Monday, September 28, 2009

Banned, Censored, Challenged: On the Origin of Species

On the Origin of Species was published by English naturalist Charles Darwin in 1859. Darwin had anticipated the storm that his work might create. He dropped an idea bomb on the world and the aftershocks continue to this day. The work was banned in Yugoslavia in 1935 and in Greece in 1937. From 1925 to 1967, the book was banned in the state of Tennessee. Adolf Hitler may also have had it in for Darwin. In Die B├╝cherei, the Nazi guideline for which books to remove from libraries, it includes:

6. Writings of a philosophical and social nature whose content deals with the false scientific enlightenment of primitive Darwinism and Monism (H�ckel)

On the Origin of Species explains how organisms change over time. It was an early idea of evolution and there was a lot that Darwin didn't know. He didn't have radiometric dating, fossils, didn't understand DNA. Evolution as it is understood today is different from "Darwinism". However, Charles Darwin deserves his place among the greatest scientists of our time. To those who resist new and challenging ideas,his masterpiece deserves its place in the flames.

I'm looking for a beautiful Easton Press edition for my shelf.


Amy (Uncensored) said...

Great that you reviewed this book in time for the book's anniversary coming up! Especially since Kirk Cameron and his group are "re-publishing" it with a new fifty page intro that attempts to dispute evolution and connect it to Hitler. Yeah. He's that crazy. Thanks for such a timely and relevant post! Rock on.

Secretsauce said...

Correction: it was the teaching of evolution in schools that was banned from 1925-1967 in Tennessee (the Butler Act) ... not the Origin of Species.

It is incorrect to say that the book was banned.

Anonymous said...

Had you ever considered that middle school kids would be reading this, when it was published? Because it definitely is.