Title Page, Copyright

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pp. 1-4

CONTENTS

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pp. 5-10

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LECTURES FOR THE 21ST CENTURY. “INTRODUCTION TO THE SCIENCE ANDCULTURAL IDENTITY OF BELGIUM”

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pp. 11-12

This volume is intended to be the first in a new series of science communication. For thirteen years now, students from every faculty of K.U.Leuven have been able to attend the interfaculty course “Lectures for the 21st century” in Dutch. Each year, thirteen very different themes are offered, each with a different perspective. This...

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LINGUISTIC JUSTICE FOR EUROPE, BELGIUM AND THE WORLD

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pp. 13-36

The early years of the 21st century are witnessing an unprecedented phenomenon. In Europe, Belgium and throughout the world, competence in English is spreading at a speed never reached by any language in human history (see Appendix for some data on recent trends in the European Union and in Belgium). This...

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THE HISTORIC AND THE CURRENT POLITICAL DEVELOPMENT IN BELGIUM FOR KING AND LASAGNE

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pp. 37-62

In the summer and autumn of 2007, the international media published a considerable amount of articles discussing the possible or even immanent end of the state of Belgium. The attention of the international media was not surprising, as Belgium, after the 2007...

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FAIR PLAY: ITS ORIGINS AND MEANINGS IN SPORT AND SOCIETY

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pp. 63-80

The traditional forms of games and recreational activities of 'Merry old England’ (pre-industrial Britain) were often linked to the church calendar and had a highly ritualised character. Their rules varied widely from one place to another. These traditional physical contests were often chaotic and violent in nature, with...

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MORE FOOD, LESS WATER

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pp. 81-101

Only 2.5 percent of the total water volume on earth is fresh water. The rest is salty water. 75 percent of the earth’s fresh water is contained in the ice caps and in glaciers, and another 14 percent is located in deep, highly inaccessible aquifers. Consequently, less...

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4.5 BILLION YEARS OF GLOBAL CHANGE

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pp. 103-126

The present ‘state of health’ of Planet Earth is often illustrated in the media by a number of dramatised ‘icons’: the waning glaciers in Kilimanjaro, the collapsing fronts of Antarctic glaciers, retreating Alpine glaciers, drowning Pacific islands, and the threatened polar bear. These icons reveal, however, that man has a very static...

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CULTURAL IDENTITY AND THE PRIMACY OF THE POLITICAL

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pp. 127-164

As a philosopher, it is not my duty to proclaim political solutions, to act as a judge and say who is right, or even to answer questions that have dominated societal discussions for the past decade (and which will undoubtedly continue to do so for many years to come). What I do want to do is analyse these questions and...

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China and Global Environmental Governance

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pp. 165-185

Recent debates about China’s economic growth and its further integration in political processes of globalisation have increasingly focussed on the externalities of this evolution. Together with the recognition of the exceptional economic performance of the country, attention is being paid to problems of social inequality,...

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THE STATUS OF LIBERTY, FROM ROMAN CIVIL LAW TO HUMAN RIGHTS

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pp. 187-204

The history of Roman law is in the first place the history of civil war. Civil law was a part of antique Roman law, or, more precisely, the law that determined the private relations of soldiers and army veterans. It was full of privileges. For centuries people tried to obtain that privileged status, but without the burden of undertaking...

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FROM BIOINFORMATICS TO SYSTEMS BIOLOGY

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pp. 205-235

In a famous one-page article in Nature in 1953, Francis Crick and ames Watson described the chemical structure of DNA for the first time1. Since that day, scientific research in molecular biology and biotechnology has exploded. Our knowledge about the genetic and biochemical processes in the cell is increasing exponentially....

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ALZHEIMER'S DISEASE: FUNDAMENTAL RESEARCH PAVES THE WAY FOR THERAPEUTICS

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pp. 237-259

Until recently, the discovery of a successful drug wasn’t actually the logical end point of the elucidation of a disease process. Rather, it was dependent on major doses of luck and coincidences. One of ‘serendipity’: ‘the effect by which you accidentally discover something fortunate, especially while looking for something else entirely’. A world-famous example is Fleming’s discovery of ...

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ART AND CULTURAL IDENTITYOF THE LOW COUNTRIES

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pp. 261-284

Cultural identity is a hot issue in Europe. This is due to the great changes that have taken place there recently. The Treaties of Schengen and Maastricht have caused migration waves, and cultures tend to come into contact and conflict more easily. These contacts have strengthened the consciousness of cultural identity...

Contributors

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pp. 285-285