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Wed, 01 Feb 2012 15:51:29 GMT
Richard Dawkins: The Blind Watchmaker
A personal view
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The Blind Watchmaker by zoologist Richard Dawkins was probably the first book about biological evolution I have read after high school. The book was upsetting me because I learned that I had somehow managed to confuse Neo-Darwinism with some vague ideas about Lamarckism I remembered from childhood. If you have any doubt as to why a giraffe's neck is elongated, or why the clockwork of a watch is something different than an eye, you should really read this book. The writing style is compelling and the concepts are simple enough to impart the basics to any reader.
Evolution is a profoundly modern subject, at the heart of which are surprisingly not living beings, but as Dawkins champions rather their very genes as replicating entities. Our bodies have evolved as tools that our genes employ to perpetuate themselves – but how about our minds? In this respect, the author is frank in telling us that to further humanity, particularly if ever the meek shall inherit the earth, it may be necessary to actually depart from human nature somewhat, rather than to succumb to its facility.
Evolution not only applies to biology, but turns out to be a universal recipe for the automated refinement of things and for our own genesis as sentient beings – the quantum physicist David Deutsch discusses such implications in his book The Fabric of Reality.
@book{dawkins_blind_2006,
	title = {The Blind Watchmaker},
	isbn = {0141026162},
	publisher = {Penguin},
	author = {Dawkins, Richard},
	month = apr,
	year = {2006}
}

Video documentary on the book

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