Center for Philosophy of Religion (
Wed, 12 Mar 1997 15:58:09 -0500

Some of you midwesterners might be interested in this. I'm planning to attend.



A "mini-conference" to be held at the University of Notre Dame on Friday,
April 4th and Saturday, April 5th.


Michael Behe, Professor of Chemistry, Lehigh University

Daniel Dennett, Professor of Philosophy, Tufts University. Author of
Darwin's Dangerous Idea.

David Haig, Society of Fellows and Museum of Comparative Zoology, Harvard


In his recent book Darwin's Black Box: The Biochemical Challenge to
Evolution, the biochemist Michael Behe contends that for Darwin, and for
biologists generally, the cell has been treated as a "black box." That is,
Darwin assumed and his successors have assumed that it was possible to
provide an account of the evolution of life without knowing anything about
the internal workings of the cell. But biochemists have now opened the
"black box," and, Behe argues, what they have found there has not been
given a Darwinian explanation and, in fact, cannot be given a Darwinian
explanation. He further argues that the "irreducible complexity" of the
molecular machinery of the cell can be explained only on the assumption
that it is a product of intelligent design.

At this conference, Professor Behe will present an outline of his arguments
for these conclusions. Two Darwinians (Daniel Dennett and David Haig) will
respond to Behe's arguments, and Behe will reply to their criticisms. The
conference will close with a general discussion in which the members of the
audience are invited to direct questions to the participants.

The proceedings of the conference are open to the general public. No pre
registration is required and there will be no conference registration fee.
The conference will take place in the Continuing Education Center on the
Notre Dame campus. Copies of the participants' papers will not be available
before the conference.

Updated information on the conference can be found at'sblackbox.html

No hotel rooms have been reserved for those attenting the conference. Rooms
will probabaly be available at the Morris Inn (across the street from the
Center for Continuing Education) and at the Jamison Inn (five minutes by
car from the Center). Those who wish to make room reservations are advised
to do so as soon as possible.

Morris Inn: 219-631-2000

Jamison Inn: 219-277-9682


Friday, April 4th

3:30 p.m. Michael Behe's precis of the argument of Darwin's Black Box

5:00 p.m. Reception

6:00 p.m. Dinner

8:00 p.m. David Haig
"Evolutionary Mousetraps and Reducible Complexity"

Saturday, April 5th

9:00 a.m. Daniel Dennett
"The Case of the Tell-Tale Traces: A Mystery Solved; A
Skyhook Grounded"

10:00 a.m. 15-minute break

10:15 a.m. Behe's reply to Dennett and Haig

10:45 a.m. Final comments from each of the participants (five minutes

11:00 a.m General discussion and questions from audience

12:30 p.m. Close of conference