Dawkins Paper

Dr. Dawkins wrote this book for the very specific purpose of providing copious examples to support evolutionary change over time through the mechanism of natural selection. In the preface (vii) he comments, ?this book is my personal summary of the evidence that the ‘theory’ of evolution is actually a fact – as incontrovertible a fact as any in science". Dawkins then proceeds to provide specific examples of evolution in each subsequent chapter. You may find it helpful to explain what Dawkins presented in each chapter to someone unfamiliar with the mechanism of natural selection. Doing this often helps solidify your understanding.

This assignment must be typed in 12- point font, double-spaced and a minimum of five pages. Be sure to cite all direct quotes with quotation marks followed by a reference indicating the author and page number. For example: (Gould p. 86). Be sure to provide bibliography of all original sources you referenced. Wikipedia references are not acceptable. Extensive quotes with few of your own words will reduce the possible points you can receive. Another factor that will reduce your points will be spelling and grammatical errors. Be sure and use your computer’s spell and grammar checker. Reading your completing paper aloud helps to discover errors. Having someone edit your paper is also beneficial. Most importantly, the paper you submit must reflect YOUR thinking and work. Any indication or suggestion that your paper is not your creation will entail penalties.

Please address the following questions in your paper:

1) First describe artificial selection, natural selection, intelligent design and then describe how each concept differs from the others. Be sure to provide examples to illustrate your points.

2) In page 85 Dawkins states "…evolutionary scientists are in the position of detectives who come late to a scene of a crime." what does he mean in this statement? What kind of evidence does he provide to support how science determines temporal sequence? Be sure to provide examples to illustrate your points.

3) One point often repeated by those unfamiliar with evolutionary process is, "There are no knew species after the act of creation." Describe how Dawkins responds to this statement. What evidence does he provide to counter this claim that speciation does not occur? Be sure to provide examples to illustrate your points.

4) Dawkins sates,"… we shall continually find examples of evolution correcting an initial ‘mistake’ or historical relic by post hoc compensation or tweaking, rather than going back to the drawing board as a real designer would." explain and describe what Dawkins is referring to by evolution correcting initial mistakes be sure to provide examples to illustrate your points.

5) After completing the book discuss wether or not Dawkins had an impact on your understanding of the evolutionary process, basically, has your thinking change. However you respond to this question,yes or no, clearly define and support your response. You might imagine yourself giving your final speech to jury just before they leave the dock to deliberate.

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