New Book by Italian Geneticist Criticizes Darwin’’s Theory of Evolution

SEATTLE –Italian geneticist Giuseppe Sermonti maps what he depicts as a growing scientific case against neo-Darwinism in his new book,
Why is a Fly Not a Horse?
(Discovery Institute Press, July 2005). Sermonti challenges the myth that all critics of Darwinism are American religious fundamentalists and argues that since genetics does not explain even the present forms of life, genetic mutations cannot alone explain their origin.

The book extends beyond genetics, drawing on a variety of disciplines. “Sermonti describes biology which contradicts Darwinian expectations: leaf insects appearing in the fossil record before leaves, insects before plants, and biological forms that reflect abstract mathematical expressions,” said biochemist Michael Behe, author of Darwin’s Black Box. “He shows that there are more things in life than are dreamt of in Darwinian philosophy.”

Why is a Fly Not a Horse? is the first in a new series of science books from Discovery Institute Press. The Italian version of the book has already generated controversy on the Internet, inviting attacks from pro-Darwin sites in anticipation of its release in English.

Working against this current, Dr. Leendert Van Der Hammen, a member with Sermonti of the Osaka Group for the Study of Dynamic Structures, defended Sermonti’s book. He said that by tying together insights from disciplines often studied in isolation—genetics, molecular biology, morphogenetics, physics, chemistry and mathematics—Sermonti was able to uncover new weaknesses in the modern theory of evolution.

For Discovery Institute Senior Fellow Jonathan Witt, a former English professor, one of the most remarkable things about the book was its style: “Anyone who believed in reincarnation would say Sermonti was a poet in a former life. His descriptions are phenomenal.”

Sermonti is a retired Professor of Genetics at the University of Perugia. He discovered genetic recombination in antibiotic-producing Penicillium and Streptomyces and was Vice President at XIV International Congress of Genetics (Moscow, 1980). He is Chief Editor of Rivista di Biologia, one of the world’s oldest biology journals still in publication.

Why is a Fly Not a Horse? is available at bookstores and online from