CHF 2013: Animal

Darwin's Biology of Intelligent Design

Followers of Charles Darwin and proponents of intelligent design stare each other down across a chasm. After all, On the Origin of Species defined natural selection and spawned the theory of evolution, while intelligent design points to evidence of design in support of the idea of a supreme creator. Yet, when closely examined, Darwin’s ideas clearly adhere to some of the same tenets as intelligent design. University of Chicago historian of science Robert J. Richards provides a careful explanation of Darwin’s theory, revealing a fascinating perspective on the role of God and morality in the great scientist’s work.

Images by Alissa Zhu

Speakers and Performers

Robert Richards

Robert J. Richards is the Morris Fishbein Distinguished Service Professor at University of Chicago. He is the author of several books on the development of evolutionary theory; he also writes on German Romanticism. His most recent book is Was Hitler a Darwinian?

CHF Suggests      Related links and resources for further study

Leaders And Thinkers

Robert Richards
Personal website hosted by The University of Chicago

Good Reads

Darwin's Theory of Natural Selection and Its Moral Purpose
Professor Richards reconsiders some commonly held views of natural selection [pdf]
Planet of the Apes
Philadelphia Inquirer article about Darwin's forgotten eighteenth-century French predecessor, Jean Baptiste Lamarck

Online Resources

Debating Darwin
The website of the ongoing project hosted by the Fishbein Center at the University of Chicago
Darwin's Natural Theology
A talk given by Professor Richards on Charles Darwin's consideration of morality in human evolution [audio]