How to know the world is a problem all humans contend with. Magic, religion and science are all ways of thinking about and acting on the world. Of the three, science would appear to be far the most successful, and yet scientific advances have not done away with magic or religion. How can we explain this interest in the mysterious and the ineffable, in the forces – natural and otherwise – that apparently control our lives and our destinies? Human beings have always used technology to extend the reach and capacities of the human body, and to enhance understanding, and yet we frequently use technology to seek enchantment, tell tall tales and create imaginary worlds.
On 3 December 2011, Henrietta L. Moore talked at the ‘Holy Quarks’ Symposium @ the Wellcome Trust. In her talk entitled ‘Technologies of Enchantment: Magic, world and being’ she discussed why humans have need for mystery and enchantment to make sense of life, how the world works and what makes us who we are.
The mp3 of her talk is now online available on the website of the Wellcome Collection (link opens in new window)