18123 - History of Science and Technique

Course Unit Page

  • Teacher Marco Ciardi

  • Credits 12

  • SSD M-STO/05

  • Teaching Mode Traditional lectures

  • Language Italian

  • Course Timetable from Sep 23, 2019 to Dec 20, 2019

SDGs

This teaching activity contributes to the achievement of the Sustainable Development Goals of the UN 2030 Agenda.

Quality education Affordable and clean energy Decent work and economic growth Climate Action

Academic Year 2019/2020

Learning outcomes

The students are introduced to the critical reading of primary and secondary sources concerning the history of science and technology, in relation to the philosophical and literary culture, and to the political, social and institutional context of their time.

Course contents

First lesson: 23 settembre 2019

Course Location:

Via Zamboni, 38, AULA IV. Monday: 11-13 am. - Thursday: 11-13 am. - Friday: 11-13 am.

Course Title: Science, magic, and imagination

What is science? Where is the boundary between science, pseudoscience and magic? What is the role of imagination in the construction of scientific knowledge? How can specialization and global vision coexist within science? What are the relationships between science, technology, literature, movies and comics? The first part of the course will be focused on the relationships between science, magic and fantasy, through an historical path aimed to understand the evolution of scientific knowledge since the 17th Century. The second part of the course (second module) will be focused on the different kinds of sources (historical, scientific, philosophical, etc.), used by the authors of novels, poems, movies, comics and videogames.

Contents of the first module:
Lessons 1-3: Introduction to the course. Science and Magic, Science and Imagination, Science and Pseudoscience, Science and Literature.
Lessons 4-6: The Astronomical Revolution. Galileo Galilei between Science and Literature. Alchemy and Chemistry, the search of the Philosopher's Stone and Isaac Newton. Visionaries and Prophets.
Lessons 7-9: Geographical Discoveries, Travel literature, Coleridge and the Rime of the Ancient Mariner, Mary Shelley and Frankenstein.
Lessons 10-12: The Discovery of Time, Darwin and Evolution, Earthquakes and Catastrophes. Myth of Atlantis and Drift of the Continents.
Lessons: 13-15: Human Sciences, Anthropology, Education and Specialization, Environment, Global Warming and Energy Resources.
Contents of the second module:
Lessons 1-3: How to make a power point (this topic will be developed within the whole second part of the course).
Lessons: 4-6: Science and Literature, Science Fiction and Fantasy.
Lessons: 7-9: Science and Movie World.
Lessons: 10-12: Science, Comics, Videogames.
Lessons: 13-15: Power point presentations by foreign students.

Readings/Bibliography

Only for foreign students.

ATTENDING STUDENTS

For the first part of the course (also addressed to the students of 8493 -ANTROPOLOGIA, RELIGIONI, CIVILTA' ORIENTALI (L) (12152 - STORIA DELLA SCIENZA E DELLA TECNICA (1)

1) M. Ciardi, Terra. Storia di un'idea, Roma-Bari, Laterza, 2013.

2) M. Ciardi, Galileo e Harry Potter. La magia può aiutare la scienza?, Roma, Carocci, 2014.

Full program (12 CFU)

1) M. Ciardi, Terra. Storia di un'idea, Roma-Bari, Laterza, 2013.

2) M. Ciardi, Galileo e Harry Potter. La magia può aiutare la scienza?, Roma, Carocci, 2014.

3) P. Rossi, Francis Bacon: from Magic to Science, Chicago: University of Chicago Press, 1978.

or (only for Spanish Students): M. Ciardi, Ciencia y creencias : historias de éxitos e ilusiones, Barcelona, 2016.

Foreign students do not have to write papers for the exam. They will be required to make a power point.

NON-ATTENDING STUDENTS

6 CFU

1) M. Ciardi, Terra. Storia di un'idea, Roma-Bari, Laterza, 2013.

2) M. Ciardi, Galileo e Harry Potter. La magia puo' aiutare la scienza?, Roma, Carocci, 2014.

3) P. Rossi, Bambini, sogni, furori: tre lezioni di storia delle idee, Milano, Feltrinelli, 2001

12 CFU

1) M. Ciardi, Terra. Storia di un'idea, Roma-Bari, Laterza, 2013.

2) M. Ciardi, Galileo e Harry Potter. La magia puo' aiutare la scienza?, Roma, Carocci, 2014.

3) Paolo Rossi, Francis Bacon: from Magic to Science, Chicago: University of Chicago Press, 1978.

or (only for Spanish Students): M. Ciardi, Ciencia y creencias : historias de éxitos e ilusiones, Barcelona, 2016.

4) H. G. Wells, The War of the Worlds, London, Collins Classic, 2017.

Foreign students do not have to write papers for the exam. They will be required to make a power point.


 

Teaching methods

Teaching methods may vary in relation to the number, requests and interests of students. They will include traditional lectures, open discussions, and presentation of papers by the students. Course attendance is strongly recommended.

Assessment methods

The exam will take the form of an oral discussion and the student will be assessed according to the knowledge he has acquired, his ability to provide a clear summary of the topics covered and his critical handling of the material. He will be expected to refer to both the exam bibliography and the texts read and discussed during the lectures.

The assessment will concentrate particularly on the skill displayed by the student in handling the sources and material in the exam bibliography and his ability to find and use information and examples to illustrate and correlate the various themes and problems addressed in the course.

Top marks will be awarded to a student displaying an overall understanding of the topics discussed during the lectures, combined with a critical approach to the material and a confident and effective use of the appropriate terminology.
Average marks will be awarded to a student who has memorized the main points of the material and is able to summarise them satisfactorily and provide an effective critical commentary, while failing to display a complete command of the appropriate terminology. A student will be deemed to have failed the exam if he displays significant errors in his understanding and failure to grasp the overall outlines of the subject, together with a poor command of the appropriate terminology.

Evaluation levels:

30 cum laude: excellent performance showing soundness of knowledge, rich discursive articulation, appropriate expression, interest of critical contribution;

30: Excellent performance, complete, and appropriate knowledge, well-articulated and appropriately expressed, with interesting critical contributions;

29-27: Good performance, more than satisfactory knowledge, correct expression.

26-24: Standard performance, essential knowledge, but not comprehensive and / or not always correctly expressed;

23-21: Sufficient performance, general but superficial knowledge; often inappropriate expression and/or confused articulation of speech;

20-18: Poor performance, sufficient expression and articulation of speech with significant gaps;

< 18: Insufficient performance, knowledge absent or very incomplete, lack of orientation in the discipline, poor and seriously flawed expression.

Teaching tools

Teaching tools will include power points, web sources. 

Office hours

See the website of Marco Ciardi