Albuquerque hosts Charles Darwin at Museum this Sunday

| 37 Comments

foxellis.jpg

If you find yourself in the Albuquerque NM area this Sunday, consider heading down to the New Mexico Museum of Natural History and Science to meet Charles Darwin.

Not the real Darwin of course, but entertainer/storyteller Brian “Fox” Ellis.

Here are the details.

Charles Darwin and the Voyage of the Beagle with Storyteller Brian “Fox” Ellis Sunday, May 16th 2 p.m. NM Museum of Natural History & Science

After spending five years circumnavigating the globe aboard H.M.S. Beagle, Charles Darwin has spent the past twenty years as a recluse in the study of his home near London, researching and writing his great work, On the Origin of Species by Natural Selection. With the recent publication of this controversial book, Charles Darwin is making a rare public appearance to tell his side of the story, share the adventures from his monumental trip and outline the intricacies of his theory of evolution!

Fox Ellis is a storyteller, author, and educator. He has been touring as a performer and educator since 1980. He is a dynamic teller with a warm and entertaining manner. Fox is the author of nine books including, “The WEB at Dragonfly Pond” and nine CDs. He also writes for more than a dozen magazines. Ellis presented “Audubon” last fall at the Museum, and the audience asked for more–so here he is, back by popular demand!

Free, open to the Public! 2 PM at the Museum.

I hope to see you there! Hey, it’s FREE!

37 Comments

How do you get the nickname “Fox”? I so want that. I bet he named himself that. Not cool, Foxy.

Will this darwin be bringing up to the audience about his idea that women are biologically intellectually inferior to men? r is just about ideas that are still accepted by some.?

Well, let’s see. A 6.55, I think. 5 for the outright lie, and 3 for the totally unintelligible second sentence, but discounted 1.5 by the fact that the first, while irrational, senseless, prolix and ungrammatical, can actually be parsed for meaning.

Must do better, Byers.

I saw Ellis perhaps a year and a half ago. The presentation is excellent, with some teaching interactivity. Highly recommended.

I will be there tomorrow unless I get hit by a bus or something of the sort. It’s odd, but I’ve been to the museum many times over the past few years and I haven’t really had a chance to go wonder around and look at the exhibits.

Robert Byers -

Your comment is coherent enough that I can respond to it.

his idea that women are biologically intellectually inferior to men?

1. Women were treated as inferiors in Victorian society; Darwin was not at all misogynistic or sexist by the standards of his time. However, life evolves; this would be true even if Darwin actually had been a raving male chauvinist.

2. Of course the event will mainly be about his ideas that are still accepted.

3. What is the view of your religion with respect to the appropriate role of women in society?

Creationists claim to “take the Bible literally”; however, the Bible is full of condemnations of hypocrisy, and they don’t take those literally at all.

harold said:

1. Women were treated as inferiors in Victorian society; Darwin was not at all misogynistic or sexist by the standards of his time. However, life evolves; this would be true even if Darwin actually had been a raving male chauvinist.

2. Of course the event will mainly be about his ideas that are still accepted.

By our standards today, Darwin was a misogynist and a racist. Almost all (white) males of Darwin’s time were. Yes, you can find statements by him that were misogynistic and racist. His view of race was quite similar to his contemporary Abraham Lincoln (in fact, he was a bit more consistent than Lincoln was in his opposition to slavery).

Do we think of Lincoln as a major proponent of racism? No, because of the role he played in ending slavery, and because so many of his contemporaries were much worse.

It is worth keeping this in perspective and not engaging in foolish denials that Lincoln, or Darwin, ever made a racist or misogynistic statement. They were men of their time.

Point 2) above is important too. To some extent concentrating on the (large) part of Darwin’s thinking that has not only survived, but is the foundation of modern biology, may lead to a nonhistorical hero-worship. I wish there were an easy way to get the fuller picture across in a re-enactment like Brian Ellis’s.

The outright lie of Byers, Joe, was that misogyny was Darwin’s idea. It wasn’t by any stretch his idea.

Dave Luckett said:

The outright lie of Byers, Joe, was that misogyny was Darwin’s idea. It wasn’t by any stretch his idea.

