Tuesday, November 24, 2009

charles darwin's "the origins of species" is 150 years old today!

charles darwin's "on the origins of species" was published in england, on november 24, 1859 - 150 years ago today. the full title included the subtitle: "by means of natural selection, or the preservation of favoured races in the struggle for life. it was at the time, and remains so today, a seminal piece of scientific literature. in 1872, the title was shortened to simply, "the origin of species."

darwin wrote the book for a general audience. one of his most ardent followers was, astonishingly, none other than theodore roosevelt! douglas brinkley detailed the impact of darwinism on roosevelt's evolving role as an "environmentalist" - to ape a popular, but overused term today - in his book, "the wilderness warrior: theodore roosevelt and the crusade for america."

80+ years past the scopes "monkey" trial, darwin is still the focal point of continuing criticism by fundamentalists intent on ignoring his research in favor of creationism - or it's more palatable, but misleading moniker: "intelligent design." if that's your cup of tea - fine. just don't try to pass it off as science - or even a crude approximation thereof!

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