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An Easy-to-Understand Guide for Defeating Darwinism by Opening Minds Paperback – July 7, 1997


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Product Details

  • Paperback: 131 pages
  • Publisher: InterVarsity Press (July 7, 1997)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0830813608
  • ISBN-13: 978-0830813605
  • Product Dimensions: 5.5 x 0.4 x 8.2 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 4.8 ounces (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 3.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (125 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #120,657 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Editorial Reviews

From Booklist

Johnson feels his successful antievolution books, Darwin on Trial (1991) and Reason in the Balance (1995), are more complicated than parents and teachers need to prepare students to take on the evolutionists. Hence, this shorter version of his overall thesis that also advises how to debate evolution. Johnson first makes clear what he perceives the real adversary to be: a dogma that insists life arose solely by chance and that denies contrary evidence a hearing. He then counsels believers to avoid such common mistakes as retreating from theism to deism (and so transforming a continuously creative God into an uninvolved First Cause), to learn to spot faulty analogies and other forms of poor logic, to know the soundest scientific data casting doubt on classical evolution, and to persist--for, he says, the days of Darwinian hegemony are numbered. He firmly believes and seeks to persuade readers that his ultimate causes, aside from religious faith, are freedom of inquiry and the opening of now closed minds. Ray Olson --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.

About the Author

Phillip E. Johnson taught law for more than thirty years at the University of California--Berkeley where he is professor emeritus. He is recognized as a leading spokesman for the intelligent design movement, and is the author of many books, including Darwin on Trial, Reason in the Balance and Defeating Darwinism by Opening Minds.

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Customer Reviews

I enjoyed reading this book, having purchased it 2 days ago and finishing it last night.
Michael Trapp
Not content with lies, misrepresentations and fact twisting, Johnson attempts to portray scientists as purveyors of a harsh soulless enterprise.
dvimus
The auther suggests no evidence why the theory of evolution is wrong nor why we have to accept the story (not theory) of creation.
Won

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

114 of 171 people found the following review helpful By John Rummel on September 30, 2000
Format: Paperback
As a defender of creation science, Phillip Johnson is a breath of fresh air. Nowhere are there indefensible scientific arguments for a young earth, or a worldwide flood that accounts for the fossil record, or any of the other endlessly recycled Henry Morris/Duane Gish nonsense that makes up so much of the creationist "young earth" camp. Johnson frames the question more on a philosophical level, pitting the presuppositions of both camps against one another (materialistic naturalism vs. theistic supernaturalism), and attempting to show that adherents of the first camp make just as many untestable and unsupportable assumptions as the adherents of the second. Johnson is a talented writer, and presents a positive argument for "opening" the debate by forcing the evolutionists to relax their dogmatic hold on the thinking in academia, and allow for a more open and free discussion of the actual issues, including evidence for supernatural intervention in the creation and evolution of life.
Unfortunately, the only positive evidence Johnson suggests is Michael Behe's irreducible complexity argument, which is just a repackaged intelligent design model, and the conventional attack on biology's admitted problem with the incompleteness of the fossil record. Throughout the book, Johnson emphasizes the dominance of the materialistic philosophy that pervades every aspect of modern public education and academia. This predisposition, he argues, hopelessly biases any approach to scientific facts and prevents scientists from appreciating the fuller truth that's out there if only they would open their eyes (minds). Johnson repeatedly mischaracterizes the practice of science and the state of affairs in biological circles.
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3 of 5 people found the following review helpful By Steven H Propp TOP 100 REVIEWER on May 9, 2013
Format: Paperback
Phillip E. Johnson (born 1940) is a retired UC Berkeley law professor and a co-founder of the Discovery Institute's Center for Science and Culture, and is one of the leading figures in the Intelligent Design movement. He has also written books such as Darwin on Trial, Reason in the Balance: The Case Against Naturalism in Science, Law and Education, Objections Sustained: Subversive Essays on Evolution, Law and Culture, The Wedge of Truth: Splitting the Foundations of Naturalism, etc.

He wrote in the Introduction to this 1997 book, "This book grew out of two conversations. The first was... with ... my usual publisher. The [InterVarsity] Press was ready for me to do another book, but I wasn't sure I was ready... however, it became clear that there was ONE book I needed to write very soon... There was clearly a need for a short book aimed at ... [those] not quite so familiar with university-level subjects. In particular, I wanted to write for late teens... That brings me to the second conversation, which occurred in the faculty club of my own university... [I realized that] If high-schoolers need a good high-school education in how to think about evolution, professors and senior scientists seem to need it just as badly. That's what this book aims to give---a good high-school education in how to think about evolution." (Pg.
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3 of 5 people found the following review helpful By Jonathan Bartlett on February 7, 2014
Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
Don't be put off by the cover or the title, which are both a little cheesy. This book is one of the best introductions to the questions of creation, evolution, and design for junior high and high school students. Rather than picking one viewpoint and showing why it is true, Defeating Darwinism operates by exposing kids to what the whole question is about, why it is important, and how to think more clearly about issues. It includes an exposition of Carl Sagan's "baloney detector" and how to use it, and a lot of the fallacies that people on all sides of the issue use. It also delves into the *core* issue - materialism, and shows why this is such an important and misunderstood aspect of the debate. Since it is for a general high-school audience, it does a good job of showing why these issues are relevant to them, and how to approach similar issues that they face in the future.
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19 of 30 people found the following review helpful By A Customer on December 24, 1999
Format: Paperback
This is an interesting book, but the author is a bit selective in his facts. This is not entirely his fault, because it's a weakness inherent in attacking science from a religious standpoint. Of course, as is often pointed out, the theory of evolution is simply that --- a theory, which is constantly subject to revision as new facts come to light. But this is precisely the difference between scientific theory and religious doctrine: The scientist (in principle, at least) starts with an open mind and feels free to modify his or her theories as new facts emerge, whereas an author like Johnson starts out with his mind made up and shoehorns the facts to make them fit his position. Ironically, in light of the title of this book, it's Johnson who is unable to maintain an open mind. This is not in any way to suggest that religious "truths" are less meaningful than scientific "truths." In fact it could be argued that it is religion which points to the ultimate truth, beyond the realm of the senses, whereas science is limited to the relative truth, i.e., that which can be empirically observed and quantified. In my opinion Johnson actually trivializes religion by implying that religious insights can have no real value unless they can be proven scientifically. In any case, this will always be a futile endeavor, because the real purpose of religion is different from that of science. In trying to discredit the theory of evolution because he apparently sees it in opposition to his personal religious views, Johnson is forced to focus on just those facts which support his opinions and to disregard the rest. This hardly satisfies the definition of an "open mind."
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