Books that Changed Humanity is a book club with a difference.
Each month, the Humanities Research Centre hosts an expert from one of a variety of disciplines, who will introduce and lead the discussion of a major historical text. All of these texts, which are drawn from a variety of cultural traditions, has had a formative influence on society and humanity. The series aims to highlight and revisit those books which have informed the way we understand ourselves, both individually and collectively, as human beings.
The series aims to bring together readers from all backgrounds and vocations. Individuals from beyond and within the university community are warmly invited to come, listen, and share their thoughts about some great works of literature over a friendly glass of wine. Though the events will be casual in nature, RSVP is essential, both for catering purposes and for the distribution of preliminary reading materials for each text.
In our third event, Professor Iain McCalman (Professorial Research Fellow at the University of Sydney; Director of the HRC from 1995-2002) will introduce and discuss On the Origin of Species by Means of Natural Selection, written by Charles Darwin--the father of evolutionary biology--and published in 1859.
Professor Iain McCalman is an award-winning professor of history and the humanities at the University of Sydney. His 2009 book, Darwin’s Armada (Penguin) won three prizes and was the basis of the TV series, Darwin’s Brave New World. He is a Fellow of three Learned Academies and is a former President of the Australian Academy of the Humanities. He was Director of the Humanities Research Centre, ANU, from 1995-2002 and won the inaugural Vice-Chancellor’s Prize at ANU for Teaching Excellence. He is a former Federation Fellow and currently a Research Professor in history at the University of Sydney and co-Director of the Sydney Environment Institute. His new book, The Reef – A Passionate History, from Captain Cook to Climate Change, will be published by Penguin in Australia in November and by Farrar, Strauss and Giroux in the USA in May 2014. He was made Officer of the Order of Australia in 2007 for services to history and the humanities.