Sunday, October 10, 2004

The Wright-Dennett Affair

Robert Wright is well-known as a political commentator for magazines like The New Republic and Slate. He has also written two books on evolutionary biology, The Moral Animal and Nonzero. The former dealt with evolutionary psychology. The latter was a defense, contra Stephen Jay Gould, of the idea of progress in evolution.

Anyone interested in evolutionary biology will know who Daniel Dennett is. He is the author of Darwin's Dangerous Idea among many other important books. He is also quite open about his atheism. He is typically mentioned in the same breath as Richard Dawkins by creationists looking for an evolutionist bogeyman to flog.

Wright maintains this website where you can find numerous interviews with various scholars addressing The Big Questions of human existence. Recently, Wright interviewed Daniel Dennett. That interview can be viewed by following the link above.

After conducting the interview Wright posted this article describing a supposed concession made by Dennett during the interview, and that is where our story begins.


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