Lectures

Faith in Nature: Noah’s Flood and the Development of Geology

Faith in Nature: Noah’s Flood and the Development of Geology

Geologist David Montgomery explores the interface of science and religion through flood stories from cultures around the world. 

Montgomery investigates the ever-changing nature of truth and how the work of early scientists, theologians, and natural philosophers—which we often assume to be at odds—actually led to important developments in their fields. While offering a robust defense of scientific inquiry, he takes us through the history of the polarized perspectives of science and creationism to show how religion shaped science and how science, in turn, influenced theology.

This lecture is free and open to the public. 


David Montgomery is a Professor of Earth and Space Sciences at University of Washington, Seattle and a MacArthur fellow. His areas of focus have included how landslides and glacial erosion influence the height of mountains, how rivers originate and shape the landscape, and how human modification of river channels affects aquatic ecosystems, among other probing questions about the Earth’s surface. Most recently, he is the author of The Rocks Don't Lie: A Geologist Investigates Noah's Flood and Dirt.  

Photo credit John D. & Catherine T. MacArthur FoundationPhoto credit John D. & Catherine T. MacArthur FoundationMontgomery’s field studies have taken him throughout the Pacific Northwest, his home and research base, to the Himalayas, the Andes, and the canyons of Mars (via data from NASA’s Mars Orbiter Laser Altimeter). He received a BS (1984) from Stanford University and a PhD (1991) from the University of California, Berkeley. He has been affiliated with the University of Washington since 1991, where he is currently a professor of geomorphology in the Department of Earth and Space Sciences. His numerous articles have appeared in such journals as ScienceNature, and Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences USA.