening of truth beside them. I think that the Origin of Species has a similar effect in that with the discovery of evolution like the explicit forbidden fruit: it showed the distance of darwin to god and the people to god in that they have fallen from nature to the depths of the domestication of nature.

    Questions:

    1. Do you think that if Darwin were to have another book to be his influence other than Paradise Lost, would the Origins of Species be different or similar?
    2. Did creativity allow Darwin to elaborate the theory of evolution in the Origins of Species and do you think that is, perhaps, why Wallace and other "naturalist" scientists weren't as successful like the publication of the Origins of Species from Charles Darwin?
    3. With Darwin's work on evolution, would you say that the discovery of science was the evocation of the belief of the people to god or their religion in that the belief was rebutted? Can this imply to the fall of man in Paradise Lost, in that science evicted the minds of the believers to become distant to god for the study of science, like how Adam and Eve became distant to god from having a possession of sex, in this case the possession of science?

    -Salvador Villafana
    Period 2 Group 2

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  40. During Professor Griffin's class I found something which caught my attention which was how through all Charles Darwin's hardships which were him finding himself, dropping out of college, and also being pressured by his parents to achieve the future they wanted for him. When hearing about this , it showed me that just because society would try to dictate the new generation's prosperity would be by repetition of what the last generation did, that it didn't mean you wouldn't be successful because Charles Darwin proved that. He proved this by setting sail and doing what he loved which was studying the scientific field. Even though Darwin dropped out of college twice this did discourage him from following his dreams, which paid off because he because famous for taking the five year voyage around the world. I also believe that his incorporation of literature into talking about natural selection , in saying that Nature could be and is to many people a mother because of the things that she gives as well as the sacrifices she makes for us. One question I had was I wonder is Charles Darwin would he be a english major is he hadn't followed his dreams?

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  41. I've learn so much from Professor Griffiths' lecture and getting to know where creativity comes from. Darwin was horrible student in which he had dropped put twice and had took an adventure sailing the seas and that is when he finally decided what he wanted to be. This is how science and literature are able to be in the same category, because Darwin was always able to "diagnose a problem, and tends to find the solution". This is very important because before starting something you would want to be able to find a specific area on where you would like to start and by doing little things to that one thing may have led you to something completely different. The letter that Emma wrote to Darwin was very powerful in my opinion, because Darwin was trying to figure out all these neat things for his book that involved the science part and he had found that more believable then god in which had hurt his wife very much. This is important because Emma loves Darwin so much that she would be hurt if he doesn't believe in god sooner or later because if not he'll go to hell and they wouldn't be together forever as she wanted.I also like to point out on how there is a difference between Gods words and Gods work, because gods words are from the bible while gods work is involved in nature and how you are able to create different types of animals or many more involving nature and it is a beautiful gift. Creativity comes from drawing new connections between unexpected fields, and this is important because it takes time to develop something amazing or even to discover something wonderful, because it takes more than one ideas to create something amazing.

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  42. In proffesor Griffith's it was interesting to here that darwin dropped out of two great University and how he still succeded in life. For example we see how Darwin's father is a doctor and we see how he was like destined to follow in his fathers foootstep but he didn't follow his father. We then see that Darwin decided to go on a journey that was only suppose to take 2 years but it took 5 years and only had two books and this is important because this is where he discovered natural selection and what he later decided to use this as his research. This is important because he marries his wife and he belives that natural selection can be made by us while hsi wife believes that mother nature causes this. As a result his wife doesnt say that he is wrong but since he believes in his research she agrees to let him believe in what he thinks is right.
    Questions
    Did his wife ever believe in his thoery the way he viewed it?
    Did anyone ever say that he was wrong and was he discourageed?

    ReplyDelete
  43. Professor Griffith’s lecture was one of the most enlightening moments of my life and for allowing us to be apart of your class I would like to thank you!! Charles Darwin was a teenager with similar characteristics as mine and through this i feel like i was able to relate so much the figure he was in his time. Many of our parents believe we will be lawyers, successful business men/women just like Charles’ father believed he would be a successful doctor. Although Charles Darwin did not follow his family's footsteps he was able to explore a world he knew most people did not approve or even know about. Being sent away on a boat for 5 years must be terrifying but Charles Darwin was surrounded by a new foundation of life ( the origin of species). He spent about 20 years observing and collecting data. It was amazing and pretty shocking to know that way…. way back in the day people were not able to express their love for the sciences unless it was a hobby. Years later we now know the importance and deeper meaning of science thanks to Charles Darwin's contribution, persistence and dedication

    Pigeons might not be the most pleasant example in my opinion but i will say they are something i never knew i could gain knowledge from! It is amazing to know how many combinations are possible when you interbreed, this visually helped me understand how one is able to combine and connect things such as arts with english or math and science ETC. It is very important to mix and match things to be able to have a wide variety of all the combinations possible. Professor Griffith brought up a great example that contained a clock, he said that although a clock has a well functioning mechanismen it is not able to reproduce as while a hummingbird ( a very well functioning creature) is able to provide more because it has the advantage of reproducing. Something that stood out to me was the letter Emma wrote to Charles, both had very different views of God. Charles did not believe in God while Emma did, it was very hard for Emma to be with someone that did not have the same views as her ( she wanted to be with charles both in this life and afterlife). This makes me wonder if combining and connecting views to create a new view can come into play.


