The Blind Watchmaker Why the Evidence of Evolution Reveals a Universe without Design

Richard Dawkins’s classic remains the definitive argument for our modern understanding of evolution. The Blind Watchmaker is the seminal text for understanding evolution today.

Author: Richard Dawkins

Publisher: W. W. Norton & Company

ISBN: 0393353095

Category: Science

Page: 496

View: 678

Richard Dawkins’s classic remains the definitive argument for our modern understanding of evolution. The Blind Watchmaker is the seminal text for understanding evolution today. In the eighteenth century, theologian William Paley developed a famous metaphor for creationism: that of the skilled watchmaker. In The Blind Watchmaker, Richard Dawkins crafts an elegant riposte to show that the complex process of Darwinian natural selection is unconscious and automatic. If natural selection can be said to play the role of a watchmaker in nature, it is a blind one—working without foresight or purpose. In an eloquent, uniquely persuasive account of the theory of natural selection, Dawkins illustrates how simple organisms slowly change over time to create a world of enormous complexity, diversity, and beauty.

The Blind Watchmaker

Acclaimed as perhaps the most influential work on evolution written in this century, The Blind Watchmaker offers an engaging and accessible introduction to one of the most important scientific discoveries of all time.

Author: Richard Dawkins

Publisher: Penguin UK

ISBN: 9780141026169

Category: Biodiversity

Page: 340

View: 121

Patiently and lucidly, this Los Angeles Times Book Award and Royal Society of Literature Heinemann Prize winner identifies the aspects of the theory of evolution that people find hard to believe and removes the barriers to credibility one by one. "As readable and vigorous a defense of Darwinism as has been published since 1859".--The Economist.

The Oxford Handbook of Innovation

Box 18.2 Evolution and the blind watchmaker Let us use Richard Dawkins's
metaphor of the blind watchmaker to illustrate the general idea behind economic
growth as an evolutionary process. Dawkins's story starts from the idea of William

Author: Jan Fagerberg

Publisher: OUP Oxford

ISBN: 0191569119

Category: Business & Economics

Page: 674

View: 555

This handbook looks to provide academics and students with a comprehensive and holistic understanding of the phenomenon of innovation. Innovation spans a number of fields within the social sciences and humanities: Management, Economics, Geography, Sociology, Politics, Psychology, and History. Consequently, the rapidly increasing body of literature on innovation is characterized by a multitude of perspectives based on, or cutting across, existing disciplines and specializations. Scholars of innovation can come from such diverse starting points that much of this literature can be missed, and so constructive dialogues missed. The editors of The Oxford Handbook of Innovation have carefully selected and designed twenty-one contributions from leading academic experts within their particular field, each focusing on a specific aspect of innovation. These have been organized into four main sections, the first of which looks at the creation of innovations, with particular focus on firms and networks. Section Two provides an account of the wider systematic setting influencing innovation and the role of institutions and organizations in this context. Section Three explores some of the diversity in the working of innovation over time and across different sectors of the economy, and Section Four focuses on the consequences of innovation with respect to economic growth, international competitiveness, and employment. An introductory overview, concluding remarks, and guide to further reading for each chapter, make this handbook a key introduction and vital reference work for researchers, academics, and advanced students of innovation.

Gaither s Dictionary of Scientific Quotations

The Blind Watchmaker Chapter 1 (p. 1) W.W. Norton & Company, Inc. New York,
New York, USA. 1986 ...Darwin made it possible to be an intellectually fulfilled
atheist. The Blind Watchmaker Chapter 1 (p. 6) W.W. Norton & Company, Inc.

Author: Carl C. Gaither

Publisher: Springer Science & Business Media

ISBN: 1461411149

Category: Science

Page: 2867

View: 307

This unprecedented collection of 27,000 quotations is the most comprehensive and carefully researched of its kind, covering all fields of science and mathematics. With this vast compendium you can readily conceptualize and embrace the written images of scientists, laymen, politicians, novelists, playwrights, and poets about humankind's scientific achievements. Approximately 9000 high-quality entries have been added to this new edition to provide a rich selection of quotations for the student, the educator, and the scientist who would like to introduce a presentation with a relevant quotation that provides perspective and historical background on his subject. Gaither's Dictionary of Scientific Quotations, Second Edition, provides the finest reference source of science quotations for all audiences. The new edition adds greater depth to the number of quotations in the various thematic arrangements and also provides new thematic categories.