Of course not. Far be it from me to defend statements by Byers, but if he meant by “Darwin’s idea” simply “Darwin’s belief” then it was no lie. With Byers it is hard to tell what he is saying most of the time.

Joe Felsenstein -

We completely agree. I believe that the following statements are more or less logically equivalent, except that mine has one extra piece of information.

By our standards today, Darwin was a misogynist and a racist. Almost all (white) males of Darwin’s time were.

Women were treated as inferiors in Victorian society; Darwin was not at all misogynistic or sexist by the standards of his time. However, life evolves; this would be true even if Darwin actually had been a raving male chauvinist.

We both make the point that the overwhelming mainstream tendency of Victorian society was for women to be treated as social inferiors.

I happened to add the fact that Darwin did not stand out for being sexist by the standards of his time. However, please note that I also pointed out that this is irrelevant, and that I brought it up only to correct a false claim.

Off topic but of interest -

Lincoln may have implied himself to be more “racist” than he actually was in some circumstances. The reason for this is that Lincoln correctly emphasized a distinction between social biases - the regrettable, but perfectly legal tendency of people to like or dislike other people for superficial reasons - and actual denial of human rights to a group of people.

Lincoln was insightful here, as this type of illogical conflation arises every time a legally oppressed group of people begins to achieve their constitutionally guaranteed human rights. During the civil rights struggle, one hundred years after Lincoln’s first campaign for president, proponents of the segregation system used the same strategy; trying to conflate recognition of constitutionally mandated legal rights with superficial social interaction. It’s irrelevant “how you would feel if your daughter married a [member of given human-defined ethnic group]”, when the question is whether members of that ethnic group should be denied full human rights (a situation which sets the precedent for denying any arbitrarily defined group of people their human rights in the future). Even if you’re a bigot who feels terrible that his daughter married a member of the “wrong” ethnic group, logically, you should still support full recognition of the legal human rights of members of that group.

Lincoln’s occasional offensive (by modern standards) remarks may have reflected a strategy of keeping the discussion focused on the actual issue, and not letting an opponent derail it into an emotionally charged but irrelevant declaration of social biases.

I’d actually be prepared to defend Darwin on the charge of misogyny. Not on the charge of sexism, mind, of which he stands guilty, as did practically every man of his time (and many of ours), but he did not hate, fear or loathe women, and that’s what misogynists do.

Dave Luckett said:

I’d actually be prepared to defend Darwin on the charge of misogyny. Not on the charge of sexism, mind, of which he stands guilty, as did practically every man of his time (and many of ours), but he did not hate, fear or loathe women, and that’s what misogynists do.

I plead imprecise terminology, and stand corrected. Sexism, not misogyny.

I’m the one who introduced the word misogyny, but in the context of pointing out that, contrary to the assertion of Robert Byers, the description does not apply to Darwin, at least according to the historical record.

harold said:

Robert Byers -

Your comment is coherent enough that I can respond to it.

his idea that women are biologically intellectually inferior to men?

1. Women were treated as inferiors in Victorian society; Darwin was not at all misogynistic or sexist by the standards of his time. However, life evolves; this would be true even if Darwin actually had been a raving male chauvinist.

2. Of course the event will mainly be about his ideas that are still accepted.

3. What is the view of your religion with respect to the appropriate role of women in society?

Creationists claim to “take the Bible literally”; however, the Bible is full of condemnations of hypocrisy, and they don’t take those literally at all.

The “descent of man” has quite detailed discussion from Darwin on women. “Thus man has ultimately become superior to women” “…the present inequality in mental power …” or “…the averageof mental power in man must be above that of woman”. In fact Darwin said that if the “…law of equal transmission of characters…” was not operative then the intellectual biological differences between men/woman would be as high a contrast as between a full plumaged peacock and a peahen. It goes on like this. In fact the whole book rightly is not read today as it alone would discredit Darwinism.

No excuses. First Victorian society was to that date the highest level women ever had. Nothing wrong with it. The men were not bad to women. Thats modern accusations from prideful feminism. The people did not believe women were innately inferior to men. That was suggested by evolutionism.

Off thread but the bible gave full equality to woman in society except to recognize the reality of men over women. However its never taught there is to be a difference save within marriage in a minor way.

