Sure, the Olympics have the thrill of victory and the agony of defeat. But do they have the thrill of discovery (Neanderthal fashion, dinosaur armageddon)? And how about the agony of denial (Ark Encounter X 3, and even some flat-earthers)? No, no they don't. That's OK. As a reader of NCSE's blog, you get both.

+ read

A polar bear!So I’m sure you’ve been following all of this Ark Park business going on down in Kentucky. Yes, it is ridiculous, and yes, I have to admit that I was trying desperately to ignore it. As a climate change person here at NCSE, I felt sure I could leave this Ark nonsense to the evolution team.

+ read

Snippet from the title page of The Evolution of Man Scientifically Disproved

What a joy is William A. Williams’s The Evolution of Man Scientifically Disproved (1925)! Previously, I’ve discussed its use of a quotation from “Dr. Traas, a famous paleontologist” who supposedly said that the idea that humans descended from any simian species was “certainly the most foolish ever put forth by a man writing on the history of man”; Traas proved to be Oscar Fraas, with a F instead of a T, and he was writing in 1866. I’ve also discussed its use of a quotation from “W. H. Thompson,” who supposedly said that “The Darwinian theory is now rejected by the majority of biologists, as absurdly inadequate”; Thompson proved to be William Hanna Thomson, with no p, and he was talking about natural selection, not evolution in general, and he was doing so in 1911, fourteen years before Williams’s book was published. But recently I noticed a passage in The Evolution of Man Scientifically Disproved that nicely intertwines two threads of contemporary creationist silliness.

+ read

Eberhard Fraas, via Wikimedia CommonsI’m looking at Oscar Fraas’s Vor der Sündfluth! Eine Geschichte der Urwelt (1866)—that’s Before the Deluge! A History of the Ancient World—because, ultimately, I tend to be suspicious. Seeing a quotation in William A. Williams’s The Evolution of Man Scientifically Disproved (1925) from “a famous paleontologist” identified only as “Dr.

+ read

Oscar Fraas, via Wikimedia CommonsThe title of the present post really ought to be “Tracking Dr. Fraas”—or perhaps “Fracking Dr. Fraas” for the alliteration?—for, as I explained in part 1, it turns out that “the famous paleontologist Dr.

+ read

Extract from the September 9, 1911, Literary Digest.Reminded, in a recent discussion with Jason Rosenhouse, of William A. Williams’s The Evolution of Man Scientifically Disproved (1925), a Scopes-era effort in using pseudomathematics to debunk evolution, I was skimming the book again.

+ read

Alabama state coat of arms, via Wikimedia CommonsIn September 2015, something amazing happened. It isn’t what we traditionally think of as ground-breaking or life-changing, but to millions of young people in one southern state, this will be the first step toward a new lens on science. What was it?

+ read
Subscribe to Evolution denial