Abusing Science: The Case Against Creationism / Edition 1

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Abusing Science is a manual for intellectual self-defense, the most complete available for presenting the case against Creationist pseudo-science. It is also a lucid exposition of the nature and methods of genuine science. The book begins with a concise introduction to evolutionary theory for non-scientists and closes with a rebuttal of the charge that this theory undermines religious and moral values. It will astonish many readers that this case must still be made in the 1980s, but since it must, Philip Kitcher makes it irresistibly and forcefully.Not long ago, a federal court struck down an Arkansas law requiring that "scientific" Creationism be taught in high school science classes. Contemporary Creationists may have lost one legal battle, but their cause continues to thrive. Their efforts are directed not only at state legislatures but at local school boards and textbook publishers. As Kitcher argues in this rigorous but highly readable book, the integrity of science is under attack. The methods of inquiry used in evolutionary biology are those which are used throughout the sciences. Moreover, modern biology is intertwined with other fields of science—physics, chemistry, astronomy, and geology. Creationists hope to persuade the public that education in science should be torn apart to make room for a literal reading of Genesis.Abusing Science refutes the popular complaint that the scientific establishment is dogmatic and intolerant,denying "academic freedom" to the unorthodox. It examines Creationist claims seriously and systematically, one by one, showing clearly just why they are at best misguided, at worst ludicrous.

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What People Are Saying

From the Publisher
"A marvelously lucid summary of the evidence for evolution and the overwhelming case against its enemies.... As a philosopher concerned with the way science operates, Kitcher is good at showing how creationists distort Karl Popper"s views on scientific method, and how they misuse such books as Thomas Kuhn"s Structure of Scientific Revolutions. He is equally skillful at showing how creationists persist in quoting out of context Stephen Jay Gould and other "punctuation ists".... " Martin Gardner, Discover
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780262610377
  • Publisher: MIT Press
  • Publication date: 6/23/1983
  • Edition description: Reprint
  • Edition number: 1
  • Pages: 223
  • Sales rank: 315,429
  • Product dimensions: 5.87 (w) x 9.00 (h) x 0.43 (d)

Meet the Author

Philip Kitcher is Professor of Philosophy at the University of Minnesota, and Director of its Center for the Philosophy of Science. Kitcher is the author of a searching book on "Scientific" Creationism, Abusing Science, published by The MIT Press in 1982.

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Sort by: Showing all of 4 Customer Reviews
  • Anonymous

    Posted April 3, 2004

    A stellar piece of work!

    This book is an absolute must have for the science teacher. The creationists rely on the open mind of most teachers to obfuscate and confuse with half-truths and outright deception. This book examines the creationist's claims one-by-one and exposes the falsities in each of their arguments. Kitcher's work should be required reading in all teacher-training programs as it explains clearly and succinctly what science is and how it works help us understand the world around us. Lastly, this is the kind of book that you will want to read several times just because it is so darned good! Another good book in this vain is Carl Sagan's 'The Demon-Haunted World' ISBN 039453512X

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  • Anonymous

    Posted February 2, 2001

    A superbly written book

    Abusing Science is an excellent refutation of so-called Creation 'Science.' This book effectively destroys the fallacies routinely disseminated as scientific fact by proponents of Creation. I first read Abusing Science after coming across it by chance at a public library and immediately had to own it. (It's the first book I've felt strongly enough to review, if that says anything.) It is an invaluable tool for anyone who has ever wanted to understand the creation/evolution debate and to see why creationism fails (severely) to qualify as a science.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted March 16, 2000

    Exposing Creationist Fallacies Against Evolution

    Abusing Science is a wonderful book that places so-called Creation 'Science' in a true scientific light. The actual intent of the book is not really to prove evolution but rather to expose the out of context quotes, fallacies, and misinformation that creation 'scientists' use in an attempt to discredit evolution. Philip Kitcher takes each of the creationist attacks and analyzes their scientific validity. As you follow his arguments you discover there is little or no science in the creationist's' claims. What science you are able to discern has been taken out of context, warped or simply misunderstood by creationist's. Kitcher first takes the reader on a short historical tour of both evolution and creationism. He does this in order to arm the reader with enough background information for even the uninitiated to understand both sides of the debate. He also discusses the philosophy of science so that we may understand how scientists formulate their theories. Only then does he make his foray into creationist arguments against evolution. At this point the reading becomes engrossing as you follow Kitcher's discussions as he destroys the creationist's arguments one by one. In the end he exposes creation science as really being non-science. He also discusses the ramifications of following the beliefs of creation 'science' as if it were a true science. When you make the decision whether to read this book or not I must give you an observation concerning the previous review. After reading it I felt compelled to write this review of Abusing Science to give a balanced view. It is clear to me that the gentleman either did not read the book or did not read it in its entirety. It is the only thing that can explain how his review could have entirely missed the point of the book. Including his interpretation of Kitcher's alleged 'acknowledgment' of the only alternative to evolution.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted December 15, 1999

    Typical Microevolution Proves Macroevolution Propaganda

    Kitcher abuses science. He tries to sell us molecules-to-man evolution based on trivial changes of gene frequences in populations. But at least he acknowledges that special creation is the only alternative to evolution. Very few of his fellow evolutionists are willing to admit that fact. For a refutation of Kitcher's fallacies in this book, see Gish, Duane T. 1993. Creation Scientists Answer Their Critics.

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