Book Reviews June 1998

THE SECRET MELODY and Man Created the Universe by Trinh Xuan Thuan. Oxford, England: Oxford University Press, 1995. xvi + 313 pages, glossary, index. $25.00.

The dust jacket refers to Trinh Xuan Thuan, an astronomer at the University of Virginia, as the French Carl Sagan. Like the late Carl Sagan, Professor Thuan has a splendid gift of finding vivid and memorable expressions to bring the mysteries of astronomy to life. For example, we might naively think that the most massive stars would last longest, with their larger hydrogen reserves. Not at all! The richest people are often the most spendthrift, he warns us. Or consider the density of a white dwarf star: it is like compressing one hundred Eiffel towers into the tip of your ball point pen. Or notice the arresting headings, such as Three Ways to Die or Can We Make an Omelette Before We Break the Eggs?

But with this important and brilliant similarity, the comparison ends. Unlike Carl Sagan, who was a thorough-going mechanist, highly suspicious of and often antagonistic to theology, Thuan brings a reverence to his view of the universe, and at the close of his book, a sympathetic stance with respect to our religious impulses. Science is no great help when it is a question of faith. Scientists have to weigh the risks and take the plunge. They have to make a wager, just like Pascal. For myself, I am prepared to bet on the existence of a supreme being  Betting on chance implies nonsense and despair, as witness the cries of distress by Monod and Weinberg. Why not, then, bet rather on sense and hope?

The curious subtitle to the book, and man created the universe, may at first blush strike a note of human triumphalism and the elimination of God. Since quite the opposite is intended, the subtitle is in a sense an unfortunate choice. Thuan means that God has given the universe a subtle and deep rationality that humankind will never fully discover, but in the meantime we model and create a picture of the universe as we try to understand it. For this reason he includes, in broad-brush strokes, some of the historical background that has led to our view of the cosmos.

I was, frankly, charmed by the briskly comprehensible tone of the book. Its story moves in a swift and entertaining fashion, covering most of the excitement of modern astronomy. If the author has slipped occasionally, the mistakes are forgivable (though they should be corrected if the book moves to another edition). He falls victim to the oft-repeated mythology of epicycles on epicycles in the Ptolemaic system, and he says that cepheid variables in the Andromeda galaxy are four times more luminous than those in our own not true! I believe it is incorrect to claim that physicists, uneasy that religion was raising its ugly head in the Big Bang cosmology, subconsciously forgot George Gamow's prediction of the background radiation. (The problem was that Gamow's closely-connected scheme for the creation of all the elements in the initial explosion would not work because of the lack of a stable mass 5.) He also repeats (twice) some nonsense about ten new galaxies appearing over the cosmological horizon every year because of the expansion of the universe. Nor can I accept the claim, made all too bold by the general terseness of the account, that in a single stroke Copernicus had dethroned humankind from its central place in the universe, and reduced Man to insignificance.

Yet counterbalancing each question mark I placed in the margin are places where I've marked nice! or good! I'll reread the lucid section on the ratio of hydrogen to helium atoms before my next class lecture that mentions element formation. I like the idea of the cosmic clock that delights archaeologists but terrorizes art forgers. And the explanation of how quantum uncertainty is directly responsible for our existence arrested my attention. I cannot think of any other popular astronomy book that quite fills this niche, so I happily recommend it.

Reviewed by Owen Gingerich, Professor of Astronomy and History of Science, Harvard-Smithsonian Center for Astrophysics, Cambridge, MA 02138.

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THE INFLATIONARY UNIVERSE: The Quest for a New Theory of Cosmic Origins by Alan H. Guth. Reading, MA: Helix Books (Addison-Wesley Publishing Company, Inc.), 1997. 358 pages, index. Hardcover; $25.00.

As the subtitle implies, this book is about the search for a scientific explanation for the origin of the universe. Guth explains that until recently the question, Where did all this come from? was thought to be outside the scope of science. The Inflationary Universe theory attempts to explain the cause of the Big Bang within the laws of physics. However, this idea has not gained nearly as much popular attention as the classic Big Bang theory in which the expansion of the universe is taken as an initial condition. That is probably because of the difficult and esoteric nature of the subject, which is a cross between particle physics and traditional cosmology. Guth, a key figure in the development of the Inflationary theory, attempts to make it more accessible to a wider audience. In the process, he tells the story of the theory's development.

