Re: Essay in Christian Century

From: Keith B Miller (
Date: Wed Jan 16 2002 - 10:55:42 EST

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    Ted wrote:

    >I want to call attention to the splendid essay by Stephen Pope in Christian
    >Century, 2-9 January, responding to the awful review that Frederick Crews
    >(Berkeley) wrote of several religion/science books in the NY Times Review of
    >Books. Readers may recall that I disagreed with praise for Crews on this
    >listserve several weeks ago, now there is a lucid and vivid essay that
    >states many of my concerns--and more--much better than I did at the time. I
    >recommend this essay strongly.

    I too found Pope's essay very well-written, and urge others to read it. It
    does a great job of pointedly addressing the central issues.

    My only point of disagreement is that I do not think that there was any
    deliberate attempt on the part of the PBS producers to ignore, or
    misrepresent, the fruitful science/faith dialogue. I don't see any
    conspiracy of the intellectual elite here. The various segments were done
    by different production crews operating independently. The director of the
    "What about God?" episode was an alumnus of Wheaton College (which is why
    the episode focussed on that institution). I think that the PBS program
    simply reflected extremely well-ingrained popular misperceptions that
    permeate our culture. I think that people forget that this was a popular
    series, produced not only to educate but also to entertain and hold
    viewers' interests. It did this by focussing on individual personal
    stories, rather than presenting a systematic study. Of course, this is not
    to deny that PBS missed a great opportunity to bring the public a better
    understanding of the nature and relationship of science and theology. But,
    the evangelical church has also failed miserably in this endeaver.

    However, the writing by Frederick Crews, and other similar apologists of
    atheistic naturalism, has no such defense. Theirs is a case of deliberate
    misrepresentation and willful ignorance.


    Keith B. Miller
    Department of Geology
    Kansas State University
    Manhattan, KS 66506

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