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Derb: I have agreed with much, maybe even most, of what you have had to say about evolution and intelligent design. But I cannot agree with the comment on Himmelfarb. (I’ll leave aside the astonishing comment about literature, etc., having had nothing to teach us about human nature.) It does not sound as though she’s afraid that science is going to uncover a mechanistic and reductive truth about human nature, and she’s certainly not trying to ban anything. She’s concerned that people are going to interpret the findings of science in a mechanistic and reductive way, and she’s urging resistance to that temptation. And she thinks that people will present succumbing to that temptation as though it follows from the science itself–i.e., that it will be done “in the name of Darwinism.” She is not analogizing the Darwinian to a Christian or a Marxist, except insofar as all three are capable of making mistakes.


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