"Museums, God and Man"
In the Travel section of the New York Times on Thursday April 27 there was a pretty interesting article about the growing number of exhibits in science museums relating to evolution. In the American Museum of Natural History in New York city there is a new "Hall of Human Origins" devoted entirely to addressing the scientific view of evolution. There are models, explainations and films. In addition the exhibit addresses specific questions that interest viewers. For example, there is a section on the evoltuion of racial differences. Other recent exhibits include a new one in the Field Museum in Chicago entitled "Dinosours, Ancient Fossils and New Discoveries" that was created as follow up to the permanent exhibit on evolution. Other exhibits are currently on tour such as one entitled "Darwin" which is moving from Boston to Chicago, and one entitled, "Explore Evolution" which has toured the midwest and west coast. In addtion, in San Diego, the permanent exhibit “Footsteps Through Time: Four Million Years of Human Evolution” at the Museum of Man has expanded with displays on stem-cell research and mitochondrial DNA, and soon will add new casts of a Neanderthal skeleton and early hominid skulls found in Chad and the Republic of Georgia.
All of these new exhibitions on evoltion seem like a really great educational tool for the United States population. The fact that the US in particular hosts such a large population that doesn't believe in evolution is quite startling, so this is deffinitely a step in the right direction. Also, these new exhibits incorporting current research are a really great way to keep the public up to date on new discoveries.
Of course, there is always a backlash from opposing creationist groups who wish to counter the exhibits with their own. In Petersburg Kentuky the Christian group, Answers in Genesis, plans to open a large Creationist Museum on May 28. According to the owner there will be sculptures and displays that offer a biblical interpretation of man's origins. The interesting thing is that the museum will be staffed with expert scientists. The owner made sure not to make a distinction between his museum and the other evoltution exhibits. He said, "All museums are religious museums, because those that explain life without God — that's a religious position, that's a faith position that everything happens by natural process.”
To read this article go to : http://travel.nytimes.com/2007/04/27/travel/escapes/27ahead.html?n=Top%2fNews%2fScience%2fTopics%2fEvolution