Darwinism Defeated

The Blind Watchmaker Thesis Romans 1 : 20 tells us that , “ since the creation of
the world , God ' s invisible qualities – his eternal power and divine nature - have
been clearly seen , being understood from what has been made . ” Some of us ...

Author: Phillip E. Johnson

Publisher: Regent College Publishing

ISBN: 9781573831338

Category: Philosophy

Page: 174

View: 269

Fundamentals of Natural Computing

The main goal of the Blind Watchmaker is to design an emergent biology of
biomorphs based on the following neo-Darwinian processes of evolution:
random mutation followed by selection (Dawkins, 1988). In natural life, the form of
each ...

Author: Leandro Nunes de Castro

Publisher: CRC Press

ISBN: 1420011448

Category: Science

Page: 696

View: 559

Natural computing brings together nature and computing to develop new computational tools for problem solving; to synthesize natural patterns and behaviors in computers; and to potentially design novel types of computers. Fundamentals of Natural Computing: Basic Concepts, Algorithms, and Applications presents a wide-ranging survey of novel techniques and important applications of nature-based computing. This book presents theoretical and philosophical discussions, pseudocodes for algorithms, and computing paradigms that illustrate how computational techniques can be used to solve complex problems, simulate nature, explain natural phenomena, and possibly allow the development of new computing technologies. The author features a consistent and approachable, textbook-style format that includes lucid figures, tables, real-world examples, and different types of exercises that complement the concepts while encouraging readers to apply the computational tools in each chapter. Building progressively upon core concepts of nature-inspired techniques, the topics include evolutionary computing, neurocomputing, swarm intelligence, immunocomputing, fractal geometry, artificial life, quantum computing, and DNA computing. Fundamentals of Natural Computing is a self-contained introduction and a practical guide to nature-based computational approaches that will find numerous applications in a variety of growing fields including engineering, computer science, biological modeling, and bioinformatics.

Concise Oxford Dictionary of Quotations

'The West's Asleep' (1846) Richard Dawkins English biologist 6 [Natural selection
] has no vision, no foresight, no sight at all. If it can be said to play the role of
watchmaker in nature, it is the blind watchmaker. The Blind Watchmaker (1986)

Author: Susan Ratcliffe

Publisher: Oxford University Press, USA

ISBN: 0198614179

Category: Reference

Page: 580

View: 483

Provides coverage of literary and historical quotations. An easy-to-use keyword index traces quotations and their authors, while the appendix material, including Catchphrases, Film Lines, Official Advice, and Political Slogans, offers further topics of interest.

Oxford Dictionary of Modern Quotations

If it can be said to play the role of watchmaker in nature, it is the blind watchmaker
. in this book Dawkins discussed evolution by natural selection and suggested
that the theory could answer the fundamental question of why life exists The Blind

Author: Elizabeth Knowles

Publisher: Oxford University Press

ISBN: 0199208956

Category: Reference

Page: 479

View: 812

More than five thousand quotations, that range in time from Scott's Antarctic expedition in 1912 to the attack on the World Trade Center in 2001, are gathered in a comprehensive, updated resource that evokes a fascinating picture of the social, political, cultural, and scientific highlights of modern times.

Science Religion and the Search for Extraterrestrial Intelligence

If it can be said to play the role of watchmaker in nature, it is the blind watchmaker
. (Dawkins, 2000: 5) The Divine designer is dethroned by the blind watchmaker.
That is, there is no innate drive to complex life, intelligence, and consciousness.

