Richard Dawkins The God Delusion

So Richard Dawkins’ The God Delusion is #4 on Amazon.com right now and #8 on the New York Times Bestseller list. His shill is simple: Belief in God is irrational and religion has caused irreparable damage to society. Unfortunately, his ideas are a bit too simple. Marilynne Robinson, in an essay in the November issue of Harper’s, thoroughly dismantles the idea that Dawkins possesses even an undergraduate-level grasp of logic. Her review can be found here, and please, please, do your critical reasoning skills a favor and read her critique before you make the mistake of purchasing his book.
Or, here for a similarly scathing review by Terry Eagleton in the London Review of Books.

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3 Responses to Richard Dawkins The God Delusion

  1. Anonymous says:

    hey. The full robinson article can be viewed here: http://darwiniana.com/2006/10/23/marilynne-robinson-on-dawkins/

  2. j_ay says:

    Thanks for the link, your site came up when searching on this essay, so I’ll comment. “Unfortunately, his ideas are a bit too simple.”Hmm, and you write this with having *read* the book? It doesn’t sound like it…Marilynne Robinson, in an essay in the November issue of Harper’s, thoroughly dismantles the idea that Dawkins possesses even an undergraduate-level grasp of logic.This is easily the stupidest thing one could write if one read the book and could bear to stumble through her essay. Even, I’d imagine, reading solely the essay one should easily see its countless faults, random absurd discourses and non-points, and be left with a feeling little other than the authour had her feelings (and/or beliefs) hurt. “and please, please, do your critical reasoning skills a favor and read her critique before you make the mistake of purchasing his book.”So your opinion of being “critical” (let alone “reasoning”, be it a skill or not) is by siding with one view? Wow. Scary, but wow. I’m unfamiliar with Robinson’s life other than her 2 novels, but clearly her assignment clearly offended her belief system thereby left her to write a ‘undergraduate-level’, non-linear, one-sided ranting that she should have had an epiphany over after typing the third paragraph – when she came across the Hawking critique (not only an absurd anecdote, but a pointless one for this essays) – and completely realised she’s “outside the area” of any kind of expertise, let alone “logic” in this manner. If such an essays _were_ handed in at any level of education it should be laughed at and handed back saying, “PLEASE PLEASE, try reading the book”.

  3. Jonathan Dore says:

    “please, please, do your critical reasoning skills a favor and read her critique before you make the mistake of purchasing his book.”Hmmm, doesn’t actually sound as if you’ve read the book yourself, John, yet you feel threatened enough by it to want to put others off. I wonder why?Eagleton’s review is full of the old cultural Catholic’s awed respect for theology, which he castigates Dawkins for being ignorant of, but fails to see that, if God does not exist, then theology is a non-subject, and the criticism is no more meaningful than an astrologer complaining that astronomers are too ignorant of Nostradamus to dismiss their subject. As for Marilynne Robinson’s mendacious misrepresentations and logical mis-steps, a “thorough dismantling” of them — since you seem to enjoy those — by Earl Doherty can be found here: http://home.ca.inter.net/~oblio/AORComment17.htm

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