200 pages, illustrations
Though the United States is the world leader in science and technology, many of its citizens display a shocking ignorance regarding basic scientific facts. Recent surveys have revealed that only about half of Americans realize that humans have never lived side by side with dinosaurs, and about the same number reject the idea that humans developed from earlier species of animals. This lack of knowledge in the face of overwhelming scientific evidence for evolution springs from a number of negative influences in contemporary society: poor secondary education in some regions of the country, misinformation in the mass media, and deliberate obfuscation by supporters of Creationism and Intelligent Design.
In this concise, accessible, "myth-buster's handbook", educators Cameron M. Smith and Charles Sullivan clearly dispel the ten most common myths about evolution, which continue to mislead average Americans. Using a refreshing, jargon-free style, they set the record straight on claims that evolution is "just a theory", that Darwinian explanations of life undercut morality, that Intelligent Design is a legitimate alternative to conventional science, that humans come from chimpanzees, and six other popular but erroneous notions.
Smith and Sullivan's reader-friendly, solidly researched text will serve as an important tool, both for teachers and laypersons seeking accurate information about evolution.
"Passionate in their support of evolutionary science, the authors nonetheless adopt a straightforward and ecumenical approach, precisely distilling each hot-button issue to its cogent essence. The result is a meticulously researched and distinctly presented overview of a complex and contentious issue [...] A clear, understandable approach makes this an excellent student resource."
"A modest proposal to reverse the national great leap backwards: I say we all familiarize ourselves with the compelling, crystalline logic of The Top Ten Myths about Evolution. Then, let's do our best to connect with those who have yet to accept the ancient legacy of life on earth as revealed by Darwin and affirmed in countless ways by the generations of science ever since."
– Ann Druyan, co-author with Carl Sagan of Shadows of Forgotten Ancestors
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Cameron M. Smith, Ph.D. (Portland, OR) is an adjunct faculty associate at Portland State University’s department of anthropology and a popular science writer who has published articles in Scientific American MIND, Archaeology, Playboy, Spaceflight, Skeptical Inquirer, The Writer, and other publications.
Charles Sullivan (Portland, OR) has graduate degrees in philosophy and English and is an adjunct faculty member in Portland Community College's writing department. He has published articles with Cameron M. Smith in Playboy, Skeptical Inquirer, and The Writer.