Publication date: September 24, 2020
Oxford University Press
ISBN: 9780197516607 (hardcover)
Who are America’s creationists? What do they want? Do they truly believe Jesus rode around on dinosaurs, as sometimes depicted? Creationism USA reveals how common misconceptions about creationism have led Americans into a century of unnecessary culture-war histrionics about evolution education and creationism. Adam Laats argues that Americans do not have deep, fundamental disagreements about evolution – not about the actual science behind it and not in ways that truly matter to public policy. Laats asserts that Americans do, however, have significant disagreements about creationism. By describing the history of creationism and its many variations, Laats demonstrates that the real conflict about evolution is not between creationists and evolution. The true landscape of American creationism is far more complicated than headlines suggest.
Creationism USA digs beyond those headlines to prove two fundamental facts about American creationism. First, almost all Americans can be classified as creationists of one type or another. Second, nearly all Americans (including self-identified creationists) want their children to learn mainstream evolutionary science. Taken together, these truths about American creationism point to a large and productive middle ground, a widely shared public vision of the proper relationship between schools, science, and religion. Creationism USA both explains the current state of America’s battles over creationism and offers a nuanced yet straight-forward prescription to solve them.
Table of Contents:
Introduction: We Don’t Disagree about Evolution
Chapter 1: After their Kinds
Chapter 2: The Evolution of Radical Creationism
Chapter 3: Evolution and All That
Chapter 4: What Not to Know and How Not to Know It
Chapter 5: Ignorance and Evolution
Chapter 6: I Saw the Light
Chapter 7: Evolution USA
Conclusion: Trust Falls
Lengthy description by the author.