Customer Review

2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars brilliant little book, 12 Sept. 2010
This review is from: Science and Religion: A Very Short Introduction (Very Short Introductions) (Paperback)
If you're thinking about the relationship between science and religion this is a fun and gently persuasive guide to the issues that succeeds in complicating any lazy "science vs religion" construal of the interaction.

Dixon's book, as you might have guessed, is basically a tour of the big questions in the debate. Dixon has a knack for raising big themes in a a fun way. The chapter on how science has been used to promote moral agendas does this nicely. Dixon mentions a pamphlet warning of the perils of onanism, which reports the ruinous effects of self-abuse on a person's mind and body.

Dixon's demolition job of the Intelligent Design movement is worth the price alone. Dixon traces the tendency of its proponents to hop from one "irreducibly complex" phenomenon to the next. Behe and co tend to focus on what is currently a problem in area in scientific research, only to jump to another when the mystery starts to unravel. They once talked about biochemical cascades, now they talk about the bacterial flagellum motor. In addition to exposing this dodgy use of difficulties in current research, Dixon also illuminatingly discusses the cultural forces driving what is really an American thing.
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