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The Scopes Trial: Faith, Science, and American Education

The Scopes Trial: Faith, Science, and American Education

by Michael Burgan

Editorial Reviews

Children's Literature - David Adams
"They can't make a monkey out of me." "A duel to the death." "The trial of the century." Such were the hyperbolic phrases of the Scopes trial, the legal battle that some consider the forerunner to modern-day conflicts between religion and science in education. The content of the book takes a more measured approach to the trial, of course, yet it does introduce the court case in the context of conflict between faith and science in the American educational system. The reader first encounters a presentation of legal issues, major figures, and the interaction of media, popular culture, and the perhaps unlikely venue of a small Tennessee town. That is followed by background on Charles Darwin and some of the earlier battles that preceded Scopes. The final chapters consider the fallout of Scopes and contemporary legal battles, including those over creation science and intelligent design. This book does a nice job of presenting perhaps the most famous case ever on religion vs. evolution, and also presenting an overview of the subject. The irony of Scopes, of course, was that this most famous of trials never got past the Tennessee Supreme Court. The author dutifully notes the more mundane items of "the trial of the century," such as a small town that saw the trial as a way to boost it economy, and the fact that defendant John Scopes had not really taught the evolution section of the textbook. The magnanimity of figures likes Bryan and Darrow blends well with the reality of a schoolteacher who simply violated the Butler Act. The lessons of myth, historical fact, and contemporary legal issues make this book ideal for assignments and classroom discussion. Includes photos, sidebars, a timeline, notes, a bibliography, and an index. This book is part of the "Perspectives On..." series. Reviewer: David Adams

Product Details

Cavendish, Marshall Corporation
Publication date:
Perspectives on Series
Product dimensions:
5.80(w) x 8.80(h) x 0.50(d)
Age Range:
14 - 17 Years

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