Given the surprisingly recent date at which shared genealogical ancestors arise in populations, it was well worth exploring how this might fit with the age-old belief in Adam and Eve. Joshua Swamidass does this in a highly detailed and truly inter-disciplinary manner. He shows respect for all sides, sincerely wanting to find a way forward that can defuse an area of conflict. It is to be hoped that this book will motivate the more sophisticated modelling of the human population history. It may also make believers ask questions about their hierarchy of beliefs about Adam and Eve. Is the most important thing about them the time in which they existed, or something that made them objectively unique? Are they genetic ghosts, or ghostly ancestors? The book has less to say to the atheist or agnostic reader, except perhaps to convince them that Christian views of Adam and Eve could be irrelevant to objective reality, and to persuade them that there are reputable scientists who take both science and religion seriously. No doubt Joshua Swamidass will be on this year’s shortlist for the Templeton Prize.Richard Buggs, “Adam and Eve our ghostly ancestors?” at Nature Research: Ecology and Evolution Blog
The really remarkable thing is that after all this time and all that rhetoric, Adam and Eve remain a defensible idea.
See also: The Behe vs. Swamidass debate (quality vid).