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Unnatural Death

In this wide-ranging history of euthanasia and assisted suicide, historian Richard Weikart takes us from the ancient Jews, Greeks, and Romans to the contemporary scene—where the urge to help people kill themselves has intensified, even to the point of pushing the reluctant towards death. How did we reach this place? Unnatural Death answers this question by tracing a complex and fascinating history of ideas, attitudes, and legal wranglings stretching from Socrates to Peter Singer and beyond. Along the way Weikart shows diverse thinkers wrestling with the tension between the unalienable preciousness of human life and the longing to escape suffering and despair. As the author shows, the Judeo-Christian tradition encouraged a culture of life, but the secular Enlightenment and Darwinian

The Farm at the Center of the Universe

Why did Isaac’s father have to die so young? Isaac’s older cousin Charlie — a science teacher — says he knows why. Nature is pitiless. There’s no God. No afterlife. Just atoms in the void and the struggle for survival. Charlie says a week at their grandparents’ farm, seeing animals get killed and eaten, will prove it. But at the farm, both of them get more than they bargained for. And soon Isaac finds himself caught in a battle of wits between two men, and facing a choice he alone can

The Big Bang Revolutionaries

Hubble and Einsten are often credited, but the real heroes of the Big Bang revolution are the Russian Alexander Friedmann and Belgian priest Georges Lemaître. The Big Bang Revolutionaries amends the record, telling the remarkable story of how these two men, joined by the mischievous George Gamow and in the face of conventional scientific wisdom, offered a compelling view of a singular creation of the universe in what Lemaître termed a “primeval atom.”

Darwin’s Bluff

In this fascinating piece of historical detective work, Robert Shedinger draws on Darwin’s letters, private notebooks, and an unfinished manuscript to piece together a puzzle and reveal an embarrassing truth: Darwin never finished his sequel to The Origin of Species because in the end he could not deliver the empirical evidence he promised would validate his theory.

The Design Inference

A landmark of the intelligent design movement, The Design Inference revolutionized our understanding of how we detect intelligent causation. Originally published twenty-five years ago, it has now been revised and expanded into a second edition that greatly sharpens its exploration of design inferences.

Minding the Brain

Is your mind the same thing as your brain, or are there aspects of mind beyond the brain’s biology? This is the mind-body problem, and it has captivated curious minds since the dawn of human contemplation. Today many insist that the mind is completely reducible to the brain. But is that claim justified? In this stimulating anthology, twenty-five philosophers and scientists offer fresh insights into the mind-brain debate, drawing on psychology, neurology, philosophy, computer science, and neurosurgery. Their provocative conclusion? The mind is indeed more than the brain. Online Content Introduction and Table of Contents Chapter 11—In What Sense Is Consciousness a Property? Chapter 20—Consciousness and Quantum Information Chapter 24—Can Consciousness Be Explained By

Science After Babel

Polymath and raconteur David Berlinski is at it again, challenging the shibboleths of contemporary science with his inimitable blend of deep learning, close reasoning, and rapier wit. In Science After Babel he reflects on everything from Newton, Einstein, and Gödel to catastrophe theory, information theory, and the morass that is modern Darwinism. The scientific enterprise is unarguably impressive, but it shows no sign of reaching the empyrean heights it seemed to promise a century ago. “It resembles Bruegel’s Tower of Babel,” Berlinski says, “and if it suggests anything at all, it suggests that its original plans have somehow been lost.” Science endures. Scientism, it would seem, is guttering out. Plaudits Many will read this book for the close, elegant

Darwin Comes to Africa

Charles Darwin fathered not just a scientific theory, but a toxic social ideology that fueled racist colonial policies in Africa. In this sobering book, African scholar Olufemi Oluniyi traces the insidious impact of Darwinian ideas on British imperial policies in Northern Nigeria. Drawing on official documents, public statements, and well-attested historical events, Oluniyi documents how concepts such as evolutionary racism and survival of the fittest were systematically used to demean black Africans, consigning some people to a status of permanent inferiority. Rejecting Social Darwinism, Oluniyi makes a compelling argument for the equality of all human beings, and for recognizing Africa’s many seminal contributions to the history of human civilization. Praise Ideas rule the

Your Designed Body

Consider your body. Every day it must solve hundreds of hard engineering problems simultaneously, or else you’ll die. While you’re going about your daily business, your body stores, retrieves, translates, and manages software for thousands of proteins, switches, setpoints, thresholds, feedback loops, coordinate systems, counters, and timers. It disassembles thousands of different complex molecules, converts them into their building blocks, absorbs the building blocks, then reassembles them into the legions of chemicals and proteins that keep you going. Your body also safely transports hazardous chemicals to where they’re needed, without spilling them in places where they’d do harm, and employs them as it orchestrates thousands of complex processes and movements, some nearly

Non-Computable You

Will machines someday replace attorneys, physicians, computer programmers, and world leaders? What about composers, painters, and novelists? Will tomorrow’s supercomputers duplicate and exceed humans? Are we just wetware, natural computers doomed to obsolescence by tomorrow’s ultra-powerful artificial intelligence? In Non-Computable You: What You Do That Artificial Intelligence Never Will, Robert J. Marks II answers these and other fascinating questions with his trademark blend of whimsy and expertise. Catch a glimpse of the geniuses behind today’s AI — their foibles, follies, and friendships — as told by someone on the inside. Under the author’s steady and winsome guidance, learn about the exciting possibilities for artificial intelligence, but also hear how many of the

