A C Grayling

Evolutionary Minds

A Devil's Chaplain

By

Weidenfeld & Nicolson 264pp £16.99 order from our bookshop

DNA: The Secret of Life

By

Heinemann 446pp £20 order from our bookshop

IT WAS WITH relief that I found one thing to disagree with in Richard Dawkins’s A Devil’s Chaplain. He is sceptical about the value of juries, having thrice served on one. My own experience in this respect suggests that an almost random grouping of twelve adults produces a heartening aggregate of good sense, responsibility and concern, and I would rather entrust my safety to a jury than to a judge, who is one member of a self-selected group too likely to have been made cynical and cross by over-exposure to bad people and bad occurrences.

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

    • If you want ideas about what to read next, sign up to our free email newsletter, and get book reviews, archive mate… ,
    • 'The heroic male nude could not, I think, be used today to signify civic pride and glory', as Michelangelo’s 'David… ,
    • 'Munch’s later works show us a man liberated from the torments that gave rise to some of the best-known early works… ,
    • 'We read from left to right and from start to finish. Or do we?' Stuart Hannabus considers the merits of reading i… ,
    • Domestic scandal, sexual abuse and serial killers are on the menu in April's crime round-up. revie… ,
    • What did Samuel Johnson, Joshua Reynolds, James Boswell and Edmund Burke all have in common? Clare Bucknell reveal… ,
    • 'Behind Berlusconi’s greasepaint and his rictus grin, the performance of Toni Servillo suggests the affectless holl… ,