Genes, Genesis, and God: Values and their Origins in Natural and Human History

3.78 avg rating
( 9 ratings by Goodreads )
 
9780521646741: Genes, Genesis, and God: Values and their Origins in Natural and Human History

Can the phenomena of religion and ethics be reduced to the phenomena of biology? Holmes Rolston says no, and in this sweeping account of the subject, written with considerable verve and clarity, he challenges the sociobiological orthodoxy that would naturalize science, ethics, and religion. The book is thoroughly up to date on current biological thought and is written by one of the most well-respected figures in the philosophy of biology and religion. It is likely to provoke considerable controversy among a wide range of readers in such fields as philosophy, religious studies, and biology, as well as being suitable for courses on science and religion.

"synopsis" may belong to another edition of this title.

Review:

If you're going to draw together genetics, science in general, ethics, and religion, by definition it probably won't be a simple read. However,Genes, Genesis and God is so well written that the intelligent lay person can grasp the author's arguments.

Holmes Rolston III is a professor of philosophy at Colorado State University. This book is based on his Gifford Lectures at the University of Edinburgh in 1997. What role, he asks, do genes play in the evolution of mankind? For Rolston, man is not seen just as a superior animal but as both a creator and creature of culture; this is what distinguishes us from the beasts.

He carefully examines recent evolutionary theories, including Richard Dawkins's "selfish gene" concept, which he finds not only misnamed but misleading.

The first couple of chapters of the book look at genes, what they are and how they work, and what they do and don't do. From this topic he moves on to the genesis of human culture, to the "evolution" of scientific ideas, to ethics, and finally to religion. Religion, he concludes in his final, deeply thoughtful, and clearly argued chapter, which will annoy atheist evolution advocates and fundamentalist creationists alike, does have a survival value for humankind and is not in any way incompatible with genetics or evolutionary theory.

This book is a valuable contribution to the philosophy of science. A single criticism would be that there is no reference to the recent work of Jack Cohen and Ian Stewart, who pursue a very similar path of inquiry into the "evolution of the curious mind" in their Figments of Reality. --David V Barrett, Amazon.co.uk

Review:

"This is a scholarly work by one of the foremost philosophers of biology and religion today....Rolston knows his genetics, and is masterful in presenting complex biological concepts in a highly readable and non-threatening way. It is certain to provoke vigorous discussions between philosophers, theologians and scientists. It's something we need more of." The Presbyterian Outlook

"...to read the lectures is to travel along important paths of enquiry in the company of a mind that is humane and perceptive, careful for truth, and valiant for value." John Polkinghorne--Queens' College, Cambridge

"...to read the lectures is to travel along important paths of enquiry in the company of a mind that is humane and, careful for the truth, and valient for value." John Polkinghorne, Queens College, Cambridge

"Genes, Genesis, and God may be of some value to those who are looking fora collection of perspectives dealing with the origin of complexity and morality...this book could provide something along the lines of a feeling of wonder to those who do not question in any way the evolution paradigm." Seminary Studies 38

"[Holmes Rolston, III] has written a careful but bold challenge to the claims of sociobiologists that human values can be deduced only from nature. Rolston's challenging and provocative, but modest, way of interpreting the story of evolution will stimulate other philosophers to carefully examine recent scientific discoveries about nature and carry further dialogue he has begun." Social Theory and Practice

"I recommend that you read Genes, Genesis, and God and make the judgment of its overall worth for yourself. Whatever your conclusion, you will not think your time has been wasted. For myself, when next I meet Holmes Rolston, I will buy the first round of beer!" Reports

"Rolston's lectures are a magnificent tour de force to solve one of the most important problems in environmental ethics for the twenty-first century: How can we convince the inhabitants of the house that we all live in and on that it ought to be respected, protected, and preserved?" Ethics

"In his published lectures, titled Genes, Genesis, and God and organized under six chapters, Rolston skillfully reworks his stated positions on natural history, objective natural value, the nature-culture distinction, human nature, and the divine-world relationship. He aims to provide an 'integrated account' of science, ethics, end religion, based on is conviction that a 'comprehensive worldview' shapes an environmental ethic." Environmental Ethics

"About this title" may belong to another edition of this title.

Top Search Results from the AbeBooks Marketplace

1.

Holmes Rolston III
Published by U.S.A.: Cambridge University Press (1999)
ISBN 10: 052164674X ISBN 13: 9780521646741
New Soft cover First Edition Quantity Available: 1
Seller:
Mima Mia Books
(Boston, MA, U.S.A.)
Rating
[?]

