When Darwin finally published On the Origin of Species in 1859, there was no guarantee that the grand theory of natural selection would become one of the most valuable ideas impacting biology and our modernity. It was so controversial that some disapproving scientists, many in the Church, and powerful others worked to stop it from becoming known and accepted.
This is the story of Darwin, his life, times, and some of the brave scientists who supported and advocated for him at the birth of the scientific revolution.
Dr. David I. Orenstein is a full professor of Anthropology at Medgar Evers College of the City University of New York. He is the co-author of two books, the 2015 Godless Grace: How Non-Believers are Making the World Safer Richer and Kinder, and the 2019 publication of Darwin's Apostles. A primatologist by early training he has written for numerous national and international freethinker and science publications. Dr. Orenstein is also a noted civil and human rights activist, representing the American Humanist Association at the United Nations through the NGO/DPI program, and is a sought after speaker on human rights, science education and evolution acceptance.
Dr. Abigail A. Hafer has a D.Phil. in zoology from Oxford University and teaches human anatomy and physiology as a Senior Lecturer at Curry College. She is the author of The Not-So-Intelligent Designer: Why Evolution Explains the Human Body and Intelligent Design Does Not. She has contributed chapters to the books Christianity in the Light of Science, and Women v. Religion, and articles to The American Biology Teacher, The Humanist, and the American Rationalist. She is a popular public speaker, and uses humor to puncture bad arguments. She takes particular delight in debunking both Creationism/Intelligent Design, and the gender binary. She has submitted a bill to the Massachusetts legislature that protects fact-based science education.
"At a time when denial of scientific evidence could lead to the end of our species and many others, here is an entertaining and accessible book about the search for the origin of species, including ours. Here too is an account of the battles that ensued after Charles Darwin proposed his theory and the brave 'apostles' who explained and defended his ideas in the face of religious attack. As a great-great-grandson of Darwin, I applaud this terrific book and hope that non-scientists and scientists alike will be inspired by it to fight today's battle, the battle for science in the face of mindless greed."
– Matthew H.D. Chapman, writer, director, and activist