Archive for April, 2012

Evolution at a Tipping Point, Again

The publication of The Origin of Species by Charles Darwin in 1859 was a tipping point in the history of evolution. Darwin proposed natural selection as a framework to study the evolution of species−the first wave of modern evolution.

The next tipping point in the history of evolution occurred at the turn of the twentieth century following the re-discovery of Gregor Mendel’s work on genetics by Hugo de Vries and Carl Correns in 1900, rescuing fragments of Darwinism from the brink of extinction. Mendel’s laws of genetics – separate and independent genes – replaced the nineteenth century concept of blending genetics espoused by Darwin. Continue Reading

Tennessee, Darwin Would Agree

By an overwhelming 3-to-1 margin, the Tennessee legislative branch reversed a stealthy slide into intellectual dogmatism following the wake of the “Scopes Monkey Trial’’ in Dayton, Tennessee, in 1925.

The Scopes Trial—formally known as The State of Tennessee v. John Thomas Scopes, was a landmark American legal case in which high school science teacher, John Scopes, was accused of violating Tennessee’s Butler Act which made it unlawful to teach evolution in any state-funded school. Continue Reading

Obama Social Darwinism Hoodwinking

Last Tuesday in addressing the American Society of Newspaper Editors on the subject of House Budget Committee chairman Paul Ryan’s new budget, President Obama fuelled yet another fire storm by accusing Republicans who backed it of practicing “thinly veiled social Darwinism”.

Declaring Ryan’s budget as social Darwinism instantaneously launched a salvo of media speculations. What was the relevance of social Darwinism to the budget process? Continue Reading

New Burtele Fossil Finding Complicates Human Evolution

A newly discovered fossil from eastern Africa further complicates theories on the evolution of humans.

In the same area where the infamous Lucy fossil was discovered by Donald Johanson and Tom Gray in 1974, a team lead by Yohannes Haile-Selassie of the Cleveland Museum of Natural History unearthed a partial foot from the Woranso-Mille area of the Afar region of Ethiopia, an area locally known as Burtele. The results were published last week in the journal Nature. Continue Reading

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Darwin, Then and Now is a journey through the most amazing story in the history of science - the history of evolution. The book encapsulates who Darwin was, what he said, and what scientists have discovered since the publication of The Origin of Species in 1859.

With over 1,000 references, Darwin Then and Now is a historical chronicle of the rise and fall of the once popular theory of biological evolution.

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