About Creationism

Evolution, Creationism, and the Battle to Control America’s Classrooms

by Michael Berkman and Eric Plutzer
Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 2010. 304 pages.

“Natural scientists … often react with disbelief and dismay when they read polls about how many Americans do not believe in human evolution and resist its teaching in public schools. They’re not sure what (if anything) can be done about it in our exceptionally religious-minded society,” writes reviewer George F. Bishop. “But it may take highly capable political scientists, such as Berkman and Plutzer, to pave the way to effective reform by telling us what goes on behind those classroom doors, and why.

No Dinosaurs in Heaven

written, produced, and directed by Greta Schiller
New York: Jezebel Productions, 2011. 53 minutes.

No Dinosaurs in Heaven addresses concerns about who is teaching students what in classrooms across America — a cultural conflict that has been flaring up off and on for decades,” writes reviewer Brandon Haught. While Haught appreciates the two storylines involving NCSE’s rafting trip through the Grand Canyon and Schiller’s own experiences with

Living Large in Nature: A Writer’s Idea of Creationism

by Reg Saner
Chicago: University of Chicago Press, 2010. 136 pages.

Reviewer Lisa H. Sideris explains, “Reg Saner’s book Living Large in Nature ... explores the concept of creation from a writer and nature lover’s perspective.

Creation and Evolution

by Lenn E. Goodman
London: Routledge, 2010; 222 pages

“Writing against both biblical fundamentalists and militant secularists, Goodman hopes to show that religion is no threat to evolution and that Darwinism doesn’t mean that God is dead,” explains reviewer Arthur McCalla.

God vs. Darwin: The War Between Evolution and Creationism in the Classroom

by Mano Singham
Lanham (MD): Rowman & Littlefield, 2009. 192 pages.

Reviewer Stephen P. Weldon recommends God vs. Darwin, but with reservations, for its treatment of the eighty-year history of legal battles over the teaching of evolution in American schools. Weldon praises Singham’s ability to write clearly and succinctly, particularly on the legal issues, but observes that the book is mainly a synthesis, presenting no new research or perspectives.

Evolution, Creationism, and Intelligent Design

by Allene S. Phy-Olsen
Santa Barbara (CA): Greenwood Press, 2010. 171 pages.

Commending the book’s organization and annotated bibliography, reviewer Robert H. Rothman nevertheless complains of “the long and often irrelevant digressions” in the limited space of the book. While the discussion of the Scopes trial is good, Epperson v. Arkansas and Edwards v. Aguillard are not even mentioned, a serious omission. Many of the chapters are unfocused, and the discussion of theistic evolution is not coherently presented.

Chronology of the Evolution–Creationism Controversy

by Randy Moore, Mark Decker, and Sehoya Cotner
Westport (CT): Greenwood Press, 2010. 454 pages.

Calling the Chronology “accessible and endlessly fascinating,” reviewer David A. Reid praises it as “a veritable treasure trove of well-known and less well-known works” and suggests that it will serve students and teachers well, despite its $85 cost. But the text suffers from a degree of repetitiveness, and the authors frequently neglect the historical context of the ideas they consider, discussing them only with respect to future developments.

The Great Tennessee Monkey Trial

by Peter Goodchild
Los Angeles: L.A. Theater Works, 2001. (Audio cassette.)

Based on the original trial transcripts from the Scopes trial, this recording of the radio drama The Great Tennessee Monkey Trial features a bravura performance by Edward Asner as William Jennings Bryan. A reviewer for the Wall Street Journal commented, "the trial itself is heard as it happened, and is all the more dramatic for being true. ... while I doubt it'll change many minds in Harrisburg [where the trial in Kitzmiller v. Dover was then being conducted], or anywhere else, it still makes for a thought-provoking show."

An Evolving Dialogue

edited by James B. Miller
Harrisburg, PA: Trinity Press International, 2001. 544 pages.

In the introduction to his anthology, Miller explains that "the articles collected herein provide a basic introduction to contemporary evolutionary biology, provide historical and philosophical perspectives on the relationship between evolutionary biology and religious thought, and consider the intelligent design movements from scientific, philosophical and religious perspectives." Among the contributors who will be familiar to readers of RNCSE are Francisco J. Ayala, Douglas J. Futuyma, Ursula Goodenough, Stephen Jay Gould, John F. Haught, Ernst Mayr, and Kenneth R.

Cult Archaeology & Creationism (expanded edition)

edited by Francis B. Harrold and Raymond A. Eve
Iowa City: University of Iowa Press, 1995. 187 pages.

In the preface to Cult Archaeology & Creationism, the editors explain "[t]he articles in this book are concerned with pseudoscientific beliefs about the human past. They are not primarily concerned with showing how and why these beliefs are wrong. ... Instead, this book is concerned primarily with two tasks relatively neglected by the scientific community: understanding these beliefs and dealing with them." Contributors include Kenneth L. Feder, Alice B. Kehoe, Laurie Godfrey and John Cole, and Bernard Ortiz de Montellano.