Rocks of Ages Science and Religion in the Fullness of Life

ISBN-10: 034545040X
ISBN-13: 9780345450401
Edition: N/A
List price: $16.00 Buy it from $3.00
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Description: Writing with bracing intelligence and clarity, internationally renowned evolutionist and bestselling author Stephen Jay Gould sheds new light on a dilemma that has plagued thinking people since the Renaissance: the rift between science and religion.  More...

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Book details

List price: $16.00
Publisher: Random House Publishing Group
Publication date: 2/26/2002
Binding: Paperback
Pages: 256
Size: 5.25" wide x 8.25" long x 0.75" tall
Weight: 0.638
Language: English

Writing with bracing intelligence and clarity, internationally renowned evolutionist and bestselling author Stephen Jay Gould sheds new light on a dilemma that has plagued thinking people since the Renaissance: the rift between science and religion. Instead of choosing them, Gould asks, why not opt for a golden mean that accords dignity and distinction to each realm? In his distinctively elegant style, Gould offers a lucid, contemporary principle that allows science and religion to coexist peacefully in a position of respectful noninterference. Science defines the natural world; religion our moral world in recognition of their separate spheres of influence. In exploring this thought-provoking concept, Gould delves into the history of science, sketching affecting portraits of scientists and moral leaders wrestling with matters of faith and reason. Stories of seminal figures such as Galileo, Darwin, and Thomas Henry Huxley make vivid his argument that individuals and cultures must cultivate both a life of the spirit and a life of rational inquiry in order to experience the fullness of being human. In Rocks of Ages, Gould’s passionate humanism, ethical discernment, and erudition are fused to create a dazzling gem of contemporary cultural philosophy.

Born in New York City in 1941, Stephen Jay Gould received his B.A. from Antioch College in New York in 1963 and a Ph.D. in paleontology from Columbia University in 1967. Gould spent most of his career as a professor at Harvard University and curator of invertebrate paleontology at Harvard's Museum of Comparative Zoology. His research was mainly in the evolution and speciation of land snails. Gould was a leading proponent of the theory of punctuated equilibrium. This theory holds that few evolutionary changes occur among organisms over long periods of time, and then a brief period of rapid changes occurs before another long, stable period of equilibrium sets in. Gould also made significant contributions to the field of evolutionary developmental biology, most notably in his work, Ontogeny and Phylogeny. An outspoken advocate of the scientific outlook, Gould had been a vigorous defender of evolution against its creation-science opponents in popular magazines focusing on science. He wrote a column for Natural History and has produced a remarkable series of books that display the excitement of science for the layperson. Among his many awards and honors, Gould won the National Book Award and the National Book Critics Circle Award. His titles include; Ever Since Darwin, The Panda's Thumb, Hen's Teeth and Horse's Toes, Time's Arrow, Time's Cycle, Wonderful Life: The Burgess Shale and the Nature of History, The Structure of Evolutionary Theory and Full House: The Spread of Excellence from Plato to Darwin. Stephen Jay Gould died on May 20, 2002, following his second bout with cancer.

The Problem Stated
Preamble
A Tale of Two Thomases
The Fate of Two Fathers
The Problem Resolved in Principle
NOMA Defined and Defended
NOMA Illustrated
Coda and Segue
Historical Reasons for Conflict
The Contingent Basis for Intensity
Columbus and the Flat Earth: An Example of the Fallacy of Warfare Between Science and Religion
Defending NOMA from Both Sides Now: The Struggle Against Modern Creationism
Creationism: A Distinctively American Violation of NOMA
Trouble in Our Own House: A Brief Legal Survey From Scopes to Scalia
The Passion and Compassion of William Jennings Bryan: The Other Side of NOMA
Psychological Reasons for Conflict
Can Nature Nurture Our Hopes?
Nature's Cold Bath and Darwin's Defense of NOMA
The Two False Paths of Irenics
Index

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