Critics of intelligent design often try to dismiss the theory as not worth addressing, as a question already settled, even as being too boring to countenance. Then they spend an amazing amount of energy trying to refute it.
The very evidence of the ongoing debate sparked by Stephen Meyer’s Signature in the Cell should silence that tired trope that there is no controversy over evolution and intelligent design. That controversy has reached a fever-pitch in less than a year since the book’s first release, marking Meyer’s volume as a book serious Darwinists must deal with. And dealt with it, they haven’t — in their responses, some critics have misread it, while others have simply failed to read it at all.
Thus the defenders of Meyer’s book have analyzed these various hostile and futile attacks, and their responses to critics of Signature in the Cell have been gathered and are now published in a new digital book, Signature of Controversy: Responses to Critics of Signature in the Cell, now available for free download here.
The book features essays by David Berlinski, David Klinghoffer, Casey Luskin, Stephen C. Meyer, Paul Nelson, Jay Richards and Richard Sternberg.
The debate is raging; the controversy is real. Read Signature of Controversy and judge for yourself; each response contains links to the original critique in question, making it easy to follow the contours of the arguments. As the book’s editor, David Klinghoffer, writes in the Introduction:
To call Meyer’s book fascinating and important is an understatement. No less interesting in its way, however, was the critical response and it is with that the book you are reading now is concerned. For the fact is that despite its being written about in print and online by numerous friends and foes of intelligent-design theory, few–if any–of the critics really grappled with the
substance of Meyer’s argument. This is remarkable and telling.
In the pages that follow, which include links to the critics’ own writings, defenders of Stephen Meyer’s book analyze the hostile response. The chapters here all appeared previously, most on the Discovery Institute’s group blog site, Evolution News & Views (ENV), on the BioLogos site, or in the journal Salvo. The book is organized along the following lines. In Part I, Meyer and his defenders go to work on the horde of Signature-bashers who not only did not read the book but in most instances did not even take the trouble to inform themselves about its contents. These latter include even so eminent a biologist as Francisco Ayala of the University of California, Irvine–of whom, more in a moment. In Part II, Meyer and other friends of ID reply to critics who actually took the time to read Signature in the Cell before attacking it. This turned out to be a relative rarity, for reasons that are worth pondering. While Parts I and II deal with Signature’s more serious critics, or anyway those with reputations for seriousness, Part III concentrates on the crowd of pygmies who populate the furious, often obscene Darwinist blogs.
Download the book here.