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Nota Bene July
By: Staff
Discovery Institute
July 27, 2004



Nota Bene -- The Center for Science & Culture E-Newsletter


The Center for Science & Culture . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Volume II / Issue 7 / July 30, 2004


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New books from Discovery Fellows



From Darwin to Hitler, Evolutionary Ethics, Eugenics and Racism in Germany (Palgrave MacMillan, June 2004)



"Richard Weikart's outstanding book shows in sober and convincing detail how Darwinist thinkers in Germany had developed an amoral attitude to human society, ... providing Hitler and the Nazis with a scientific justification for the policies they pursued once they came to power." -- Dr. Richard Evans, Professor of Modern History, University of Cambridge, and author of "The Coming of the Third Reich"



In this compelling and painstakingly researched work of intellectual history, Discovery Institute Fellow Richard Weikart convincingly makes the argument that Hitler built his view of ethics on Darwinian principles.



Weikart explains the revolutionary impact Darwinism had on ethics and morality. He demonstrates that many leading Darwinian biologists and social thinkers in Germany believed that Darwinism overturned traditional Judeo-Christian and Enlightenment ethics, especially those pertaining to the sacredness of human life. Many of these thinkers supported moral relativism, yet simultaneously exalted evolutionary "fitness" (especially in terms of intelligence and health) as the highest arbiter of morality. Weikart concludes that Darwinism played a key role not only in the rise of eugenics, but also in euthanasia, infanticide, abortion, and racial extermination, all ultimately embraced by the Nazis.



From Darwin to Hitler is a provocative yet balanced work that should encourage a rethinking of the historical impact that Darwinism had on the course of events in the twentieth century.



Save over 40% when you order from Discovery Institute. From Darwin to Hitler is regularly priced $59.95, but you can order your copy today for just $34.95 plus shipping and handling by calling 1-800-643-4102.




Debating Design: From Darwin to DNA (Cambridge University Press July 2004)

Is the appearance of design in organisms (as exhibited in their functional complexity) the result of purely natural forces acting without prevision or teleology? Or, does the appearance of design signify genuine prevision and teleology, and, if so, is that design empirically detectable and thus open to scientific inquiry? Here then are two of the most intriguing questions in the debate between Darwinists and design theorists.



Editors William Dembski--design proponent, Michael Ruse--Darwinist and design critic, have compiled an impressive group if prominent philosophers to provide a comprehensive, and balanced overview of the debate concerning biological origins--a controversial dialectic since Darwin published"The Origin of Species" in 1859. Invariably, the source of controversy has been "design." Four main positions have emerged in response to these questions: *Darwinism* *self-organization* *theistic evolution* *intelligent design*. The contributors to this volume define their respective positions in an accessible style, inviting readers to draw their own conclusions.



Two introductory essays furnish a historical overview of the debate. Dembski is an associate research professor in the conceptual foundations of science at Baylor University as well as a Discovery Institute senior fellow. His most important books are The Design Inference (Cambridge, 1998) and No Free Lunch (Rowman and Littleton, 2002). Michael Ruse is Lucyle T. Wekmeister Professor of Philosophy at Florida State University. He is the author of many books, including Can a Darwinian Be a Christian?: The Relationship Between Science and Religion (Cambridge, 2000).



Click here to order your copy of Debating Design from Amazon.com.




Uncommon Dissent:Intellectuals Who Find Darwinism Unconvincing (ISI Books June 2004)

Recent years have seen the rise to prominence of ever more sophisticated philosophical and scientific critiques of the ideas marketed under the name of Darwinism. In Uncommon Dissent, mathematician and philosopher William Dembski brings together essays by leading intellectuals who find one or more aspects of Darwinism unpersuasive.





Click here to read "The Myths of Darwinism" the Introduction to Uncommon Dissent



As Dembski explains, Darwinism has gathered around itself an aura of invincibility that is inhospitable to rational discussion—to say the least: "Darwinism, its proponents assure us, has been overwhelmingly vindicated. Any resistance to it is futile and indicates bad faith or worse." Indeed, those who question the Darwinian synthesis are supposed, in the famous formulation of Richard Dawkins, to be ignorant, stupid, insane, or wicked.



The hostility of dogmatic Darwinians like Dawkins has not, however, prevented the advent of a growing cadre of scholarly critics of metaphysical Darwinism, including Discovery Fellows such as Michael Behe, J. Budziszewski, Nancy Pearcey and others. The measured, thought-provoking essays in Uncommon Dissent make it increasingly obvious that these critics are not the brainwashed fundamentalist buffoons that Darwinism’s defenders suggest they are, but rather serious, skeptical, open-minded inquirers whose challenges pose serious questions about the viability of Darwinist ideology. The intellectual power of their contributions to Uncommon Dissent is bracing.



Click here to order your copy of Uncommon Dissent at Amazon.com.





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About Nota Bene
Nota Bene --Latin for 'mark well'-- is the periodic e-lert electronic newsletter for the Center for Science & Culture. The goal of Nota Bene is to quickly disseminate information regarding important events, activities and milestones related to the scientific theory of intelligent design and about efforts to fully and completely teach Darwinian evolution theory, including both its strengths and weaknesses. Please forward this e-mail to friends and family you think would be interested in this important issue.


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