Darwins ideas on women are not from his society but firmly within the ideas of evolution. Completely based on the principals he uses for everything else he says. Read his book! Another point is why was he wrong?! The atomic reasoning here is the same as in his other stuff. The other stuff simply is about untestable past events.

Joe Felsenstein said:

harold said:

1. Women were treated as inferiors in Victorian society; Darwin was not at all misogynistic or sexist by the standards of his time. However, life evolves; this would be true even if Darwin actually had been a raving male chauvinist.

2. Of course the event will mainly be about his ideas that are still accepted.

By our standards today, Darwin was a misogynist and a racist. Almost all (white) males of Darwin’s time were. Yes, you can find statements by him that were misogynistic and racist. His view of race was quite similar to his contemporary Abraham Lincoln (in fact, he was a bit more consistent than Lincoln was in his opposition to slavery).

Do we think of Lincoln as a major proponent of racism? No, because of the role he played in ending slavery, and because so many of his contemporaries were much worse.

It is worth keeping this in perspective and not engaging in foolish denials that Lincoln, or Darwin, ever made a racist or misogynistic statement. They were men of their time.

Point 2) above is important too. To some extent concentrating on the (large) part of Darwin’s thinking that has not only survived, but is the foundation of modern biology, may lead to a nonhistorical hero-worship. I wish there were an easy way to get the fuller picture across in a re-enactment like Brian Ellis’s.

Off thread but I must defend white men and dArwin here. Hogwash. There was nothing wrong with ideas on sex/race if they are honestly reached and without malice. Nope. This is a usual attack against the old ones with no reference or accuracy as to character and motives of mankind. Its opinions change then its just opinions and not anything more. There is no such thing as racism/sexism/ etc. All there is in the world is ideas about other identities that are right or wrong from sincere opinion or from malice. By the way. You said white men are racist etc. Well that means your saying people of this identity are bad. By your standard that would make it a racist/sexist opinion.? Yet it isn’t. Its just a honest opinion of peoples character/motives based on group think. You can opine on people groups. Test. Replace white men with ,Jewish, black, Asian, Gay, women, and you would be accused of ‘ism. Would they be right? Just a thoughtful aside.

Around about a 6 for incoherence in the last. In the earlier one, I think this:

the bible gave full equality to woman in society except to recognize the reality of men over women

has to get a special commendation for self-contradiction summa cum laude. It’s not easy to demonstrate so hideous an affront to rational thought in a short sentence, and it should be duly recognised.

First, you are lying outright about evolutionism teaching that women are inferior to men. Religion did that and still does. Second, even if Darwin believed that, we do not have to adhere to everything he beleived. Maybe you are dumb enough to take a man-made book (the Bible) and assume it is infallible, but we don’t, not even the Origin of Species, nor do we regard Darwin as any sort of infallible prophet.

Robert Byers said:

The “descent of man” has quite detailed discussion from Darwin on women. “Thus man has ultimately become superior to women” “…the present inequality in mental power …” or “…the averageof mental power in man must be above that of woman”. In fact Darwin said that if the “…law of equal transmission of characters…” was not operative then the intellectual biological differences between men/woman would be as high a contrast as between a full plumaged peacock and a peahen. It goes on like this. In fact the whole book rightly is not read today as it alone would discredit Darwinism.

No excuses. First Victorian society was to that date the highest level women ever had. Nothing wrong with it. The men were not bad to women. Thats modern accusations from prideful feminism. The people did not believe women were innately inferior to men. That was suggested by evolutionism.

Off thread but the bible gave full equality to woman in society except to recognize the reality of men over women. However its never taught there is to be a difference save within marriage in a minor way.

Darwins ideas on women are not from his society but firmly within the ideas of evolution. Completely based on the principals he uses for everything else he says. Read his book! Another point is why was he wrong?! The atomic reasoning here is the same as in his other stuff. The other stuff simply is about untestable past events.

Robert Byers said:

The “descent of man” has quite detailed discussion from Darwin on women. “Thus man has ultimately become superior to women” “…the present inequality in mental power …” or “…the averageof mental power in man must be above that of woman”. In fact Darwin said that if the “…law of equal transmission of characters…” was not operative then the intellectual biological differences between men/woman would be as high a contrast as between a full plumaged peacock and a peahen. It goes on like this. In fact the whole book rightly is not read today as it alone would discredit Darwinism.