Book Description U.S.A.: Cambridge University Press, 1999. Soft cover. Book Condition: New. 1st Edition. 8565 Language: eng Language: eng Language: eng Language: eng Language: eng Language: eng. Bookseller Inventory # B-66B

More Information About This Seller | Ask Bookseller a Question

Buy New
US$ 15.00
Convert Currency

Add to Basket

Shipping: US$ 4.00
Within U.S.A.
Destination, Rates & Speeds

2.

Holmes Rolston III
Published by Cambridge University Press (1999)
ISBN 10: 052164674X ISBN 13: 9780521646741
New Paperback First Edition Quantity Available: 1
Seller:
Irish Booksellers
(Rumford, ME, U.S.A.)
Rating
[?]

Book Description Cambridge University Press, 1999. Paperback. Book Condition: New. book. Bookseller Inventory # M052164674X

More Information About This Seller | Ask Bookseller a Question

Buy New
US$ 34.79
Convert Currency

Add to Basket

Shipping: FREE
Within U.S.A.
Destination, Rates & Speeds

3.

Rolston, Holmes, III
Published by Cambridge University Press 2006-03 (2006)
ISBN 10: 052164674X ISBN 13: 9780521646741
New Quantity Available: 5
Print on Demand
Seller:
Chiron Media
(Wallingford, United Kingdom)
Rating
[?]

Book Description Cambridge University Press 2006-03, 2006. Book Condition: New. This item is printed on demand. Brand new book, sourced directly from publisher. Dispatch time is 24-48 hours from our warehouse. Book will be sent in robust, secure packaging to ensure it reaches you securely. Bookseller Inventory # NU-LSI-06949052

More Information About This Seller | Ask Bookseller a Question

Buy New
US$ 38.08
Convert Currency

Add to Basket

Shipping: US$ 3.96
From United Kingdom to U.S.A.
Destination, Rates & Speeds

4.

ROLSTON HOLMES III
Published by Cambridge University Press March 1999 (1999)
ISBN 10: 052164674X ISBN 13: 9780521646741
New Paper Back Quantity Available: 1
Seller:
Eighth Day Books, LLC
(Wichita, KS, U.S.A.)
Rating
[?]

Book Description Cambridge University Press March 1999, 1999. Paper Back. Book Condition: New. These Gifford Lectures for 1997 comprise a philosophical enquiry into the soundness of reigning evolutionary theories (e.g. those of Richard Dawkins, E.O. Wilson, David Dennett, most prominently) concerning the origin of ethics and morality. These theories of course rule out any sort of transcendent source for these pervasive structures of human life, attributing all religion and altruism to survival mechanisms devised By our ''selfish genes.'' Or as Dawkins astoundingly announces, concerning the ''oughts'' of how we should live, ''all attempts to answer that question before 1859 [the publication of Darwin's Origin of Species] are worthless and that we will be better off if we ignore them completely. There is such a thing as being just plain wrong, and that is what, before 1859, all answers to those questions were.'' Rolston uses one such pre-1859 answer, the parable of the Good Samaritan, as a paradigm for a rebuttal. This spacious book incorporates the resulting argument for pure altruism into a theory of natural and cultural evolution that sees profound ''genius'' at work, resulting in a whole that is greater than the sum of its constituents, a world that is value-laden rather than value-free. Bookseller Inventory # 20080121132747

More Information About This Seller | Ask Bookseller a Question

Buy New
US$ 39.99
Convert Currency

Add to Basket

Shipping: US$ 3.99
Within U.S.A.
Destination, Rates & Speeds

5.

Holmes Rolston
Published by CAMBRIDGE UNIVERSITY PRESS, United Kingdom (2006)
ISBN 10: 052164674X ISBN 13: 9780521646741
New Paperback Quantity Available: 10
Print on Demand
Seller:
The Book Depository
(London, United Kingdom)
Rating
[?]

Book Description CAMBRIDGE UNIVERSITY PRESS, United Kingdom, 2006. Paperback. Book Condition: New. Language: English . Brand New Book ***** Print on Demand *****.Holmes Rolston challenges the sociobiological orthodoxy that would naturalize science, ethics, and religion. The book argues that genetic processes are not blind, selfish, and contingent, and that nature is therefore not value-free. The author examines the emergence of complex biodiversity through evolutionary history. Especially remarkable in this narrative is the genesis of human beings with their capacities for science, ethics, and religion. A major conceptual task of the book is to relate cultural genesis to natural genesis. There is also a general account of how values are created and transmitted in both natural and human cultural history. The book is written by one of the most well-respected figures in the philosophy of biology and religion. Bookseller Inventory # AAV9780521646741

More Information About This Seller | Ask Bookseller a Question

Buy New
US$ 46.49
Convert Currency

Add to Basket

Shipping: FREE
From United Kingdom to U.S.A.
Destination, Rates & Speeds

6.