The preface states, No special scientific knowledge is expected on the part of the reader, although presumably the reader knows about atoms, protons, neutrons, and electrons. Guth presents clear and fairly detailed explanations of the necessary physics without much mathematics. However, the book may be slow going if the topics of cosmology and particle physics are new to the reader. For those who want to learn even more, there are extensive notes. A measure of patience will be required while the background information is developed because the Inflationary Universe theory is not explained until over halfway through the book. The personal stories told along the way will help in that respect. Perhaps it is not emphasized enough that Inflation remains somewhat speculative because it relies on Grand Unified Theories (GUTs) which are beyond the reach of current experiments.

Guth's personal account of how the theory was developed is what will set this book apart from any other on the same topic. The diary that he mentions must be a detailed one because he can give details of events almost twenty years after they occurred. The few places where he states that he does not remember something stand out as exceptions. Guth is often singled out as the originator of Inflation, but he does a nice job of giving credit to many people, such as Andrei Linde and Paul Steinhardt, who also made contributions. One interesting theme of the book is how Guth's career advanced with the development of the theory. Overall, he comes across as a fairly modest figure who is even willing to tell stories where he comes across as a bit foolish. My favorite is about a misunderstanding that took place during a meeting with Andrei Sakharov.

After presenting the original theory, some modifications that it required, and some experimental results supporting it, the last three chapters of the book deal with more speculative ideas. These include the possibilities of self-reproducing universes and the creation of a universe in the laboratory. Finally, Guth revisits the idea which begins the book, that the universe might be a vacuum fluctuation. He concludes: If the creation of the universe can be explained as a quantum process, we would be left with one deep mystery of existence: What is it that determined the laws of physics?

In 1977, The First Three Minutes by Steven Weinberg did a great deal to popularize recent ideas in cosmology to the scientifically curious. Interestingly, Guth mentions that as a postdoc he once crammed for a talk using that book because he was not secure about his knowledge of cosmology. Obviously, that is no longer the case. The Inflationary Universe is an excellent update on the state of cosmology, especially how it has been changed by new ideas in particle physics. It may be a challenging book, but it is also a rewarding one.

Reviewed by Alan J. DeWeerd, Assistant Professor of Physics, Creighton University, Omaha, NE 68178

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THE FABRIC OF REALITY by David Deutsch. New York: The Penguin Press, 1997. 366 pages, index and bibliography. Hardcover; $29.95.

One interpretation of the science of quantum mechanics is the theory of multiple universes. One interpretation of the science of biology is Darwinism, specifically as described and discussed by Richard Dawkins. Deutsch takes these two interpretations, and, intertwining them with discussions of epistemology and the theory of computation, concludes that not only are these interpretations true, but that they are true in the sense that they describe the very fabric of reality, and, hence, are leading us close to a Theory of Everything (TOE).

The book comes with words of high praise by Paul Davies, Frank Tipler, Douglas Adams, and others. Richard Dawkins and Frank Tipler are cited in the acknowledgments section.

The book's subtitle is The Science of Parallel UniversesCand Its Implications. Following an introductory chapter, in which the book's goals are set forth, Deutsch begins his arguments with a truly magnificent description of the famous quantum light experiment, concluding that only a multiverse explanation can possibly fit the observed data. As the book progresses, he argues well that this particular explanation could be the cornerstone of an ultimate TOE (more than the relatively simple TOE that physicists seek).

Whatever one thinks of the multiverse explanation, this book is worth reading and ought to be in all college libraries. It is well written, interesting, and entertaining. The author, a researcher at Oxford University, has the credentials to be heard.

Reviewed by John W. Burgeson, IBM Corporation (retired), 6715 Colina Lane, Austin, TX 78759.

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NSTITUTING SCIENCE: The Cultural Production of Scientific Disciplines by Timothy Lenoir. Stanford, CA: Stanford University Press, 1997. 351 pages. Hardcover; $55.00.

Lenoir is professor of History of Science at Stanford University. In the introduction, we read that professional life in scientific fields happens in nested, overlapping, and sometimes conflicting institutions. A scientist usually belongs to more institutions than just scientific ones. Lenoir shows how interactions with artists and politicians influence careers and institutions, in this case scientific institutions, such as laboratories where skills are coordinated. Laboratories are mostly attached to universities, hospitals, or businesses. Each of these institutions has its own culture. Not knowing and conforming to that culture will cause frustration. Lenoir claims that people working in these institutions are often not aware of the invisible culture even when they conform to it.