No excuses. First Victorian society was to that date the highest level women ever had. Nothing wrong with it. The men were not bad to women. Thats modern accusations from prideful feminism. The people did not believe women were innately inferior to men. That was suggested by evolutionism.

Off thread but the bible gave full equality to woman in society except to recognize the reality of men over women. However its never taught there is to be a difference save within marriage in a minor way.

Darwins ideas on women are not from his society but firmly within the ideas of evolution. Completely based on the principals he uses for everything else he says. Read his book! Another point is why was he wrong?! The atomic reasoning here is the same as in his other stuff. The other stuff simply is about untestable past events.

3.4

Tedious. But “atomic reasoning” is worth a small bonus.

Robert Byers said:

Off thread but I must defend white men and dArwin here. Hogwash. There was nothing wrong with ideas on sex/race if they are honestly reached and without malice. Nope. This is a usual attack against the old ones with no reference or accuracy as to character and motives of mankind. Its opinions change then its just opinions and not anything more. There is no such thing as racism/sexism/ etc. All there is in the world is ideas about other identities that are right or wrong from sincere opinion or from malice. By the way. You said white men are racist etc. Well that means your saying people of this identity are bad. By your standard that would make it a racist/sexist opinion.? Yet it isn’t. Its just a honest opinion of peoples character/motives based on group think. You can opine on people groups. Test. Replace white men with ,Jewish, black, Asian, Gay, women, and you would be accused of ‘ism. Would they be right? Just a thoughtful aside.

4.3

Scores are slipping dreadfully. Add more Bible blather: Ark, Babel, Flood, Adam’s rib. Give the people what they want!

Robert Byers -

I don’t understand why you evaded my question.

What is the view of your religion with respect to the appropriate role of women in society?

For the record…

1) I know you will never provide a straight answer.

2) Your true views on gender and race are obvious to me, although you try to conceal them.

harold–

Byers made himself absolutely clear above; “the bible gave full equality to woman in society except to recognize the reality of men over women.”

Well, maybe not ABSOLUTELY clear. In fact, “full equality” and “reality of men over women,” is sort of exactly contradictory. But it can’t really be a contradiction because it’s in the bible and all. So if it looks totally contradictory, it just means you LACK FAITH!!!

There, is that straight now? ;)

hoary puccoon said:

Byers made himself absolutely clear above; “the bible gave full equality to woman in society except to recognize the reality of men over women.”

…and of the ancient Hebrews over anyone who had anything they wanted (land, women, whatever), and of “whites” over “blacks” (“mark of Cain,” “curse of Ham,” or whatever other justification you need for slavery, bigotry, etc.).

What’s interesting to me about Byer’s blather is that I’ve NEVER heard or read a biologist or geologist (another group of scientists with a vested interest in evolution and long periods of time) say anything remotely like “evolution shows that men are superior to women”. On the other hand, I’ve repeatedly heard and read of people using the Bible to justify such an opinion. I’ve also repeatedly heard and read creationists invoke the meme that evolution also justifies that opinion.

The question is, why? It’s certainly possible that creationists misunderstand that aspect of evolution; after all, they misunderstand so much of evolution. But sometimes I wonder whether they just hope that at least this part of their belief system will be upheld by evolution as well. Or could it be that they simply hope that by blaming (what to most scientifically literate people is) an abhorrent idea on evolution, those people will reject evolution?

hoary puccoon said:

harold–

Byers made himself absolutely clear above; “the bible gave full equality to woman in society except to recognize the reality of men over women.”

Well, maybe not ABSOLUTELY clear. In fact, “full equality” and “reality of men over women,” is sort of exactly contradictory. But it can’t really be a contradiction because it’s in the bible and all. So if it looks totally contradictory, it just means you LACK FAITH!!!

There, is that straight now? ;)

What I mean is that full equality is given by the bible however in some of the old testament there is a recognition of the man over women reality in that world. so on minor points God allows things. Yet the bible is the greatest teaching ever on the great equality of the sexes regarding all important things. Salvation, life and limb, and how either sex can be seen as holy and righteous with no difference. The origin of modern womens status is from the closer attention to the bible and human relationships in the Anglo-American world because of a greater influence from the Puritan/Evangelical Protestant continous percentages. As it is today.

