THE EDGE OF EVOLUTION: The Search for the Limits of Darwinism (Free Press; Due out June 5, 2007; $28.00) is CSC Senior Fellow Michael Behe’s long-awaited follow up to his 1996 bestseller Darwin’s Black Box, the book that helped launch the intelligent design movement.
Controversial and timely, The Edge of Evolution presents landmark evidence that devastatingly disproves random mutation as a major part of evolution and shows that life developed non-randomly from cells to animals.
Through a combination of experimental evidence, genome research, and mathematical law, Behe analyzes three key case studies of the tens of thousands of generations of malaria, E. coli, and the HIV virus, and the human genomic response to those invaders. We now know exactly what mutations have occurred in the struggle between these parasites and their human hosts. We know their rate of occurrence. We know all possible types of mutations, and their natural rate of occurrence. Armed with all this, it is a simple matter of extrapolation to determine the limits of Darwinian randomness in the entire tree of life on earth.
With The Edge of Evolution, intelligent design has the framework for a comprehensive scientific statement that draws the line between random and non-random mutation in nature; defines the principles by which Darwinian evolution can be distinguished from design; fits design theory together with the findings of cosmology, chemistry, and physics into an overarching theory of the universe; and lays out a research program, with predictions, to counter the failed predictions of Darwin’s enthusiasts.
Until the past decade and the genomics revolution, Darwin’s theory rested on indirect evidence and reasonable speculation. Now, however, we have begun to scratch the surface of direct evidence, of which this book offers the best possible treatment. Though many critics won’t want to admit it, The Edge of Evolution is very balanced, careful, and devastating. A tremendously important book.
Dr. Philip Skell, Evan Pugh Professor of Chemistry, Emeritus, at Pennsylvania State University, and member of the National Academy of Sciences