Author: David Wilkinson

Publisher: OUP Oxford

ISBN: 019166961X

Category: Science

Page: 240

View: 203

If the discovery of life elsewhere in the universe is just around the corner, what would be the consequences for religion? Would it represent another major conflict between science and religion, even leading to the death of faith? Some would suggest that the discovery of any suggestion of extraterrestrial life would have a greater impact than even the Copernican and Darwinian revolutions. It is now over 50 years since the first modern scientific papers were published on the search for extraterrestrial intelligence (SETI). Yet the religious implications of this search and possible discovery have never been systematically addressed in the scientific or theological arena. SETI is now entering its most important era of scientific development. New observation techniques are leading to the discovery of extra-solar planets daily, and the Kepler mission has already collected over 1000 planetary candidates. This deluge of data is transforming the scientific and popular view of the existence of extraterrestrial intelligence. Earth-like planets outside of our solar system can now be identified and searched for signs of life. Now is a crucial time to assess the scientific and theological questions behind this search. This book sets out the scientific arguments undergirding SETI, with particular attention to the uncertainties in arguments and the strength of the data already assembled. It assesses not only the discovery of planets but other areas such as the Fermi paradox, the origin and evolution of intelligent life, and current SETI strategies. In all of this it reflects on how these questions are shaped by history and pop culture and their relationship with religion, especially Christian theology. It is argued that theologians need to take seriously SETI and to examine some central doctrines such as creation, incarnation, revelation, and salvation in the light of the possibility of extraterrestrial life.

On Our Minds

The Blind Watchmaker Meets the Scatterbrained Computer Programmer
Epigraph: ... Richard Dawkins, The Blind Watchmaker: Why the Evidence of
Evolution Reveals a Universe without Design (New York: W. W. Norton, 1996). 2.
Quoted in ...

Author: Eric M. Gander

Publisher: JHU Press

ISBN: 0801881382

Category: Science

Page: 312

View: 228

There is no question more fundamental to human existence than that posed by the nature-versus-nurture debate. For much of the past century, it was widely believed that there was no essential human nature and that people could be educated or socialized to thrive in almost any imaginable culture. Today, that orthodoxy is being directly and forcefully challenged by a new science of the mind: evolutionary psychology. Like the theory of evolution itself, the implications of evolutionary psychology are provocative and unsettling. Rather than viewing the human mind as a mysterious black box or a blank slate, evolutionary psychologists see it as a physical organ that has evolved to process certain types of information in certain ways that enables us to thrive only in certain types of cultures. In On Our Minds, Eric M. Gander examines all sides of the public debate between evolutionary psychologists and their critics. Paying particularly close attention to the popular science writings of Steven Pinker, Edward O. Wilson, Richard Dawkins, and Stephen Jay Gould, Gander traces the history of the controversy, succinctly summarizes the claims and theories of the evolutionary psychologists, dissects the various arguments deployed by each side, and considers in detail the far-reaching ramifications—social, cultural, and political—of this debate. Gander's lucid and highly readable account concludes that evolutionary psychology now holds the potential to answer our oldest and most profound moral and philosophical questions, fundamentally changing our self–perception as a species.

Community without Community in Digital Culture

All appearances to the contrary,theonly watchmaker in nature is the blind force of
physics, albeit deployed in a very special way. A true watchmaker has foresight:
he designs his cogs and springs, and plans their interconnections, with a future ...

Author: C. Gere

Publisher: Springer

ISBN: 1137026677

Category: Social Science

Page: 191

View: 864

Community Without Community in Digital Culture presents the view that our digital culture is determined not by greater connection, but by the separation and gap that is a necessary concomitant of our fundamental technicity.

Climbing Mount Improbable

The Blind Watchmaker embryology was not kaleidoscopic in the right way. It
lacked the requisite number of 'mirrors'. In fact, as we have seen, some freak
echinoderms depart from five-way symmetry and I 'cheated' by simulating starfish,

Author: Richard Dawkins

Publisher: W. W. Norton & Company

ISBN: 0393070522

Category: Science

Page: 352

View: 469

A brilliant book celebrating improbability as the engine that drives life, by the acclaimed author of The Selfish Gene and The Blind Watchmaker. The human eye is so complex and works so precisely that surely, one might believe, its current shape and function must be the product of design. How could such an intricate object have come about by chance? Tackling this subject—in writing that the New York Times called "a masterpiece"—Richard Dawkins builds a carefully reasoned and lovingly illustrated argument for evolutionary adaptation as the mechanism for life on earth. The metaphor of Mount Improbable represents the combination of perfection and improbability that is epitomized in the seemingly "designed" complexity of living things. Dawkins skillfully guides the reader on a breathtaking journey through the mountain's passes and up its many peaks to demonstrate that following the improbable path to perfection takes time. Evocative illustrations accompany Dawkins's eloquent descriptions of extraordinary adaptations such as the teeming populations of figs, the intricate silken world of spiders, and the evolution of wings on the bodies of flightless animals. And through it all runs the thread of DNA, the molecule of life, responsible for its own destiny on an unending pilgrimage through time. Climbing Mount Improbable is a book of great impact and skill, written by the most prominent Darwinian of our age.