GvlGeologist, FCD said:

What’s interesting to me about Byer’s blather is that I’ve NEVER heard or read a biologist or geologist (another group of scientists with a vested interest in evolution and long periods of time) say anything remotely like “evolution shows that men are superior to women”. On the other hand, I’ve repeatedly heard and read of people using the Bible to justify such an opinion. I’ve also repeatedly heard and read creationists invoke the meme that evolution also justifies that opinion.

The question is, why? It’s certainly possible that creationists misunderstand that aspect of evolution; after all, they misunderstand so much of evolution. But sometimes I wonder whether they just hope that at least this part of their belief system will be upheld by evolution as well. Or could it be that they simply hope that by blaming (what to most scientifically literate people is) an abhorrent idea on evolution, those people will reject evolution?

Modern evolution doesn’t talk about womens evolutionary intellectual status either because they see no difference from men, or politics interfering, or a desire to hide a embarrassment. My point was about what Darwin taught and those following him. Another point was how it was firmly within and substained by his evolutionary ideas. Not a aside. the error here is the same error in all his ideas. In fact I always tell everyone to read the ‘Descent of man” to understand how wildly off base Darwin was in observations of nature and how laughable are his conclusions. The women thing is just a grabber. There’s more in the cookie jar.

I guess consistent logic and honesty are too much to ask from you, eh?

Robert Byers said:

What I mean is that full equality is given by the bible however in some of the old testament there is a recognition of the man over women reality in that world. so on minor points God allows things. Yet the bible is the greatest teaching ever on the great equality of the sexes regarding all important things. Salvation, life and limb, and how either sex can be seen as holy and righteous with no difference. The origin of modern womens status is from the closer attention to the bible and human relationships in the Anglo-American world because of a greater influence from the Puritan/Evangelical Protestant continous percentages. As it is today.

Robert Byers said:

Modern evolution doesn’t talk about womens evolutionary intellectual status either because they see no difference from men, or politics interfering, or a desire to hide a embarrassment. My point was about what Darwin taught and those following him. Another point was how it was firmly within and substained by his evolutionary ideas. Not a aside. the error here is the same error in all his ideas. In fact I always tell everyone to read the ‘Descent of man” to understand how wildly off base Darwin was in observations of nature and how laughable are his conclusions. The women thing is just a grabber. There’s more in the cookie jar.

You can always provide a list for us to look at and debate over. Or would that be too difficult for you? I do not admire lazy people who do not care enough to provide evidence to back up their claims, so get busy!

Robert Byers said:

What I mean is that full equality is given by the bible however in some of the old testament there is a recognition of the man over women reality in that world. so on minor points God allows things. Yet the bible is the greatest teaching ever on the great equality of the sexes regarding all important things. Salvation, life and limb, and how either sex can be seen as holy and righteous with no difference. The origin of modern womens status is from the closer attention to the bible and human relationships in the Anglo-American world because of a greater influence from the Puritan/Evangelical Protestant continous percentages. As it is today.

4.4

Read Leviticus lately?

Robert Byers said:

Modern evolution doesn’t talk about womens evolutionary intellectual status either because they see no difference from men, or politics interfering, or a desire to hide a embarrassment. My point was about what Darwin taught and those following him. Another point was how it was firmly within and substained by his evolutionary ideas. Not a aside. the error here is the same error in all his ideas. In fact I always tell everyone to read the ‘Descent of man” to understand how wildly off base Darwin was in observations of nature and how laughable are his conclusions. The women thing is just a grabber. There’s more in the cookie jar.

4.7

Pedestrian–but “substained” has a touch of inspired Freudian slip.

I cannot let this one slide– Byers says, “The origin of modern womens status is from the closer attention to the bible.…”

Excuse me, but being of a certain age, and not being, as another poster recently called me, a ‘sir’ I know a great deal about the “origin of modern womens [sic] status,” and I can tell you it did not come from “closer attention to the bible.”

I was in South Carolina when we were trying to get the Equal Rights Amendment ratified, and in the thick of the struggle. I am proud to say, I was personally denounced from the podium of the South Carolina state senate. And I know for an absolute fact that the biblical literalists were fighting us tooth and nail, with the kind of vicious distortions they are now using against gays. (Yes, we were going to “destroy the American family”, too.)