Darwinian Racism

To hear some tell it, Adolf Hitler was a Christian creationist who rejected Darwinian evolution. Award-winning historian Richard Weikart shows otherwise. According to Weikart, Darwinian evolution crucially influenced Hitler and the Nazis, and the Nazis zealously propagated evolutionary theory during the Third Reich. Inspired by arguments from both Darwin and early Darwinists, the Nazis viewed the “Nordic race” as superior to other races and set about advancing human evolution by ridding the world of “inferior” races and individuals. As Weikart also shows, these ideas circulate today among white nationalists and neo-Nazis, who routinely use Darwinian theory in their propaganda to advance a racist agenda. Darwinian Racism is careful history. It is also a wake-up

Animal Algorithms

How do some birds, turtles, and insects possess navigational abilities that rival the best manmade navigational technologies? Who or what taught the honey bee its dance, or its hive mates how to read the complex message of the dance? In Animal Algorithms, Eric Cassell surveys recent evidence and concludes that the difficulty remains, and indeed, is a far more potent challenge to evolutionary theory than Darwin imagined.

Taking Leave of Darwin

University professor Neil Thomas was a committed Darwinist and agnostic — until an investigation of evolutionary theory led him to a startling conclusion: “I had been conned!” As he studied the work of Darwin’s defenders, he found himself encountering tactics eerily similar to the methods of political brainwashing he had studied as a scholar. Thomas felt impelled to write a book as a sort of warning call to humanity: “Beware! You have been fooled!” The result is Taking Leave of Darwin, a wide-ranging history of the evolution debate. Thomas uncovers many formidable Darwin opponents that most people know nothing about, ably distills crucial objections raised early and late against Darwinism, and shows that those objections have been explained away but never effectively

Canceled Science

Eric Hedin was enjoying a productive career as a physics professor at Ball State University when the letter from a militant atheist arrived and all hell broke loose. The conflict spilled first onto the pages of the local newspaper, and then into the national news. The atheist attack included threats from the Freedom from Religion Foundation, which targeted Hedin after learning his Boundaries of Science course exposed students to an evidence-based case for design and purpose in cosmology, physics, and biochemistry. Canceled Science tells the dramatic story of the atheist campaign to cancel Hedin’s course, reveals the evidence the atheists tried to bury, and explores discoveries that have revolutionized our understanding of the nature and origin of matter, space, and even time

A Mousetrap for Darwin

Darwin’s Black Box thrust Michael Behe to the forefront of the intelligent design movement. The Lehigh University biochemist has haunted the dreams of Darwinists ever since. Each of his three books sparked a firestorm of criticism, in everything from the New York Times and the journal Science to the private blogs of professional atheists. Over the years, Behe has had a delightful time rebutting each attack, and now his responses are collected in a single volume entitled A Mousetrap for Darwin. The book’s title alludes to Behe’s homey illustration for his idea of irreducible complexity. A mousetrap with a missing part doesn’t work just a little worse. It doesn’t work at all. The same goes for the bacterial flagellum pictured on the

Gaming AI

Pointing to the triumph of artificial intelligence over unaided humans in everything from games such as chess and Go to vital tasks such as protein folding and securities trading, many experts uphold the theory of a “singularity.” This is the trigger point when human history ends and artificial intelligence prevails in an exponential cascade of self-replicating machines rocketing toward godlike supremacy in the universe. Gaming AI suggests that this belief is both dumb and self-defeating. Gaming AI calls for a remedial immersion in the industry’s own heroic history and an understanding of the actual science of their own human minds.

The Miracle of the Cell

The Miracle of the Cell provides compelling evidence that long before life emerged on our planet, the design of the carbon-based cell was foreshadowed in the order of nature, in the exquisite fitness of the laws of nature for this foundational unit of all life on Earth. Nowhere is this fitness more apparent than in the properties of the key atomic constituents of the cell. Each of the atoms of life — including carbon, hydrogen, oxygen, and nitrogen, as well as several metal elements — features a suite of unique properties fine-tuned to serve highly specific, indispensable roles in the cell. Moreover, some of these properties are specifically fit for essential roles in the cells of advanced aerobic organisms like ourselves. Author Michael Denton is a Senior Fellow with Discovery

Evolution and Intelligent Design in a Nutshell

Are life and the universe a mindless accident — the blind outworking of laws governing cosmic, chemical, and biological evolution? That’s the official story many of us were taught somewhere along the way. But what does the science actually say? Drawing on recent discoveries in astronomy, cosmology, chemistry, biology, and paleontology, Evolution and Intelligent Design in a Nutshell shows how the latest scientific evidence suggests a very different story. Journey into the smallest cell, to the farthest reaches of the universe, and to the great flowering of form and energy known as the Big Bang. Learn about the mission to build a self-reproducing 3D printer, and how those efforts shed new light on the origin of the first life on earth. And travel with a marine biologist to

The Mystery of Life’s Origin

The origin of life from non-life remains one of the most enduring mysteries of modern science. The Mystery of Life’s Origin: The Continuing Controversy investigates how close scientists are to solving that mystery and explores what we are learning about the origin of life from current research in chemistry, physics, astrobiology, biochemistry, and more. The book includes an updated version of the classic text The Mystery of Life’s Origin by Charles Thaxton, Walter Bradley, and Roger Olsen, plus new chapters on the current state of the debate by synthetic organic chemist James Tour at Rice University, author of more than 700 research publications; philosopher of science Stephen C. Meyer, author of Signature in  the Cell; astronomer Guillermo