Science and Religion: Are They Compatible?by Daniel C. Dennett, Alvin Plantinga
Pub. Date: 09/10/2010
Publisher: Oxford University Press
One of today's most controversial and heated issues is whether or not the conflict between science and religion can be reconciled. In Science and Religion: Are They Compatible?, renowned philosophers Daniel C. Dennett and Alvin Plantinga expand upon the arguments that they presented in an exciting live debate held at the 2009 American Philosophical Association… See more details below
One of today's most controversial and heated issues is whether or not the conflict between science and religion can be reconciled. In Science and Religion: Are They Compatible?, renowned philosophers Daniel C. Dennett and Alvin Plantinga expand upon the arguments that they presented in an exciting live debate held at the 2009 American Philosophical Association Central Division conference.
An enlightening discussion that will motivate students to think critically, Science and Religion: Are They Compatible? opens with Plantinga's assertion that Christianity is compatible with evolutionary theory because Christians believe that God created the living world, and it is entirely possible that God did so by using a process of evolution. Dennett vigorously rejects this argument, provoking a reply from Plantinga, another response from Dennett, and final statements from both sides. As philosophers, the authors possess expert skills in critical analysis; their arguments provide a model of dialogue between those who strongly disagree. Ideal for courses in philosophy of religion, science and religion, and philosophy of science, Science and Religion is also captivating reading for general readers.
Table of Contents
Foreword James P. Sterba vii
Chapter 1 Science and Religion: Where the Conflict Really Lies Alvin Plantinga 1
Chapter 2 Truths that Miss their Mark: Naturalism Unscathed Daniel C. Dennett 25
Chapter 3 Superman vs. God? Alvin Plantinga 39
Chapter 4 Habits of Imagination and their Effect on Incredulity: Reply to Plantinga (Essay 2) Daniel C. Dennett 45
Chapter 5 Naturalism Against Science Alvin Plantinga 57
Chapter 6 No Miracles Needed Daniel C. Dennett 73
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Most Helpful Customer Reviews
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Short Airplane Read The book is inspired by a real encounter between the two thinkers held at the American Philosophical Association (APA) Central Division Meeting in Chicago back in 2009. In an effort to outsmart each other, Alvin Plantinga and Daniel C. Dennett provide us with impressive reasons for believing in their respective positions, Plantinga defending the side of theistic religion and Dennett the side of science. Whether their reasons are indeed objective and rational is for the reader to judge. However, the title of the book is perhaps slightly misleading. The question actually dealt with in this book is whether contemporary evolutionary biology and theistic religion are mutually incompatible. I think the two are highly competent philosophers. Plantinga's work on modal logic is extremely well known, though his opinions are often controversial and I don't think most philosophers share them (surveys actually show that most philosophers are atheists, while Plantinga is a kind of champion of Christian philosophy). Dennett is well known for his work in philosophy of mind, evolution, and more recently, his work on atheism. It was actually the fact that both are heavy weights that made the book really exciting to get and to read. In this debate, audiences might be convinced one way or other depending on the makeup of their background beliefs. This book adds a valuable debate to the contemporary dialogue to the philosophy religion. Would I receommend it? Surely, as I would Reasoned Faith: Essays in Philosophical Theology in Honor of Norman Kretzmann.