Category: Biography

New biogeography book argues for chance survivals, not continental drift …

… based on molecular clock. So, “improbable, unpredictable,” meet “highly uncertain.” more

Fossils of Australasian tree unexpectedly found in South America

The giant coniferous tree’s fossils date from 52 million years ago. Current representatives of the tropical Agathis no longer thrive in (now) cold, wet Patagonia more

What are the Odds?

An expert in “frog evolution” has demonstrated that frogs in different continents “evolved” the same sorts of characteristics. Now just ask yourself: what are the odds that “evolution,” which works via random processes, would “evolve” the same kinds of characteristics on different continents? Yet, that is what our evolutionary biologist friends would ask us to […] more

“Dawkins believes what he wishes to believe”

Richard Dawkins’ autobiography has been reviewed in the London Spectator: http://www.spectator.co.uk/books/9025021/an-appetite-for-wonder-by-richard-dawkins-review/. The reviewer’s verdict? “He relies just as much on a leap of faith as those religious believers he so keenly affects to despise. His theory also cannot explain how those selfish genes eventually came to evolve the one species on earth which is marked out […] more

From Telic Thoughts, we learn more about non-Darwinian biologist John Davison (1928-2012)

This obituary implies that he had discovered at the end that there is a country for old men. more

Was Isaac Newton (1642-1727) a bad scientist because he believed the world ends in 2060?

What would become of Newton at the hands of a British science czar like Beddington who advocates that scientists be “grossly intolerant”? more

Must-see Vid: Darwin’s heretic — Alfred Russel Wallace

A few months back, we looked at the story of Wallace’s views here and again here. Now, thanks to an online premiere, here’s the movie (HT: ENV): embedded by Embedded VideoYouTube Direkt Relax, enjoy, and discuss. END _____________ F/N: to understand Wallace, have a read of his major book published in 1910 ff, The World […] more

Lynn Margulis (March 5, 1938-November 22, 2011)

Best known for her theory of endosymbiosis. more

New Book on Alfred Russel Wallace and the ID Connection

    In my new book, Alfred Russel Wallace: A Rediscovered Life, I take the reader on a journey from 19-century England, to the wilds of the Amazon River Basin, to the Malay Archipelago, and back to the highly charged scientific climate of Victorian London. Wallace’s story is one of discovery, from shocking Charles Darwin with his […] more

Leigh Van Valen (1935-2010)

Leigh Van Valen — an evolutionary biologist for whom the word “polymath” is entirely appropriate — died this past weekend, after a long illness. Leigh was a student of both Theodosius Dobzhansky and G.G. Simpson at Columbia University, and spent most of the rest of his career at the University of Chicago, where he served […] more

Himmelfarb on Darwin: An Enduring Perspective After 50 Years, Part 4

Since writing Darwin and the Darwinian Revolution, Gertrude Himmelfarb has moved on to treat a wide range of topics. Nevertheless, her influence as an especially cogent historian of the man and his theory continues. A few have taken notice. Margaret A. Fay, for example, mentions her “insightful and lucid analysis.”1Philosopher/theologian Edward T. Oakes, S.J., PhD, wrote: “I […] more

Himmelfarb on Darwin: An Enduring Perspective After 50 Years, Part 2

In part 1 it was demonstrated that Gertrude Himmelfarb’s Darwin and the Darwinian Revolution is the book Darwinists love to hate. In order to understand why a rather detailed examination is required. Of course, this is a big biography and an exhaustive account cannot be given here, but a summary investigation will make the source of the […] more

Himmelfarb on Darwin: An Enduring Perspective After 50 Years, Part 1

Darwin and the darwinian revolution

A few months ago The Panda’s Thumb used the occasion of Irving Kristol’s death on September 18th to denigrate Gertrude Himmelfarb’s 50 year-old  Darwin and the Darwinian Revolution as a “terrible book . . . demonstrating a lack of understanding of biology and a warped view of Darwin’s influence.” The article, written by Jeffrey Shallit, glibly casts aspersions on the late Kristol’s […] more

The Darwin Myth by Benjamin Wiker is a Must Read!

Benjamin Wiker’s   The Darwin Myth  was first available on Amazon.com on June 2; my book on natural selection’s co-discoverer Alfred Russel Wallace, titled Alfred Russel Wallace’s Theory of Intelligent Evolution, first appeared on Amazon on February 16. My aim in pointing this out is only to say that had Dr. Wiker been well ahead of me instead of a little […] more

Book on Alfred Russel Wallace now available!

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Published by  Erasmus Press, Alfred Russel Wallace’s Theory of Intelligent Evolution: How Wallace’s World of Life Challenged Darwinism is now available purchase book.    In this book I provide a context and perspective with which to analyze the intellectual legacy of famed 19th-century naturalist, Alfred Russel Wallace.  In it two principle themes are argued: 1) Darwin’s theory of […] more

‘Lincoln and Darwin — Live For One Night Only!’ Now On-Line

I am pleased to say that an audio version (MP3) of my play ‘Lincoln and Darwin — Live for One Night Only!’ is now on-line at ‘The Sci-Phi Show’, courtesy of Jason Rennie, the Sydneyside philosophical broadcaster. Here it is, just in time for Lincoln and Darwin’s 200th birthday (tomorrow). The play runs to 85 […] more

Saving Darwin’s Soul: Does His 21st Century Fate Rest on Fighting 19th Century Battles?

This week marks the publication of the Darwin book that has so far received the most advance publicity in the UK, Darwin’s Sacred Cause: Race, Slavery and the Quest for Human Origins, by Adrian Desmond and James Moore (Allen Lane). Desmond and Moore, both together and separately, have written some of the best histories of […] more

Vatican to exclude ID & Evolutionists from Origins conference

The Vatican apparently seeks to understand biological evolution, as long as speakers do not address the issue of origins whether advocates of Intelligent Design, Creationists, or Evolutionists. That appears to a priori exclude the foundational issue of causation. It also appears to assume that papers on “biological evolution” do not have any unstated assumptions on […] more

Science or Monkey Business?: A Review of Roy Davies’ The Darwin Conspiracy

Imagine if you will a rather pathetic little boy oppressed by a domineering father and overshadowed by older sisters assuming maternal roles that directed his every move.  Under such conditions it’s not surprising that certain survival strategies would be employed by the boy to establish his place in the family pecking order.  Thus it was, according […] more

John Scotus Eriugena – a 9th century advocate of “intelligent design”

While cleric Michael Heller disparages Intelligent Design, Chuck Colson observes: “John Scotus Eriugena is considered perhaps the first proponent of “intelligent design.” See: Learning from the Irish, Chuck Colson “Observe the forms and beauties of sensible things,” he wrote, “and comprehend the Word of God in them. If you do so, the truth will reveal […] more

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