Lenoir shows how in nineteenth century Germany the broader reshaping of the middle classes reshaped the scientific and medical culture. He discusses concerns, mainly those of medical laboratories, and also considers painting, physics, chemistry, medicine, and politics to show that existing universities or a single group of scientists do not create scientific disciplines and institutions. Reshaping involves a particular outlook on life developed through interaction in a larger society. Only in this way are new ideas worked out. In Germany it was the developing middle class which became stronger after the revolutions of the eighteenth and nineteenth centuries. Artists, scientists, and politicians interacted to create, among other innovations, new science laboratories and new disciplines in a modern Germany. Lenoir shows how we also see the same development in the arts.

In the last chapter, Lenoir and Christophe LÈcuyer talk about the new discipline of Nuclear Magnetic Resonance. They consider the beginnings of this work in the laboratory of Varian Associates, close to Stanford University, and describe the people and the reason why they set up their own company: to have more freedom to do the work they liked. A key person in the devolopment of Varian Associates was Russell Varian, who was not admitted into the doctoral program of Stanford University. Lenoir calls him an instrument maker. Because producing excellent scientific instruments requires listening to industrialists, here too reasons other than only scientific ones caused the beginning of a new discipline.

Lenoir refers to the works of philosophers Peirce and William James to explain that the notion of truth is historically situated. Their philosophy was pragmatic and realistic to get out of the impasse of objectivism. Lenoir refers to Husserl's idea of life-world as a precondition for objective science. It is a resource to link pragmatism with concerns about instrumentation and the material embodiment of dispositions that mediate between disparate domains of experience. Lenoir wants to get away from a history of science dominated by theory and gain an insight into the historically situated, time-dependent character of plans of action.

Often in the history of science authors limit themselves to the particular scientific discipline about which they write. Reality is, however, more complex. For that reason I like the scope of this book. The ideas expressed in this book are worth considering even if we are not interested in medical laboratories in nineteenth century Germany. The book shows that science is not just something standing apart from the rest of life. That should spur us on to show what Christianity means for science, just as Lenoir shows what revolutionary movements accomplished in painting and medical laboratories. I recommend the book to historians and philosophers of science.

Reviewed by Jan de Koning, 20 Crispin Crescent, Willowdale, ON, Canada M2R 2V7.

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 MODERN CULTURE FROM A COMPARATIVE PERSPECTIVE by Wilfred Cantwell Smith. Albany: State University of New York Press, 1997. 174 pages, notes, references, index. Paperback; $14.95.

I do not remember when I last read so small a book so packed with large ideas. Because of Smith's breadth of understanding, this book about modern culture, by a student of comparative religion, will be of great value in the study of science and religion. How science and religion are to relate has been important to us because science as we know it sprang from a modern way of looking at the world. What is perhaps less widely recognized among students of science and religion is that our concept of religion, too, as an objective thing that can be apart from, even at odds with, science, is also a modern, Western perspective.

Smith is Professor Emeritus of the Comparative History of Religion at Harvard University. He has written many articles, and nearly a dozen of his books are widely available. Modern Culture is a collection of eight articles brought together by John Burbidge, Professor of Philosophy at Trent University. Islamic Resurgence is new; the rest were written in the 1970s and 1980s. Such collections often have their greatest appeal to specialists already familiar with the author. But Burbidge's insight is that Smith has much to say about modern culture, and that these ideas born of comparative study should be more well known. I cannot agree more. The articles fit together well, and, far from being dated, have much to offer current debates. In fact, they are so current, I wonder if perhaps they did not seem a bit ahead of their time when first written. Though Smith sometimes sounds postmodern, his perspective on modern culture is not always negative, and he is not radically skeptical of knowledge and reality. Indeed, he is a vigorous exponent of the view that there is far more to reality than we moderns have been able to grasp, not less.

