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Sat, 7 Feb 2009

The Genius of Charles Darwin

So having watched Richard Dawkins's "The Root of All Evil?", I decided to watch another of his series. This time I chose "The Genius of Charles Darwin", hoping that it would be rather better than the previous programme. I was hoping for a clear explanation of Darwin's theory and why it is correct. Sadly, the explanations were dumbed down, the arguments simplistic and hence full of holes, and - surprise surprise - he spent at least as much time talking about religion as he did about Charles Darwin's genius. Bleah.

This time, unlike previously, there's no choice as to who gets the Punch In The Face award. It's Dawkins. Not for being smug and propagandistic this time, but for doing such a piss-poor job of presenting a fascinating subject. And again, the person I'd want to have a drink with is a CofE bishop, Rowan Williams, Archbishop of Canterbury. He has a lovely voice and a beard that is clearly designed for filtering twigs out of proper cider.

Anyway, that's the last review of Dawkins.TV. Writing bad reviews is no fun.

Update: one last brief observation - David Attenborough's programme "Charles Darwin and the Tree of Life" is the programme that Dawkins should have made. Watch it. It's great.

Posted at 20:45 by David Cantrell
keywords: tv
Permalink | 1 Comment

Could not agree more. Dawkins is a bright chap who had some good ideas a long time ago. When you carefully read his arguments you realise that they are poorly constructed and badly presented. He has undoubtedly made a significant contribution to evolutionary biology - but public relations is not his forté.

On the other hand Attenborough who usually takes a very diplomatic and anthropomorphic angle did an excellent job with "Darwin and the Tree of Life". It was unambiguous, well argued and avoided loaded terms. Probably one of his finest pieces of work just because of it's clarity.

The sad thing is that Dawkins just taunts "dumb animals" and makes the whole argument seem petty and personal, so that when Attenborough comes along he gets really nasty personal attacks from the nuts that Dawkins has been baiting.

Posted by Adam on Sun, 8 Feb 2009 at 10:04:58


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