Wednesday, February 21, 2007

The I'm-Not-A-Patronizing-Prick Delusion

I'm serious--Dawkins is an ass.


Paleobiology said...
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Paleobiology said...

What is it about Richard Dawkins, exactly, that makes him a prick?

And: while I enjoy his books, I've heard such things about him personally from my old evobio grad school friends.

Scott said...

The God Delusion.

Full of immature rants, under-theorized arguments, petulant snarks at opponents, jokes that even Leno would reject, overconfidence in hedonic utilitarianism, a smugness that presumes a strength to current scientific epistemology that is unfounded, along with utter hypocrisy (somehow a multiverse hypothesis is less mystical than a God hypothesis), several pointless chapters, notably one dedicated to showing Einstein was an atheist and another dedicated to showing Hitler was not, a cherry-picking of Christian fundamentalists as representative of theology as a whole, it's painful reading, made completely insufferable by neglecting to show one's opponents the good faith and humble respect that honest debate deserves.

Also the first thing I've read by him.

Jay Goodman Tamboli said...

Whenever I think of Dawkins, I think of the beginning of "The Root of All Evil?," where he mentions religion and then says, "I'm a scientist," accompanied by shots of him riding his bike and looking at fossils. Smug as hell.

I'll see if I can find my copy of The Selfish Gene here to loan to you. If I recall correctly, it's quite good and non-prickish.