Is Darwinism past its
“Sell By” Date?
Charles Darwin published his great work, On the Origin of Species in 1859. In that work, not only did
he make the case for evolution he also offered a mechanism, natural selection or (as it became known later)
the survival of the fittest. We are now celebrating the 150th anniversary of the Origin, as well as the 200th
anniversary of Darwin's birth. It is therefore appropriate to step back and look at the theory of the Origin,
asking both about its success back then and even more how it fares today. My answers are that it did well in
its own day but clearly needed more work to make it fully successful. Today, thank goodness, not one item of
Darwin's thinking remains intact; but, at the same time, everything that Darwin had to say is as vital and
relevant as it ever was. The proper analogy is the Volkswagen, the “people's car” of the late 1930s Germany.
Not one part of that car still functions today, and yet the 2009 Beetle or Bug is so identifiably exactly the same
car. As Heraclitus said, you cannot step into the same river twice. But then, as Parmenides said, nothing
changes. Darwinism is the living embodiment of the truths of both of these sayings.
Biofilosofen Michael Ruse er en verdenskapasitet på evolusjonsteori
og forholdet mellom biologi, humanvitenskap, og livssyn.
Ruse er professor ved Florida State University i USA og
æresdoktor ved Universitetet i Bergen.
Mandag 20. april kl 13.15
Auditorium 1, Realfagsbygget
Arrangementet er gratis og åpent for alle.
Foredragene vil holdes på engelsk
og egner seg også for ikke-biologer.