This site is not maintained. Click here for the new website of Richard Dawkins.

The Greatest Show on Earth, Review

Number 11 in our counting down to our paperback of the year is Dawkin’s assertive debunking of creationism. Read the first chapter here

his year, the UK’s only award exclusively for paperbacks is judged by a panel led by Ian Rankin. Over the coming weeks we will reveal our 12 shortlisted books, counting down to the winner on December 11. Richard Dawkins wrote this to close a gap in his output. This was to set out explicitly and in detail the evidence for evolution. Extraordinarily, 150 years after Charles Darwin’s seminal work, evolution is contested and science education disrupted on ideological grounds. Creationism and intelligent design are organised obscurantism. There is nothing left of them once Dawkins has finished. It is a magnificent book. To deploy science against risible ignorance may seem overwrought, but Darwin’s work on evolution, and its mechanism of natural selection and random mutation, has a fair claim to be the most important intellectual feat in history. His findings are widely misunderstood, and insufficiently appreciated for their scope and the extent to which they have been confirmed. Dawkins’ book is far from a narrow polemic. It is a sustained, elegant and learned account of the logic of scientific discovery. Dawkins has a talent for finding illuminating analogies while scrupulously advising also on their limits. His book is an impeccably constructed argument. He starts by disposing of the fatuous objection that evolution is “just a theory” and gently introduces the idea of natural selection by discussing artificial selection. Any thoughtful reader would be enthused by the clarity of Dawkins’ prose and the weight of evidence for evolution.

The Greatest Show on Earth (rrp £8.99) will be available for £2.99 from next week when you buy The Times or The Sunday Times at participating WHSmith stores.

Follow the Times WH Smith Paperback of the Year shortlist at thetimes.co.uk/books

Source

TAGGED: BOOKS, EVOLUTION, RICHARD DAWKINS


RELATED CONTENT

Planet of the apes

Stephen Cave - Financial Times Comments

What we really know about our evolutionary past – and what we don’t

Magic at Every Age A review of Richard...

Stacy L. Memering,Viviana A.... Comments

Magic at Every Age
A review of Richard Dawkins, The Magic of Reality: How We Know What’s Really True

CCI: DAVE MCKEAN ON DAWKINS, CHRIST AND...

Andy Liegl - CBR (Comic Book... Comments

In front of a packed crowd during his panel titled "My Two Years with Dawkins, Christ and a Small Crab Called Eric" at Comic-Con International in San Diego, artist, writer and indie filmmaker Dave McKean recounted two recent life events on radically opposite ends of the philosophical spectrum: an all-ages book he illustrated with scientist and Atheism proponent Richard Dawkins called "The Magic of Reality," and a film he shot starring Michael Sheen in Port Talbot, Wales called "The Gospel of Us," a modern day interpretation of "The Passion" story chronicling Jesus Christ's final days of life on Earth.

Redeeming God in Canaan

Doctor Science - Obsidian Wings Comments

Last weekend I noticed two religion blogs, one Jewish and one evangelical (though not fundamentalist) Christian, discussing the same passages in the Bible: the ones commanding the Israelites to fight, slaughter, enslave, and dispossess the Canaanite inhabitants of the Land of Israel. To commit genocide, in fact.

The Magic of Reality by Richard Dawkins

Oliver Kamm - The Times Comments

Review of The Magic of Reality

Dear believers: Blasphemy is good for...

John Gray - The Globe and Mail Comments

A review of The Future of Blasphemy Speaking of the Sacred in an Age of Human Rights
by Austin Dacey

MORE

MORE BY OLIVER KAMM

The Magic of Reality by Richard Dawkins

Oliver Kamm - The Times Comments

Review of The Magic of Reality

Dawkins v God - stop the fight

Oliver Kamm 60 Comments

MORE

Comments

Comment RSS Feed

Please sign in or register to comment