Format: Trade Paperback
Dimensions: 464 pages, 3.25 × 2.17 × 0.42 in
Published: January 16, 2008
Publisher: Houghton Mifflin Harcourt
The following ISBNs are associated with this title:
ISBN - 10: 0618918248
ISBN - 13: 9780618918249
About the Book
"Discovery" magazine has recently called Richard Dawkins "Darwins Rottweiler" for his fierce and effective defense of evolution. In his "New York Times" bestseller, Dawkins turns his considerable intellect on religion, denouncing its faulty logic and the suffering it causes.
Table of Contents
CONTENTS Preface 1 1 A DEEPLY RELIGIOUS NON-BELIEVER 9 Deserved respect 11 Undeserved respect 20 2 THE GOD HYPOTHESIS 29 Polytheism 32 Monotheism 37 Secularism, the Founding Fathers and the religion of America 38 The poverty of agnosticism 46 NOMA 54 The Great Prayer Experiment 61 The Neville Chamberlain school of evolutionists 66 Little green men 69 3 ARGUMENTS FOR GOD''S EXISTENCE 75 Thomas Aquinas'' ?proofs'' 77 The ontological argument and other a priori arguments 80 The argument from beauty 86 The argument from personal ?experience'' 87 The argument from scripture 92 The argument from admired religious scientists 97 Pascal''s Wager 103 Bayesian arguments 105 4 WHY THERE ALMOST CERTAINLY IS NO GOD 111 The Ultimate Boeing 747 113 Natural selection as a consciousness-raiser 114 Irreducible complexity 119 The worship of gaps 125 The anthropic principle: planetary version 134 The anthropic principle: cosmological version 141 An interlude at Cambridge 151 5 THE ROOTS OF RELIGION 161 The Darwinian imperative 163 Direct advantages of religion 166 Group selection 169 Religion as a by-product of something else 172 Psychologically primed for religion 179 Tread softly, because you tread on my memes 191 Cargo cults 202 6 THE ROOTS OF MORALITY: WHY ARE WE GOOD? 209 Does our moral sense have a Darwinian origin? 214 A case study in the roots of morality 222 If there is no God, why be good? 226 7 THE ?GOOD'' BOOK AND THE CHANGING MORAL ZEITGEIST 235 The Old Testament 237 Is the New Testa
From the Publisher
A preeminent scientist -- and the world''s most prominent atheist
-- asserts the irrationality of belief in God and the grievous harm
religion has inflicted on society, from the Crusades to 9/11.
With rigor and wit, Dawkins examines God in all his forms, from the
sex-obsessed tyrant of the Old Testament to the more benign (but
still illogical) Celestial Watchmaker favored by some Enlightenment
thinkers. He eviscerates the major arguments for religion and
demonstrates the supreme improbability of a supreme being. He shows
how religion fuels war, foments bigotry, and abuses children,
buttressing his points with historical and contemporary evidence.
The God Delusion makes a compelling case that belief in God is not
just wrong but potentially deadly. It also offers exhilarating
insight into the advantages of atheism to the individual and
society, not the least of which is a clearer, truer appreciation of
the universe''s wonders than any faith could ever muster.
About the Author
Richard Dawkins taught zoology at the University of California
at Berkeley and at Oxford University and is now the Charles Simonyi
Professor of the Public Understanding of Science at Oxford, a
position he has held since 1995. Among his previous books are The
Ancestor?s Tale, The Selfish Gene, The Blind Watchmaker, Climbing
Mount Improbable, Unweaving the Rainbow, and A Devil?s Chaplain.
Dawkins lives in Oxford with his wife, the actress and artist Lalla
"A powerful argument for how to think about the place of religion
in the modern world. It''s going to be a classic." -- Seed
"In the roiling debate between science and religion, it would be
hard to exaggerate the enormous influence of Richard Dawkins."
"A particularly comprehensive case against religion. Everyone
should read it. Atheists will love Mr. Dawkins''s incisive logic
and rapier wit, and theists will find few better tests of the
robustness of their faith." --Economist
"If I had to identify Dawkins''s cardinal virtues, I would say that
he is brilliant, articulate, impassioned, and impolite . . .The God
Delusion is a fine and significant book." The San Francisco