All entries by this author

Polly Toynbee on Multiculturalism *

Apr 11th, 2004 | Filed by

Breaking with unctuous, unthinking platitudes about diversity.… Read the rest

Will Hutton on Fundamentalism *

Apr 11th, 2004 | Filed by

When religion provides ‘meaning’ the need to impose it on others is strong.… Read the rest

What is Multiculturalism Anyway? *

Apr 11th, 2004 | Filed by

Does it mean separateness, acceptance, learning from other cultures, inclusion?… Read the rest

Martha Nussbaum on Liberal Education *

Apr 11th, 2004 | Filed by

Education that can liberate minds from bondage to mere habit and tradition.… Read the rest

To Be Young, Angry and Striking a Pose *

Apr 11th, 2004 | Filed by

Maybe ‘different communities’ shouldn’t be treated differently after all.… Read the rest

Rwanda Outlaws Ethnicity *

Apr 10th, 2004 | Filed by

If awareness of ethnic differences can be learned, it can be unlearned.… Read the rest

Washington Post on Hindutva v. Scholarship *

Apr 10th, 2004 | Filed by

Threats against US scholars such as Doniger, Laine and Courtright.… Read the rest

Bush Science Aide Defends Record *

Apr 9th, 2004 | Filed by

Administration rejects claims that it distorts or suppresses scientific information.… Read the rest

The Economist on Bush v. Science *

Apr 9th, 2004 | Filed by

‘Politicians can cheat nature no more effectively than scientists can.’… Read the rest

Pope Causes Trouble Again *

Apr 9th, 2004 | Filed by

John Paul II says hospitals should tube-feed patients in persistent vegetative state.… Read the rest

The Designer

Apr 8th, 2004 11:30 pm | By

I might change or expand one sentence in the Science and Religion In Focus, because I’ve had some email and blog comments on it. It is a tad assertive. ‘The side that has it wrong, that ignores evidence and logic and just believes, never shuts up.’

Mind you, I think it’s true, but I can see why it needs justification. But the fact is religion does have a special epistemic status, which surely even believers are aware of if they’re honest about it. Believers are not usually embarrassed to talk of belief or faith in their religion – to talk of religious belief or faith – as opposed to knowledge. They must realize there’s a difference between ‘faith’ and knowledge, … Read the rest

The Next Two Hours I Have to be at my PlayStation *

Apr 8th, 2004 | Filed by

Whither the underground? David Bromwich wonders.… Read the rest

Faking Racial Incident Not a Good Plan *

Apr 8th, 2004 | Filed by

Police say victim staged vandalism of her own car.… Read the rest

Visual Illusions and the Brain *

Apr 8th, 2004 | Filed by

It’s really not moving.… Read the rest

Philosophy Has Its Uses *

Apr 8th, 2004 | Filed by

When everything but pedophilia is negotiable, philosophy can help to ground ethics.… Read the rest

Huh Huh Huh Eeek Uh Uh Oooowaaah! *

Apr 8th, 2004 | Filed by

Animal psychologists at London Zoological Society say we should talk like chimps.… Read the rest


Apr 7th, 2004 10:07 pm | By

Something more from that article by Paul Davies in the Atlantic, which answers a question I’ve been wondering about for a longish time.

Even if Homo sapiens as such may not be the unique focus of God’s attention, the broader class of all humanlike beings in the universe might be. This is the basic idea espoused by the philosopher Michael Ruse, an ardent Darwinian and an agnostic sympathetic to Christianity. He sees the incremental progress of natural evolution as God’s chosen mode of creation, and the history of life as a ladder that leads inexorably from microbes to man.

The question that’s been puzzling me is about Michael Ruse, because some of his work that I’ve read sounds quite … Read the rest

Richard Dawkins Set To Music *

Apr 7th, 2004 | Filed by

And a singer who doesn’t believe in evolution. You couldn’t make it up.… Read the rest

Rwanda Genocide and ‘African’ Correctness *

Apr 7th, 2004 | Filed by

Emmanuel Dongala says solidarity can prevent people from speaking out.… Read the rest

Academics Hinder Fight Against Terror *

Apr 7th, 2004 | Filed by

Attitudes formed in the 1960s have resulted in an anti-Americanism.… Read the rest