Monday, April 10, 2006

Hera or Empathy

William (Bill) Leiss gave a talk at a book launch for his novel Hera or Empathy. This was the first time I have been able to see him in person.

Bill writes on the back cover:

"My objective is to draw a line in the sand between religion and science - in order to protect both. The coming of molecular biology and the science of DNA is the signal for a final rupture between science and monotheistic religion. Each is now a constant danger to the other; in each other's presence they compose an explosive mixture, like the gases hydrogen and oxygen. Both can only survive and endure on the same planet if they carefully avoid each other. This is the meaning of the appearance on earch of our kind and its fate, which we have accepted: To enable this mutual avoidance strategy to succeed."

You can get it at Chapters. Because I got mine in person, Bill signed my copy. (grin)

An interesting factoid: Richard Smith (my Senior Supervisor) and Roman Onufrijchuk (Supervisor) were both students of Bill Leiss, who studied with Marcuse, who studied with Heidegger. Andrew Feenberg (Supervisor) also studied with Marcuse, knows Bill from "the old days" and has published many works on his theories. I feel very privileged to be able to work so closely with such extraordinary people with a Frankfurt School lineage right here in Vancouver.


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