The Engine of Complexity

Climbing Mount Improbable is Dawkins's sequel to The Blind Watchmaker. In this
book he tries to make clearer some points that readers of the earlier book
misinterpreted or failed to understand. In keeping with its purpose, it is somewhat

Author: John E. Mayfield

Publisher: Columbia University Press

ISBN: 0231535287

Category: Science

Page: 416

View: 713

The concepts of evolution and complexity theory have become part of the intellectual ether permeating the life sciences, the social and behavioral sciences, and, more recently, management science and economics. In this book, John E. Mayfield elegantly synthesizes core concepts from multiple disciplines to offer a new approach to understanding how evolution works and how complex organisms, structures, organizations, and social orders can and do arise based on information theory and computational science. Intended for the intellectually adventuresome, this book challenges and rewards readers with a nuanced understanding of evolution and complexity that offers consistent, durable, and coherent explanations for major aspects of our life experiences. Numerous examples throughout the book illustrate evolution and complexity formation in action and highlight the core function of computation lying at the work's heart.

The Oxford Handbook of Atheism

A true watchmaker has foresight: he designs his cogs and springs, and plans
their interconnections, with a future purpose in his mind's eye. Natural selection,
the blind, unconscious automatic process which Darwin discovered, and which
we ...

Author: Stephen Bullivant

Publisher: OUP Oxford

ISBN: 0191667404

Category: Religion

Page: 784

View: 823

Recent books by, among others, Sam Harris, Richard Dawkins, and Christopher Hitchens have thrust atheism firmly into the popular, media, and academic spotlight. This so-called New Atheism is arguably the most striking development in western socio-religious culture of the past decade or more. As such, it has spurred fertile (and often heated) discussions both within, and between, a diverse range of disciplines. Yet atheism, and the New Atheism, are by no means co-extensive. Interesting though it indeed is, the New Atheism is a single, historically and culturally specific manifestation of positive atheism (the that there is/are no God/s), which is itself but one form of a far deeper, broader, and more significant global phenomenon. The Oxford Handbook of Atheism is a pioneering edited volume, exploring atheism—understood in the broad sense of 'an absence of belief in the existence of a God or gods'—in all the richness and diversity of its historical and contemporary expressions. Bringing together an international team of established and emerging scholars, it probes the varied manifestations and implications of unbelief from an array of disciplinary perspectives (philosophy, history, sociology, anthropology, demography, psychology, natural sciences, gender and sexuality studies, literary criticism, film studies, musicology) and in a range of global contexts (Western Europe, North America, post-communist Europe, the Islamic world, Japan, India). Both surveying and synthesizing previous work, and presenting the major fruits of innovative recent research, the handbook is set to be a landmark text for the study of atheism.

Natural History of Host Parasite Interactions

BLIND. WATCHMAKER. In what is the most well-known argument from design,
the Reverend William Paley (1802) said that just as we conclude that a watch we
find lying on the ground must have had a creator, then so too must other complex


Publisher: Academic Press

ISBN: 9780080950884

Category: Medical

Page: 366

View: 496

This volume covers a wide range of systems, exemplified by a broad spectrum of micro- and macro-parasites, impacting humans, domestic and wild animals and plants. It illustrates the importance of evolutionary considerations and concepts, both as thinking tools for qualitative understanding or as guiding tools for decision making in major disease control programs. * Brings together a range of articles from scientists from different fields of research and/or disease control, but with a common interest in studying the biology of a variety of parasitic diseases * Evolutionary theory has an important role to play in both the interpretation of host and parasitic dynamics and the design and application of disease control programs

The Mythology of Evolution

In 1986, Dawkins published a book that was precisely a retort to Paley's
watchmaker analogy, namely The Blind Watchmaker. Dawkins accepts the
premise of the design argument – that the apparent complexity of the world is in
need of ...

