“The Man Who Loved China”

24 September 2008
Royal College of Physicians

The Inaugural lecture of the APML was given by Simon Winchester OBE at the Royal College of Physicians in London on the 24th September 2008. Entitled The Man Who Loved China it introduced the extraordinary story of Joseph Needham, best  remembered for his massive achievement embodied in the continuing Science and Civilisation in China series, the successive parts of which have been published by Cambridge University Press since 1954. This great work was planned as a history of science, technology and medicine in China, seen in its fullest social and intellectual context, and illuminated by a deep and sympathetic understanding of the cultures of both East and West. However the speaker has had unique access to diaries and personal papers and was able to introduce the audience to Needham, the man. We learnt of his love for naturism and Morris Dancing, the joy he experienced learning to use the Chinese script, and much much more.

The evening was chaired by Professor Lisa Jardine CBE and was preceeded with a reception.

Marcus Risdell (APML Chairman 2008)

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