The improvement in modern women’s status came because the Supreme Court finally woke up and realized the 14th amendment already guaranteed us equal protection under the law. The bible thumpers did nothing to help. They did everything they could to block the ERA, and they would have blocked the new interpretation of the 14th amendment if they could have.

Sorry, everyone, for this flame. Pretty much until now, I’ve found Byers amusing. But the hypocrisy of holding up the very people who attempted (not very successfully, it’s true) to humiliate me in public as my supposed benefactors is simply beneath contempt.

(Byers, I will not respond to anything you write further on this topic. You may have the last word. I already know it will be another lie.)

1.666

“Let your women keep silence in the church, for it is not permitted for thm to speak.”

nuf said.

P.S. Sorry about that Hoary.

DS–

No problem. My husband is not under the slightest confusion, which is all that matters on that topic. :)

This is why I comment on Byers, but never (as far as I can remember) respond to him.

hoary puccoon said: (Byers, I will not respond to anything you write further on this topic. You may have the last word. I already know it will be another lie.)

hoary puccoon said:

I cannot let this one slide– Byers says, “The origin of modern womens status is from the closer attention to the bible.…”

Excuse me, but being of a certain age, and not being, as another poster recently called me, a ‘sir’ I know a great deal about the “origin of modern womens [sic] status,” and I can tell you it did not come from “closer attention to the bible.”

I was in South Carolina when we were trying to get the Equal Rights Amendment ratified, and in the thick of the struggle. I am proud to say, I was personally denounced from the podium of the South Carolina state senate. And I know for an absolute fact that the biblical literalists were fighting us tooth and nail, with the kind of vicious distortions they are now using against gays. (Yes, we were going to “destroy the American family”, too.)

The improvement in modern women’s status came because the Supreme Court finally woke up and realized the 14th amendment already guaranteed us equal protection under the law. The bible thumpers did nothing to help. They did everything they could to block the ERA, and they would have blocked the new interpretation of the 14th amendment if they could have.

Sorry, everyone, for this flame. Pretty much until now, I’ve found Byers amusing. But the hypocrisy of holding up the very people who attempted (not very successfully, it’s true) to humiliate me in public as my supposed benefactors is simply beneath contempt.

(Byers, I will not respond to anything you write further on this topic. You may have the last word. I already know it will be another lie.)

The modern womens gains is not from the 1970’s. its from the last two hundred years. Thats modern. In fact it is from the influence of Christianity that shaped the modern world that allowed a unique chance for females to be strive for historic male status and stuff. Very recent things are minor additions in minor areas whether good or bad. I understand the ERA was a bad thing and rejected by the American people. There should be no problem with rights from common citzenship. Including the right of the people to not agree with full priveloges to all. I t should be up to the people save on basic rights. You say you were denounced but opponents to your ideas also would be denounced. Being denounced don’t make you right. Anyways this is a aside to a aside to the very real threat that evolution thumpers in the 1800’s could of made it vey hard for women to advance if they had had influence. The bible is the origin of all humanity being treated in the Anglo-American civilization as equal in basic or more rights and priveledges. It was not that great in the old days before Queen Victoria. Anywhere. This is off thread and so I understand i have the last and best word.

Getting up there, Byers. A 7 for another piece of self-contradicting logical mayhem. How do you do it?

Have a nice day, everyone.

Robert Byers said: …This is off thread and so I understand i have the last and best word.

Once again, you are just making stuff up.

You do not got the “last and best word,” because I claim that right.

As for how the Bible treats women, the Oracle of Google has the answer. Simply go to Google.com, and type in the two words

Bible women

and let Google suggest a number of continuations of the search term. 2nd is “inferior”, 4th is “subservient”, 8th is “submit to men”, and no hint of “equality” or “equal rights” or any of that nonsense!

RB, you can huff and puff all you want, but species are related by descent.

And that’s true no matter what Darwin or the Bible say about women.

Anyway, Fox Ellis put on a great show, it was well attended, and life goes on.

Thanks for playing.

Did I mention that Byers isn’t getting the last word?

Cheers, Dave

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This page contains a single entry by Dave Thomas published on May 14, 2010 4:44 PM.

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