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Wisdom Wednesday: Yale Polymath David Gelernter’s Farewell to Darwinism

Image source: Discovery Institute.

A few years ago, the brilliant Yale University polymath David Gelernter wrote an essay entitled “Giving Up Darwin — A fond farewell to a brilliant and beautiful theory,” in which he made a stunning confession: “Stephen Meyer’s thoughtful and meticulous 𝘋𝘢𝘳𝘸𝘪𝘯’𝘴 𝘋𝘰𝘶𝘣𝘵 convinced me that Darwin has failed.”

Is Gelernter a creationist? No. Is he a proponent of intelligent design? No. “There’s no reason,” Gelernter wrote in the Claremont Review of Books, “to doubt that Darwin successfully explained the small adjustments by which an organism adapts to local circumstances: changes to fur density or wing style or beak shape. Yet there are many reasons to doubt whether he can answer the hard questions and explain the big picture — not the fine-tuning of existing species but the emergence of new ones. The origin of species is exactly what Darwin cannot explain.”

Gelernter summarizes: “𝘋𝘢𝘳𝘸𝘪𝘯’𝘴 𝘋𝘰𝘶𝘣𝘵 is one of the most important books in a generation. Few open-minded people will finish it with their faith in Darwin intact.”

That might sound like a scary thought. Some may not be willing to read Meyer’s book and risk losing their faith in the science we’ve been told is all settled. But don’t you wonder why a brilliant guy like Professor Gelernter would give up Darwin? Read his true confession here.

Emily Sandico

Special Projects Coordinator and Senior Fellow, Center for Science and Culture
Emily Sandico is a Senior Fellow with Discovery Institute’s Center for Science and Culture, where she also serves as Special Projects Coordinator. She holds bachelor’s degrees in philosophy and education from Whitworth University and a doctorate in veterinary medicine from Washington State University. She spent 14 years at a major Silicon Valley tech firm, where she worked as a technical editor and product manager, and as a liaison for Fortune 500 clients and the firm’s software development organization, sales force, and technical consultants around the world. Dr. Sandico is a licensed veterinarian with a special interest in how the study of medicine informs our understanding of design in biology. As a citizen and a scientist, she is most interested in helping people to seek truth by building a culture that fosters personal liberty, intellectual honesty, academic freedom, and scientific rigor.



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