Bill Nye speaks at Lewis & Clark College, Portland, OR, October 25, 2014 (Photo: Lewis & Clark College)
Last month, my wife and son were fortunate to see Bill Nye the Science Guy give a talk at Lewis & Clark College here in Portland, OR. This was exciting for my wife, having watched many episodes of his show growing up, and great for my son to hear from one of our leading advocates for science. His talk was wide ranging, from his own life story to climate change and his experience debating creationist Ken Ham last February.
That debate led Bill Nye to write a book all about evolution:
Bill Nye, Undeniable: Evolution and the Science of Creation (New York: St. Martin’s Press, 2014), 320 pp.
Publisher’s description Sparked by a controversial debate in February 2014, Bill Nye has set off on an energetic campaign to spread awareness of evolution and the powerful way it shapes our lives. In Undeniable: Evolution and the Science of Creation, he explains why race does not really exist; evaluates the true promise and peril of genetically modified food; reveals how new species are born, in a dog kennel and in a London subway; takes a stroll through 4.5 billion years of time; and explores the new search for alien life, including aliens right here on Earth. With infectious enthusiasm, Bill Nye shows that evolution is much more than a rebuttal to creationism; it is an essential way to understand how nature works—and to change the world. It might also help you get a date on a Saturday night.
I look forward to the copy of Undeniable that is on its way to me now! You can find the book through various vendors from the publisher’s page, here.
In the meantime, check out this post on Brain Pickings: Bill Nye Reads a Brilliant, Creationism-Busting Passage from His New Book on Evolution
Robert Richards: ‘All that is most beautiful’: Darwin’s Theory of Morality and Its Normative Validity
Peter Bowler: Imagining a World without Darwin
Darwin, God, & Design – Evolution & the Battle for America’s Soul
Darwin’s Revolution: From Natural Theology to Natural Selection
Videos of other lectures here, conference information here.
Another great excuse to use the Darwin facepalm gif:
I think this illustrated look at science denial complements Donald Prothero’s Reality Check: How Science Deniers Threaten Our Future (my review) very well:
Darryl Cunningham, How to Fake a Moon Landing: Exposing the Myths of Science Denial (New York: Abrams ComicArts, 2013), 176 pp.
Climate change, fracking, evolution, vaccinations, homeopathy, chiropractic, even the moon landing – all hut-button controversies to which author-artist Darryl Cunningham applies cool, critical analysis. Using comics, photographs, diagrams, and highly readable text, Cunningham lays out the why and wherefores to expose the myths of science denial. Timely and well researched, How to Fake a Moon Landing is a graphic milestone of investigative science journalism.
Thought I’d share this Twitter exchange from this evening, and it’s a great excuse to use the Darwin facepalm gif.
A new book about the Scopes Trail in 1920s America was recently published:
Adam R. Shapiro, Trying Biology: The Scopes Trial, Textbooks, and the Antievolution Movement in American Schools (Chicago: University of Chicago Press, 2013), 200 pp.
In Trying Biology, Adam R. Shapiro convincingly dispels many conventional assumptions about the 1925 Scopes “monkey” trial. Most view it as an event driven primarily by a conflict between science and religion. Countering this, Shapiro shows the importance of timing: the Scopes trial occurred at a crucial moment in the history of biology textbook publishing, education reform in Tennessee, and progressive school reform across the country. He places the trial in this broad context—alongside American Protestant antievolution sentiment—and in doing so sheds new light on the trial and the historical relationship of science and religion in America.
For the first time we see how religious objections to evolution became a prevailing concern to the American textbook industry even before the Scopes trial began. Shapiro explores both the development of biology textbooks leading up to the trial and the ways in which the textbook industry created new books and presented them as “responses” to the trial. Today, the controversy continues over textbook warning labels, making Shapiro’s study—particularly as it plays out in one of America’s most famous trials—an original contribution to a timely discussion.
A review in Times Higher Education by Simon Underdown, here.
Shapiro started a blog to accompany this book, here.