INTERVIEWS, REVIEWS & RELATED ARTICLES
The Independent JANUARY 28, 2006 - by Brian Eno
LETTERS: EVOLUTIONARY THEORY BECOMES LITERATURE
Sir: Howard Jacobson [January 21] seems to have become disproportionately upset over Richard Dawkins' critique of religion, but the venom of his attack seems to support exactly the position that Dawkins has taken: that religion sometimes brings out the worst in people.
Does Jacobson know anything at all about Dawkins the scientist? Has he ever actually read any of his books? If he had, it's hard for me to understand how he could accuse him of lacking imagination, wit, sympathy, vocabulary and all those other nice literary virtues.
I think there are very few scientists who'd question the importance of Dawkins' contribution to evolution theory and very few readers who would argue with the elegance ad directness of his writing and his ability to engage a lay audience at the forefront of scientific debate. That he now turns his intellect towards the very important and topical subject of religion is something to be welcomed, not derided - especially when "the leader of the free world" qualifies his increasingly absurd behaviour by claiming that God talks directly to him.
Perhaps I'm also "sad", but I too find the insights of evolution theory far more surprising and beautiful - and useful - than anything that religion has offered me.