so improbable that, to any reasonable
mind, such a naturalistic explanation
must be seen to be utterly, utterly
1. Cited by Gosh, P., Neural Suitcase Tells the Tales
of Many Minds, Partridge Publishing, India,
ch. 69, 2014.
2. Wieland, C., Secular scientists blast the big bang:
what now for naïve apologetics? Creation 27( 2):
23–25, 2005; creation.com/bigbangblast.
3. Tegmark, M., Is ‘the theory of everything’
merely the ultimate ensemble theory? Annals of
Physics 270: 1–51, 1998; arxiv.org/pdf/
4. Davies, P.C.W., The Accidental Universe,
Cambridge University Press, UK, p. 70, 1982.
5. Barnes, L.A., The Fine-Tuning of the Universe for
Intelligent Life, Publications of the Astronomical
Society of Australia 29:529–564, 2012; www.
6. Tegmark, ref. 3, fig. 5, p. 16.
7. Barnes, ref. 5, fig. 6, p. 549.
8. Sarfati, J., Should creationists accept quantum
mechanics? J. Creation 26( 1): 116–123, 2012;
9. Hartnett, J.G., Dark energy and the elusive
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10. Weinberg, S., Facing Up: Science and its
cultural adversaries, Harvard University Press,
Cambridge, MA, pp. 80–81, 2001.
In 2002, Dr Jonathan Wells wrote Icons of Evolution, 1 in which he
identified common themes in college
textbooks that are used to illustrate
evolution, even though they are
dubious or even discredited. In this
forceful sequel, he re-examines and
expands on this form of non-accidental
Wells refutes criticisms of his
original work, and shows that, far
from being corrected, these icons
not only persist, but have also been
joined by newer icons. That is why
we are dealing with zombie science—
wherefrom the title of this book. Wells
also shows that evolution, as currently
taught, has a stifling effect not only on
religion, but also on science itself.
Because there are so many worthwhile topics raised by Wells, it is a bit
frustrating not being able to discuss all
of them. My review is largely limited
to the better-known icons.
Evolutionistic ideology … not
One common evolutionistic
exculpation for the icons, voiced by
leading evolutionists (e.g. Coyne,
Pigliucci, Padian, and Gishlick),
is that they are merely the kind of
trivial errors that inevitably occur in
any publication. They most certainly
are not. Wells gives the example of a
physical science textbook in which
a caption and photo had accidently
been mismatched (pp. 49–50). It
was promptly corrected in the next
edition. Not so with the icons, which,
as demonstrated repeatedly by Wells,
continue to reappear in textbooks year
after year after year.
In fact, Wells could have made
his case, for the hollowness of the
exculpatory ‘innocent errors’ arguments, even stronger. The high cost
of college science textbooks is often
explained (away) by the claim that
such textbooks must frequently be
replaced in order to ensure that they
are scrupulously up-to-date and
accurate. If that is so, then that is all
the more reason that the icons should
have disappeared long ago. Instead,
editors are in no hurry to correct errors
or discredited information in science
Icons of evolution revisited—
all the old and new icons
Zombie Science: More icons
Discovery Institute Press, Seattle, WA, 2017