Here are just a few of his fascinating insights. In History in Relation to Both Science and Religion, he argues that while science is the most striking development of the modern age, our perspective on history is equally new and profound. The prime question for Western civilization will be to choose between two radically divergent options: whether to subordinate its views of human affairs therefore, of human history to its understanding of science; or vice versa, to subordinate its understanding of science to its sense of history and of the human (p. 11). He is not arguing that there is anything wrong with science, yet is pleased to see signs, as am I, that we are now leaning toward the latter.

In Smith's hands, even a discussion of English renderings of book titles brings forth fascinating insights into the history of thought. His premise worked out in discussions of how Durkheim, Aquinas, and Schleiermacher have all been, in a manner, domesticated is that even so apparently simple a task as translating a title leaves much room for unwitting corruption of the intended idea.

In Philosophia as one of the Religious Traditions of Humankind, he argues that religions are more divergent than we had thought, and that it is possible to be part of more than one religion at a time. These points pave the way for his conclusion that the tradition developed in Greece and powerfully with us to this day, is as much a religion as any (and science a radical sect). This perspective is helpful in approaching a range of intellectual problems. Thus he argues (p. 42) that the university is not, and cannot be, free of religion, and that the idea of separation of church and state as some conceive it is simply absurd. If religious conviction nurtures honesty, is honesty to be ruled illegal in the public realm? Likewise we can look at the relationships of science and theology as efforts to relate faith in God to faith in Reason (p. 43).

I believe there is something very important in this, though I am not fully convinced of the premises. My main disagreement concerns his view that the concept of religion is so misleading. This is a complex matter, and I cannot do justice here to Smith's position much less his reasons. But I would suggest there are other possible positions. Recent work does appear to indicate that religions have little in common, but how much is due to scholarly assumptions? Perhaps scholars are having such trouble with religion not just because of the historically-particular origins of the concept (on which Smith has a good point), but because of the influence of philosophical naturalism in the study of religion. It is not that there is nothing religions have in common, but that when we deny the supernatural, the one central feature of religion, it begins to look like there is no center.

These examples can only hint at the extraordinary depth and range of insights here. Smith pushes a question, and pushes hard, in what seems, at first, strange ways. Yet all the while he remains most refreshingly sympathetic to the deeper aims of religion. If this book becomes well known among scholars of science and theology, it could add a new dimension to our discussions.

Reviewed by Paul K. Wason, Bates College, Lewiston, ME 04240

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HUXLEY: From Devil's Disciple to Evolution's High Priest by Adrian Desmond. Reading, MA: Addison-Wesley, 1997. 848 pages, introduction, bibliography, notes, and index. Hardcover; $37.50.

Thomas Henry Huxley (1825-1895) was one of the most important figures of Charles Darwin's day, yet most readers would view him mainly in terms of his clash over evolution with Bishop Wilberforce at the Oxford BAAS Meeting in 1860 or for his antireligious stance. Despite the book's subtitle, there was much more to the man and his accomplishments than his outspoken support of Darwin. Adrian Desmond's The Politics of Evolution and Darwin (with Jim Moore) have won him international awards.

Desmond had access to thousands of the Huxley family letters which allowed him to view his daily correspondence and frame an extraordinary picture of an uncommon man. For Desmond:

Huxley was one of the founders of the skeptical, scientific twentieth century. We owe to him that enduring metaphor, the war of science against theology. He coined the word agnostic and contributed to the West's existential crisis. All this makes him seem so modern that we want to snatch him from his age. Today his agnostic stance seems obvious. But yesterday, it was an immensely daring, motivated, ideological position. That plodding zoological autocrat, Richard Owen, called him a pervert with some, perhaps congenital, defect of mind for denying Divine will in Nature. Who can realize the prissy, patronaged-based, undemocratic, sermon-dominated, Anglican-controlled, different, society Huxley faced, and faced squarely? (xvii)

Tom was the youngest child of six born to an impoverished evangelical school teacher. At 13 he was apprenticed in medicine to his sister Ellen's husband in Coventry. Two years later he moved to London to work under Thomas Chandler, a former House Surgeon at University Hospital at a time when the talent before rank movement was active. He enrolled at Sydenham College on borrowed money in 1841, winning prizes and scholarships in following a demanding pace of medical and philosophical reading. He next served at Charing Cross Hospital where he won the chemistry and physiology medals. In 1845 he took Part 1 of the London University Bachelor of Medicine exam, winning the gold metal for anatomy and physiology. Far in debt, he became a surgeon's mate on H.M.S. Rattlesnake destined for an exploring expedition to New Guinea. As the vessel moved to the Far East, he treated patients, collected specimens, wrote scientific papers, and, in Sydney, Australia, found `Nettie' Woodstock, who would later become his wife. He returned to London in 1850 to find that his papers had been published in his absence. Soon after, he was elected a fellow of the Royal Society and was regarded as headed for great things; however, the path out of poverty to pursue science rather than medicine was uncertain.