Holmes Rolston
Published by CAMBRIDGE UNIVERSITY PRESS, United Kingdom (2006)
ISBN 10: 052164674X ISBN 13: 9780521646741
New Paperback Quantity Available: 10
Print on Demand
Seller:
The Book Depository US
(London, United Kingdom)
Rating
[?]

Book Description CAMBRIDGE UNIVERSITY PRESS, United Kingdom, 2006. Paperback. Book Condition: New. Language: English . Brand New Book ***** Print on Demand *****. Holmes Rolston challenges the sociobiological orthodoxy that would naturalize science, ethics, and religion. The book argues that genetic processes are not blind, selfish, and contingent, and that nature is therefore not value-free. The author examines the emergence of complex biodiversity through evolutionary history. Especially remarkable in this narrative is the genesis of human beings with their capacities for science, ethics, and religion. A major conceptual task of the book is to relate cultural genesis to natural genesis. There is also a general account of how values are created and transmitted in both natural and human cultural history. The book is written by one of the most well-respected figures in the philosophy of biology and religion. Bookseller Inventory # AAV9780521646741

More Information About This Seller | Ask Bookseller a Question

Buy New
US$ 46.54
Convert Currency

Add to Basket

Shipping: FREE
From United Kingdom to U.S.A.
Destination, Rates & Speeds

7.

Holmes Rolston III
Published by Cambridge University Press (2017)
ISBN 10: 052164674X ISBN 13: 9780521646741
New Paperback Quantity Available: 2
Print on Demand
Seller:
Murray Media
(North Miami Beach, FL, U.S.A.)
Rating
[?]

Book Description Cambridge University Press, 2017. Paperback. Book Condition: New. Never used! This item is printed on demand. Bookseller Inventory # P11052164674X

More Information About This Seller | Ask Bookseller a Question

Buy New
US$ 47.00
Convert Currency

Add to Basket

Shipping: US$ 1.99
Within U.S.A.
Destination, Rates & Speeds

8.

Rolston, Holmes, III
Published by Cambridge University Press (2016)
ISBN 10: 052164674X ISBN 13: 9780521646741
New Paperback Quantity Available: 1
Print on Demand
Seller:
Ria Christie Collections
(Uxbridge, United Kingdom)
Rating
[?]

Book Description Cambridge University Press, 2016. Paperback. Book Condition: New. PRINT ON DEMAND Book; New; Publication Year 2016; Not Signed; Fast Shipping from the UK. No. book. Bookseller Inventory # ria9780521646741_lsuk

More Information About This Seller | Ask Bookseller a Question

Buy New
US$ 47.18
Convert Currency

Add to Basket

Shipping: US$ 5.13
From United Kingdom to U.S.A.
Destination, Rates & Speeds

9.

Rolston, Holmes
Published by Cambridge University Press (1999)
ISBN 10: 052164674X ISBN 13: 9780521646741
New Quantity Available: > 20
Print on Demand
Seller:
Books2Anywhere
(Fairford, GLOS, United Kingdom)
Rating
[?]

Book Description Cambridge University Press, 1999. PAP. Book Condition: New. New Book. Delivered from our UK warehouse in 3 to 5 business days. THIS BOOK IS PRINTED ON DEMAND. Established seller since 2000. Bookseller Inventory # LQ-9780521646741

More Information About This Seller | Ask Bookseller a Question

Buy New
US$ 40.53
Convert Currency

Add to Basket

Shipping: US$ 11.94
From United Kingdom to U.S.A.
Destination, Rates & Speeds

10.

Holmes Rolston III
Published by Cambridge University Press (1999)
ISBN 10: 052164674X ISBN 13: 9780521646741
New Paperback Quantity Available: 1
Seller:
Ergodebooks
(RICHMOND, TX, U.S.A.)
Rating
[?]

Book Description Cambridge University Press, 1999. Paperback. Book Condition: New. 1. Bookseller Inventory # DADAX052164674X

More Information About This Seller | Ask Bookseller a Question

Buy New
US$ 48.98
Convert Currency

Add to Basket

Shipping: US$ 3.99
Within U.S.A.
Destination, Rates & Speeds

There are more copies of this book

View all search results for this book