Author: Chris Bateman

Publisher: John Hunt Publishing

ISBN: 1780996500

Category: Science

Page: 278

View: 823

This book liberates evolution from misrepresentative scientific myths to find a more nuanced vision of life that shows how advantages persist, trust is beneficial, and the diversity of species emerges.

First Things

The real untangling that needs to be accomplished consists in separating
pseudoscience , the “ blind watchmaker thesis ” of evolution , from genuine or
falsifiable science . Professor Barr admits that “ historically evolution has been
harmful to ...




Category: Religion


View: 356

Biology and Ideology from Descartes to Dawkins

The Blind Watchmaker, Richard Dawkins quotes from the eighteenth- century
Anglican theologian William Paley's Natural Theology (1802) the famous analogy
between a watch and objects in nature. “[E]very indication of contrivance,” wrote ...

Author: Denis R. Alexander

Publisher: University of Chicago Press

ISBN: 0226608425

Category: Science

Page: 416

View: 205

Over the course of human history, the sciences, and biology in particular, have often been manipulated to cause immense human suffering. For example, biology has been used to justify eugenic programs, forced sterilization, human experimentation, and death camps—all in an attempt to support notions of racial superiority. By investigating the past, the contributors to Biology and Ideology from Descartes to Dawkins hope to better prepare us to discern ideological abuse of science when it occurs in the future. Denis R. Alexander and Ronald L. Numbers bring together fourteen experts to examine the varied ways science has been used and abused for nonscientific purposes from the fifteenth century to the present day. Featuring an essay on eugenics from Edward J. Larson and an examination of the progress of evolution by Michael J. Ruse, Biology and Ideology examines uses both benign and sinister, ultimately reminding us that ideological extrapolation continues today. An accessible survey, this collection will enlighten historians of science, their students, practicing scientists, and anyone interested in the relationship between science and culture.

My Revision Notes Edexcel AS Religious Studies Foundations Philosophy of Religion and Ethics

If it can be said to play the role of the watchmaker in nature, it is the blind
watchmaker'. (The Blind Watchmaker, 1986) Evil and suffering The existence of
evil and suffering is an important challenge to the Design Argument: ' In Nature
and ...

Author: Gordon Reid

Publisher: Hachette UK

ISBN: 1444182455

Category: Religion

Page: 64

View: 319

Unlock your full potential with this revision guide which provides both the key content you need to know and guidance on how to apply it for better grades. My Revision Notes: Edexcel AS Religious Studies Foundations: Philosophy of Religion and Ethics helps you to stay motivated and focused during your revision - and gives you the opportunity to practise and refine your skills to achieve the best grade in your exam. Breaks down all topics into short sections - easy to read and revise from Exam-style practice questions help confidence with the exam Concise notes, clear layout and colourful features keep you engaged You can check your learning with the 'test yourself' questions and tick-box design.

Science of Discworld III Darwin s Watch

Ridcully, | still remains powerful, powerful enough for Richard Dawkins to title his
neo-Darwinian riposte of 1986 The Blind Watchmaker Dawkins* made it clear ...

Author: Ian Stewart

Publisher: Random House

ISBN: 1407022695

Category: Science

Page: 352

View: 386

Roundworld is in trouble again, and this time it looks fatal. Having created it in the first place, the wizards of Unseen Univeristy feel vaguely responsible for its safety. They know the creatures who lived there escaped the impending Big Freeze by inventing the space elevator - they even intervened to rid the planet of a plague of elves, who attempted to divert humanity onto a different time track. But now it's all gone wrong - Victorian England has stagnated and the pace of progress would embarrass a limping snail. Unless something drastic is done, there won't be time for anyone to invent spaceflight and the human race will be turned into ice-pops. Why, though, did history come adrift? Was it Sir Arthur Nightingale's dismal book about natural selection? Or was it the devastating response by an obscure country vicar called Charles Darwin, whose bestselling Theology of Species made it impossible to refute the divine design of living creatures? Either way, it's no easy task to change history, as the wizards discover to their cost. Can the God of Evolution come to humanity's aid and ensure Darwin writes a very different book? And who stopped him writing it in the first place?