Tuesday, April 10, 2007

Dani's New & Hot (Week 2)

Flock of Dodos: The Evolution-Intelligent Design Circus (2006)

"Flock of Dodos is the first feature documentary (84 mins.) to present both sides of the Intelligent Design/Evolution clash that appeared on the covers of Time and Newsweek in 2005. Filmmaker and former Evolutionary Ecologist Dr. Randy Olson tries to make sense of the issue by visiting his home state of Kansas. At first it seems the problem lies with intelligent design -- a movement labeled recently as "breathtaking inanity" by a federal judge -- but when a group of evolutionists convene for a night of poker and discussion they end up sounding themselves like...a flock of dodos." - Official Website

Go to the official website (http://www.flockofdodos.com/) and there's a funny trailer. I think it would be interesting to watch this movie. Reviews say that it presents a well-balanced argument for both sides of the debate even though the filmmaker is an evolutionist.

The "Flock of Dodos" title serves as a metaphor. Originally, when Portuguese sailors arrived at the island of Mauritius, they found that the dodo bird was a great prey because it was not afraid of humans and could not fly. And since the bird could not evolve in order to avoid predation, it became extinct by the 17th century. The movie attempts to find the contemporary dodos in the evolution vs. intelligent design debate; which belief will survive in today's society?


As a brief background, in 2005 both Time and Newsweek published articles discussing the intelligent design vs. evolution debate. Also in 2005, in the Kitzmiller v. Dover Area School District case, a US federal court ruled against the Dover (Pennsylvania) school district's decision to teach intelligent design (that some higher intelligence created the universe) in science classes as an alternative to the subject of evolution. The main argument was that because intelligent design had no supporting scientific evidence, it is "essentially religious in nature." (Wikipedia.org)

Here's a link for more information about intelligent design: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Intelligent_design

Here's a link for more information about dodo birds:

Amazon.com review is up at http://www.amazon.com/Autobiography-Charles-Darwin-1809-1882/dp/0393310698/ref=pd_bbs_sr_1/002-5828627-0155228?ie=UTF8&s=books&qid=1176241364&sr=8-1

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