A C Grayling

A Theory to Believe In

A Reason for Everything: Natural Selection and the English Imagination

By

Faber & Faber 392pp £20 order from our bookshop

UNQUESTIONABLY, THE BIOLOGICAL theory of evolution by adaptive natural selection is one of the most significant ideas in human history. The fact that it remains contested by creationists to this day is proof enough of the impact it has had on humanity’s perception of itself and the world, not least through its effects on religious thought, whose inclusive ambitions to explain the origins, duties and destiny of humankind it has impugned.

Sign Up to our newsletter

Receive free articles, highlights from the archive, news, details of prizes, and much more.

Follow Literary Review on Twitter

  • Last Tweets

    • 'Seventy years on, the time we have left to gather such first-hand testimony is running out.' John Keay on the sig… ,
    • The author 'seethes with contemptuous indignation at the shiny junk that an unregulated construction industry dumps… ,
    • 'The physical courage he demonstrated as a young man [...] gave way to intellectual power; radical thought, gifted… ,
    • 'While Jane Austen didn’t perhaps achieve the full recognition that she deserved in her lifetime, even then she out… ,
    • 'All I have is a voice To undo the folded lie, The romantic lie in the brain Of the sensual man-in-the-street And t… ,
    • 'You are interested in a particular subject; basic research hardens this interest into an obsession, after which th… ,
    • 'Keynes predicted that future generations would enjoy such an improved standard of living that they might work just… ,