Past Event

Robert Pollack: Can Faith Broaden Reason?

May 22, 2016
10:00 AM - 11:00 AM
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Trinity Church, 75 Broadway, New York

Speaker: Professor Robert Pollack, Department of Biological Sciences, Columbia University

The question, “Can faith broaden reason?” is of such great intrinsic importance, and the risk implied by the possibility that the answer is “no” is so great, that simply to explain why the answer is “yes” is well worth the time and effort. Because this question lies at the boundary of the knowable and the unknowable, it challenges both my faith and my science.

Robert Pollack is an American biologist whose interests cross many academic lines.  He grew up in Brooklyn, attended public schools, and majored in physics at Columbia University, where he graduated from the College in 1961.  He received a Ph.D. in Biological Sciences from Brandeis University in 1966, and subsequently was a postdoctoral Fellow in Pathology with Howard Green at NYU Medical center, and at the Weizmann Institute in Israel with Ernest Winocour.  He was then recruited to Cold Spring Harbor Laboratory by James Watson to establish a research program on reversion of cancer cells.  He became a tenured Associate Professor of Microbiology at SUNY Stony Brook Medical Center, before returning to Columbia as a Professor of Biological Sciences in 1978.  He served as Dean of Columbia College from 1982 to 1989, overseeing the enrollment of women in the College for the first time. He remains at Columbia as a Professor of Biological Sciences.

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