Synopses & Reviews
and#147;This thoughtful book is a sophisticated baloney detector for digesting the offal that creationists try to pass off as steak. The late Walter Fitch demonstrates that the logic and language of science depart from the delusions of creationism.and#8221;--Tim M. Berra, author of /i/Charles Darwin: The Concise Story of an Extraordinary Man //i/and /i/Evolution and the Myth of Creationism//i/
"Half a century ago, the structure and logic of science was taught in science departments, but these tasks are now relegated to departments of history and philosophy of science, where scientists seldom tread. This book shows us why scientists need to learn logic from scientists, and how they can. Walter Fitch's examples range from astronomy to DNA, and he manages to show at every turn how the assumptions of anti-evolutionists and other foes of science defeat themselves. This book should be part of every science curriculum, read by all students--and their professors. Fitch has left us a masterpiece."and#151;Kevin Padian, University of California, Berkeley
and#147;Walter Fitch makes a strong case: Creationism violates the evidence from scientific investigations, misrepresents the interpretation of primary religious documents, utterly fails as a logical presentation, and does so in blasts of unjustified rhetoric."and#151;Richard E. Dickerson, University of California, Los Angeles
and#147;Into this concise book late Walter Fitch poured his commitment to explaining evolution and his conviction that an understanding of logic and of scientific methods would lead the reader to see the strengths of evolutionary biology and the deficiencies of creationism.and#8221;and#151;Joe Felsenstein, University of Washington
Walter M. Fitch, a pioneer in the study of molecular evolution, has written this cogent overview of why creationism fails with respect to all the fundamentals of scientific inquiry. He explains the basics of logic and rhetoric at the heart of scientific thinking, shows what a logical syllogism is, and tells how one can detect that an argument is logically fallacious, and therefore invalid, or even duplicitous. Fitch takes his readers through the arguments used by creationists to question the science of evolution. He clearly delineates the fallacies in logic that characterize creationist thinking, and explores the basic statistics that creationists tend to ignore, including elementary genetics, the age of the Earth, and fossil dating. His book gives readers the tools they need for detecting and disassembling the ideas most frequently repeated by creationists.
About the Author
Walter M. Fitch (1929and#150;2011) was Professor of Ecology and Evolutionary Biology at the University of California, Irvine. He was a member of the National Academy of Sciences, member of the Human Genome Organization, and the author of more than 200 publications in molecular evolution. His previous books are Tempo and Mode in Evolution: Genetics and Paleontology Fifty Years after Simpson and Variation and Evolution in Plants and Microorganisms: Toward a New Synthesis Fifty Years after Stebbins.
Table of Contents
Foreword by Francisco J. Ayala
1. Logic, Logical Fallacies, and Rhetoric
2. The Basics
3. Some Simple Math and Statistics
4. and#147;Young-Earthand#8221; Creationism
Epilogue: The Literal Meaning of Genesis
Annotated Reference List