Darwinism Evolution Intelligent Design

Steve Fuller’s DISSENT OVER DESCENT

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The theme of descent and dissent, which has been a theme on this blog and in my book UNCOMMON DISSENT: INTELLECTUALS WHO FIND DARWINISM UNCONVINCING, has been picked up by Steve Fuller in his new book DISSENT OVER DESCENT: EVOLUTION’S 500-YEAR WAR ON INTELLIGENT DESIGN.

AMAZON.UK description: “If you think Intelligent Design Theory (IDT) is merely the respectable face of Christian fundamentalism, and Evolution the only sensible scientific world-view, think again…IDT has driven science for 500 years. It was responsible for the 17th century’s Scientific Revolution and helped build modern histories of physics, mathematics, genetics and social science. IDT’s proponents take literally the Biblical idea that humans have been created in God’s image. This confident, even arrogant, view of humanity enabled the West to triumph in the modern era. Evolution, on the other hand, derives from more ancient, even pagan, ideas about our rootedness in nature and the transience of all life forms. It has been always more popular outside the West, and until Darwin few evolutionists were scientists. What happened to reverse these two movements’ fortunes? Steve Fuller’s brilliant revisionist history is essential reading for anyone who wants a deeper understanding of science’s most vociferous debate.”

11 Replies to “Steve Fuller’s DISSENT OVER DESCENT

  1. 1
    nullasalus says:

    Brilliant, and this is exactly what I’ve been hoping to see out of the ID camp for awhile, at least at a glance.

    The idea of a universe that is a product of design is a strong one, and scientific advances have only strengthened the view. Glad to see ID expanding beyond biology as a conceptual framework.

  2. 2
    late_model says:

    Amazon Synopsis notes:

    “Steve Fuller’s brilliant revisionist history is essential reading for anyone who wants a deeper understanding of science’s most vociferous debate.”

    Isn’t “revisionist history” typically a pejorative term like “fundamentalist” today?

    Does anyone know if Fuller an American living in Britian or a UK citizen schooled in the U.S.? It would be interesting to know what lens he has on in this debate.

  3. 3
    jaredl says:

    It sounds as though he’s speaking from a position roughly analogous to your “Darwinism as Alchemy” writing.

  4. 4
    antg says:

    The book description mentions evolutionism as being derived from pagan ideas. I have often been struck by comments from people like Richard Dawkins and others who speak of a sense of awe for the universe derived from Science. Dawkins has also claimed that in the absence of religious worship, people would perhaps have sung odes to evolution! To me, paganism is the logical endpoint when evolution ceases to be a mere scientific theory and begins to become an all-encompassing worldview.

    I look forward to seeing how Steve Fuller expands on this.

  5. 5
    antg says:

    PS: to those in the know, any ideas if he is planning any speaking engagements relating to the launch of this book?

  6. 6
    Bob O'H says:

    late_model – Fuller’s an American living in the UK.

    But be warned, Fuller apparently doesn’t understand ID:

    IDT’s proponents take literally the Biblical idea that humans have been created in God’s image.

    The same text appears at NHBS, so I assume it’s come from the publisher, which suggests to me that Fuller had some say in this (but I’m happy to be corrected if wrong).

    Bob

  7. 7
    late_model says:

    Bob O’H – Thank you for the info on Fuller. He is probably then well aware of the long history in rejecting NDE here in the good ol’ USA not just recent events.

    It would also seem that the comment about the biblical idea that humans have been created in God’s image is related to the 500 year history of dissent. This appears in contrast to pagan ideas which would not necessarily see humans having any special meaning.

    I don’t think this reference is necessarily aimed at recent IDT but a very broad historical look at IDT.

  8. 8
    Joseph says:

    Yes Bob O’H I noticed that also.

    However it does not say that ID says that.

    And it is a given that at least some ID proponents do think that way.

  9. 9
    jerry says:

    If anyone is interested, Allen MacNeill has two long posts about Steve Fuller on his site. Here they are

    http://evolutionlist.blogspot......html#links

    http://evolutionlist.blogspot......html#links

  10. 10
    StephenB says:

    —–Jerry:

    While I think Steve Fuller is a good guy, his attempt to integrate social constructivism with intelligent design ia a bit bizarre. Social constructivists belive that we CREATE truth and knowledge, while common sense and experience teach us that truth is an objective reality that we must DISCOVER. What is the point of “following where the evidence leads” if the journery takes us back into oursevles?

    Granted, Steve does a good job of explaining that deisgn thinking was responsible the emergence of modern science. Still, I think that his subjectivist world view causes him to stop short of realizing that design is something outside of us that we really can “detect.” Under the circumstances, I think it compromises his ability to defend ID with sufficient force.

  11. 11

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