The science of belief: Colin Blakemore and Tom McLeish in conversation

Friday 26 January 2018, 18.30-19.45
BP Lecture Theatre
£5, Members/concessions £3

Humans, through time and across the world, have consistently expressed patterns of believing and belonging through shared narrative and practice.

In this discussion, chaired by award-winning journalist, writer and BBC broadcaster Samira Ahmed, scientists Colin Blakemore and Tom McLeish examine how the cognitive impetus that drove the emergence of science might be considered to be the same impetus that fostered religion and other metaphysical beliefs.

They will discuss how science is itself at the heart of being human, and can be traced back through art, philosophy and ancient stories, including those in religious traditions.

Presented in collaboration with the Royal Society.

Tom McLeish is Professor of Physics at Durham University, Fellow of the Royal Society and Vice-President of Science at the Institute of Physics. In his acclaimed 2014 book Faith and Wisdom in Science, he argued for science to be reassimilated into the interconnected whole of human activity, including our need for religion.

Sir Colin Blakemore FMedSci FRS is Professor of Neuroscience and Philosophy at the School of Advanced Study, University of London, and Emeritus Professor of Neuroscience at the University of Oxford. He was formerly Chief Executive of the British Medical Research Council. His work as a neurobiologist has contributed to our understanding of vision, and how the brain develops and adapts. He was influential in demonstrating ‘neural plasticity’ – how brain cells reorganise themselves in response to the environment after birth and even in adulthood.

In Detail

Booking fee: £1.00 per ticket

Events tickets

The science of belief: Colin Blakemore and Tom McLeish in conversation

Friday 26 January 2018

The Museum does not print or send out tickets for online purchases. Please ensure you bring your credit card or order confirmation e-mail to the exhibition entrance to gain admittance.

Having trouble with your order? You can email us at:
or call us on +44 (0)20 7323 8181

Become a Member for as little as £43 per person*

  • Free entry to all special exhibitions including:

    - The BP exhibition Scythians: warriors of ancient Siberia (14 Sept 2017 – 14 Jan 2018)
    - Living with gods: peoples, places and worlds beyond (2 Nov 2017 - 8 Apr 2018)
  • Members-only events
  • Access to the Members' Room
  • Regular mailings, publications and discounts
Become a Member Continue booking

* Based on a Joint Membership by direct debit (£86 total).

Select ticket Choose date and time Confirm Your basket
Ticket Type Quantity Price
Total (including booking fees): £0.00

Mon Tue Wed Thu Fri Sat Sun
Your ticket has been added to your basket
Continue to basket
Lead Adult