The Conflict or Warfare Hypothesis
The conflict or warfare hypothesis on the
relationship between science and religion is probably still the view most
widely held among those who have not followed the recent debate in this area.
It supposes that there is a conflict in which one subject is overwhelming the
other, forcing it off its territory.
As John Brooke shows, this is a limited and
flawed way of understanding the history of the relationship between science and
religion. (See Science and Religion
(Brooke) p33-42). See also Different sciences, different
The hypothesis derives a lot of its
popularity from certain 19th Century understandings of the two subjects. It was
much furthered by two books originating in the 1870s: History of the Conflict Between Religion and Science by John
William Draper and A History of the
Warfare of Science with Theology in Christendom by Andrew Dickson White.
link | Feedback | Contributed by: Dr. Christopher Southgate
Source: God, Humanity and the Cosmos (T&T Clark, 1999)