    Should two people that love each other be deprived from feeling the way they do because of their views on God?
    Do you believe being adventurous and curious just like Charles always has a good outcome?

    ReplyDelete
  44. I am very apreciative of the opportunity that we had on Wesnesday to attend Proffessor Griffiths class. I found it facinating how Darwin paved his own path into success. I realized that the power of curiosty and imaginating are great because it can potientially lead to new discoveries and inventions. In Darwins case, he felt a connecting to collecting differnet speciman like insects. His curiousity made him very observative and spawned big ideas. I found it intersesting that after his release of his discoveries he was said to be a “gentle radical”. This idea of being a “gentle radical” refers to his causiousness of not wanting to shatter everyones faith and belifs in totality; his intentions were never to force people to completely alter their values and beleifs, all he wanted to do was to prove that there exists a direct connection between domesticated selection and natural selection. I was able to clearly see the relationship and similarity between both selections- someone is picking the traits they consider the strongest to pass to generations to come. Domestic selection is done by human beings in particular farmers are the experts who control the bredding and making of the animals. On the other hand, mother nature is the powerful force selecting and ruling natural selection. I was amused by the complexity of both they selctions. I agree with Proffessor Girffiths suggestion that domestic selection is truly “magical” because of all the possible things it can do. I realized that one major differnce between these two selections is that while domestic selection is done by a human being, natural selection has no entity doing the actual changing and ajustments- it is just the incredible power of mother nature personifide to give it a sence of humanity. I thought it was selfish and greedy of mankind to be domestic selectors, while on the other hand mother nature has been very generous,and giving to all equally. I wonder where the term mother nature derrived from? Why is it not called father nature instead?
    I question what would be of the world if breedding of differnt kinds did not occur?
    Millie Sanchez- Period 1

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  45. Throughout these couple of days we have gotten packages to read and visited a USC class with professor Griffith. In these passages I've read I have took away some main points. In the passage The Pier-Glass it compared a candle to a human how “candle is the egoism of any person now absent” as to which it is self-centered/one is its own candle/and has its own pattern (scratches). One keyword we found in this passage was impartially, it talks about how “the scratches are going everywhere impartially and it is only your candle which produces the flattering [negative connotation] illusion of a concentric arrangement…” the takeaway from this was natural selection. This passage also talks positive about philosophy and science. By saying “An eminent philosopher among my friends, who can dignify even your “ugly furniture” [blind you make you not aware of seeing the truth] by lifting it into the serene light of science, has shown me this pregnant [full of life, full of new things] little fact. Moving back down it talks about an “exclusive optical selection” and this to me reads as you move the candle/human it'll have a new pattern. Then we went on to read “Tertius Lydgate” first couple of sentences starts off by a free and direct disclosure which is where it moves into the character's point of view without telling you. It also includes the words indecent passage which shows you the idea of being immature and ignorance. and shifts to say that his “moment of vocation had come..” [His mission, his thing he aspire to do]. In Professor Griffiths class I was really confused not to the teaching but just how fast he was jumping to different things I feel that a college class is really comfortable it is place where you can be open. Everyone doesn't know everything that's why they are still going to school so for you to share your opinion or answer to a question opens other people's mind to the question which leads to them expanding and more knowledge is being passed around.

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  46. Within this lecture given by Professor Griffiths, a question was brought up, Where does creativity come from? Well in short, creativity comes from illustrating new relations between unanticipated fields such as the study of Art and Sciences. I was astonished when I found out Charles Darwin dropped out of 2 colleges yet more surprised as well as glad to know that he became a naturalist. Darwin was trained to be a doctor and to travel the world collecting things for years then becoming a naturalist is a drastic change. I’m glad to know this because I view the transition as a beautiful thing, instead of following the path that was set for him; he made his own path, which is very inspiring. What I found interesting about Charles Darwin was his view on God and religion and how he doesn’t believe in it, but respects others views and thoughts. I take a liking to this for I share a similar view as him. I was mesmerized by the letter sent from his wife Emma Darwin as well as his response for she wrote about how she wanted to not only spend her life with him, but eternity. What I found fascinating was his response to this letter, he wrote to her, telling her that he truly wishes he could believe, but just can’t. Some questions I have: Before death, did Charles Darwin accomplish all the goals he had set? and Did Charles Darwin leave any regrets?

