Tuesday, September 01, 2009

Three New Books on Darwinism, Philosophy, & Biotechnology

Some of my writing has appeared in three recently published books.

Philosophy After Darwin: Classic and Contemporary Readings, edited by Michael Ruse, has just been published by Princeton University Press. This book brings together a broad selection of writings on the philosophic implications of Darwinism, along with helpful commentary by Ruse. It includes readings from Darwin, Herbert Spencer, Friedrich Nietzsche, Charles Sanders Peirce, William James, Karl Popper, Thomas Kuhn, Alvin Plantinga, E. O. Wilson, Steven Pinker, Peter Singer, David Sloan Wilson, and many others.

This book reprints two selections by me--a couple of chapters from Darwinian Conservatism and an essay on "The Darwinian Moral Sense and Biblical Religion."

Ruse has carefully selected the readings to convey the contrasting positions in the continuing philosophical debates over Darwinism. So, for example, a reading from Singer on "the Darwinian Left" is followed by the reading from me on "Darwinian conservatism." Plantinga's argument that Darwinism undermines a naturalistic epistemology is followed by Evan Fales' critical response to Plantinga.

This book should be useful both for those scholars interested in the philosophic debates over Darwinism and for teachers looking for a text to introduce these debates to students.

The other two books on my table have been mentioned previously on this blog. Biotechnology: Our Future as Human Beings and Citizens, edited by Sean Sutton, has been published by the State University of New York Press. This book captures the philosophic debate over biotechnology with essays by Leon Kass, Ron Bailey, Ron Green, Lee Silver, Hava Tirosh-Samuelson, Richard Sherlock, and me. My contribution is entitled "The Bible and Biotechnology." The theological side of this debate runs through at least five of the essays.

Finally, I will put in another plug for Darwinian Conservatism: A Disputed Question, edited by Ken Blanchard and published by Imprint Academic. This book reprints the entire text of Darwinian Conservatism, followed by critical assessments from Neil Blackstone, Lauren Hall, Carson Holloway, Peter Lawler, Timothy Sandefur, Richard Sherlock, Michael Shermer, and John West. I have a response to these critics. And then Blanchard has an excellent concluding essay on "Natural Right and Natural Selection," which takes up the Aristotelian character of Darwinian natural right.

No comments: