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ERIC Number: EJ863724
Record Type: Journal
Publication Date: 2009-Feb
Pages: 5
Abstractor: ERIC
Reference Count: 51
ISSN: ISSN-0002-7685
Putting Darwin in His Place: The Need to Watch Our Language
Braterman, Paul S.; Holbrook, J. Britt
American Biology Teacher, v71 n2 p84-88 Feb 2009
In this article, the authors examine the use of language in debating evolution, and suggest careful choice of the terms by which people describe both themselves and their opponents. Present-day evolution science is solidly based on fact, and is as far advanced from Charles Darwin's original theory as present-day chemistry is from Dalton's atomic theory. For this reason and others, the common practice of referring to the current understanding of evolution as "Darwin's theory" is ill judged, inaccurate, and a public relations blunder. Only partly tongue-in-cheek, the authors also propose language to describe the opponents of evolution science. They suggest "Supernaturalist" as a blanket term for all creationists and intelligent design advocates who deny that biology can ever be explained by the ordinary laws of nature. Within these, the authors distinguish resurgent "Paleyists" who maintain that biological complexity must be the handiwork of a Designer, "Flintstone creationists" who believe that humans and dinosaurs coexisted on a young Earth, and "Occasional creationists" who believe in repeated separate divine creations on multiple occasions for different kinds of organism. (Contains 1 footnote and 3 online resources.)
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Publication Type: Journal Articles; Reports - Descriptive
Education Level: N/A
Audience: N/A
Language: English
Sponsor: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A
Identifiers - Location: Louisiana