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  47. I was very intrigued by Professor Griffiths lecture on science and literature. I enjoyed hearing Darwin’s life experience because he was forced by his parents to attend a medical college, which he didn’t enjoy at all and also dropped out of college twice. After Darwin had the chance to travel around the world for two years, he ended up extending it to five years. Darwin’s trip around the word made him realize how science had a connection to religion. Darwin had problems with his wife Emma about his fascination about science and her view about religion. Professor Griffiths showed us a piece of writing that she wrote to Darwin about their different beliefs. Emma adored him but she couldn’t accept the fact that after Darwin’s experience he had no longer believed in god. Emma knew that Darwin wasn’t going to join her to heaven because in order for him go to there, he had to forget about science and believe in god. He wanted to believe in god but he couldn’t because science has shown him different perspectives that god couldn’t. Before I had no idea that religion and science combined together, but now it has changed my perspective.
    Why didn't Emma try to change her perspective about science for Darwin?
    Did other people have the same perspective about science just like Darwin?
    Evelyn Cifuentes: Per-2/Group 6

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  48. First of all I was to thank professor Griffith's for having us to participate in his lecture. Before speaking about coming to his class, I never had in mind how Scientist and novelist relate, and how religion was incorporated. We learned a lot about Charles Darwin, one thing that stood out for me the most was that Darwin was not the smartest kid ever, this stood out because he did not follow tradition on becoming a doctor nor followed religion thoroughly like the rest of the community. He went out of his way in order to follow his passion of collecting objects and natural science. Throughout Darwin’s journey he lost value of religion because it was like the unknown to natural selection. As he used the clock to demonstrate that it means domestic selection because it is an item that works, is produced and used by machines and people and it has the same exact traits, but for natural selection humans reproduce with similar traits and sometimes some of the traits are lost. Another thing is that there was social class pointed out but that was not an obstacle for Darwin because he believed that the lower class or any class could have had great information about natural selection. He used farmers (lower class) to help him track down specifics about animals and how nature works. Professor Griffiths also showed us a letter about Darwin's wife explaining that it would be a conflict that Darwin did not believe in religion anymore because it meant that they wouldn't be together for eternity but the way that he responded was very strong because he stood up for his own belief and discoveries. Darwin’s point of view about not everything nature is intentional opens up new ideas and new discoveries.

    Would there have been a difference if Darwin’s wife supported him in his belief?
    Did that community have a negative effect towards Darwin?
    What if Darwin decided to go back to religion due to his wife’s Letter?
    Luciana Guerra Period 2 Group 5

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  49. The conclusion on what creativity means and comes from at the end of the lecture captured me as it put everything else discussed prior in perspective. For instance, going back to the beginning of the lecture where i learned great insight on Darwin’s upbringing and mind set and his creativity as he connected observation and narrative to create a law that his peers could read and not totally reject as he tried not to devalue their beliefs as the woman he loved shared the same beliefs as his peers. Further on, we discussed how Darwin uses personification when describing natural selection, the fact that certain qualities will be favored and based on that some species will progress while others die off, as its selector is not known but powerful as it can see, select, and change things breeder’s wouldn’t be able to shown through the evolution of certain species as “species are not fixed”. I found Darwin’s conclusion amazing, although his theory produces a flat ontology, his explanations combined with literature got the point of his theory across without throwing everyone else’s belief out shown in the closing paragraph as he reminds the reader of this extraordinary nature and the law that comes with it.

    Katherine loera p-1

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  50. Darwin came from a father and grandfather who were doctors. Darwin was forced (highly influenced) to go to college and become a doctor but he didn't really like it. He didn't just drop out of college once but dropped out twice. He then decided that he was going on a trip on a ship and had took two “simple” books, one of which was Paradise Lost. He basically memorized this book inside out. Darwin then decided that he wanted to write about something important for him. Darwin explains how in order for something to survive they have to have better characteristics than others. To get these better characteristics you must adapt to the new and get better. Darwin was basically implying survival of the fittest. For example, ducks survive because they adapt to the new. The new is it's surrounding from predators to the environment. Darwin also implies that things don't just show up out of nowhere.
    Questions:
    1. What if Darwin didn't drop out of college atleast one of those times?
    2. Why does Darwin like and find birds so interesting?

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  51. Thank for the good topic,Thanks for your sharing.

    ดูหนังผี

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