Desmond plots Huxley's rise from debt-ridden surgeon's mate to the top of England's scientific heap with verve, allowing his subject to vent his innermost thoughts at his moments of triumph and failure. Able to make friends with people of diverse backgrounds, he easily joined the scientific establishment which, recognizing his scientific promise, teaching ideas, and organizational skills, helped him obtain research grants and teaching positions. He led in creating London teaching institutions which offered a laboratory where the nation's secondary school teachers learned practical laboratory skills. A leader of the science for all movement, he became an advisor to Oxbridge and Crown despite a feisty style that often got him in hot water with the gentry and clerical establishment. He led the drive to move English science from the carriage houses of wealthy amateurs to institutions with paid scientists.


Huxley's guarded acceptance and spirited proclamation of Darwin's ideas are carefully documented. The story-behind-the-story of his relationships with Wilburforce and other clergy offer a new picture of his struggle with Christianity. An enormously interesting man, he seems almost a superman. His standing with his scientific peers was revealed in what Desmond calls the greatest constellation of Victorian scientists ever to gather on one spot at his graveside; no invitations had been sent.

Huxley's prose is penned in the vernacular of the period but with a zesty 90's spin that is always interesting, but sometimes forced. This superb biography provides the reader with an illuminating picture of Victorian culture in tracing the path of one outsider to the top. The religious issues have not gone away. Huxley belongs in libraries and on the shelf of anyone interested in the early English response to evolution.

Reviewed by J. W. Haas, Jr., Gordon College, Wenham, MA 01984.

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 THE FOSSIL TRAIL by Ian Tattersall. New York: Oxford University Press, 1995. 262 pages, index. Hardcover; $25.00.

A rapid overview of the outlines of human evolution is contained in The Fossil Trail. The author is the Head of the Anthropology Department at the American Museum of Natural History. He has written the 1993 book, The Human Odyssey, and was an editor of the 1988 Encyclopedia of Human Evolution and Prehistory. In 1982, he also coauthored, with Niles Eldredge, The Myths of Human Evolution. His broad experience and wide exposure to various subdisciplines in anthropology clearly show through in this work.

The book is organized historically and begins with a discussion of the pre-Darwinian finds of human artifacts and the bones of extinct animals. Tattersall quickly traces the struggle between theology, the concepts of the fixity of species and the slow realization of the western world that the earth is older than 6,000 years. His book is full of little known accounts and dead-end explanations. For example, some initial explanations of stone tools were that they were petrified thunderbolts, fairy arrows, or condensations from clouds. Europe, it seems, had forgotten that men used to make stone tools. He informs the reader of many often overlooked people who anticipated the positions advocated by Darwin. A case in point is that of Robert Chambers, who published anonymously in 1844 Vestiges of the Natural History of Creation, which advocated an almost Darwinian position that life evolved through time in a fashion that had no relationship with catastrophes. It was Chambers' poor science that prevented evolution from being called Chamberism.


Tattersall continues with the accounts of the discoveries of Neanderthal, Homo erectus, Australopithecus and Habilis. Throughout these chapters, there is plenty of discussion of the behavior of the hominids. Tattersall takes a position that the behavioral repertoire of the ancient hominids was qualitatively different from that of modern man. This is clearly connected with his strong belief in the worldwide replacement of archaic hominids by anatomically modern man over the past 100,000 years. This view has a tendency to downplay the cognitive abilities of the ancients because if they were replaced, it is obvious that they weren't as good as the replacers. He holds that Homo erectus is merely a scavenger and that Neanderthal was not as bright as modern men. But he is fair in his discussion of the evidence. It is refreshing to see someone who is not afraid to discuss issues that contradict his own point of view. There is an excellent, if skeptical, discussion of the tool-making abilities of Australopithecus robustus (or Paranthropus robustus) found in Member 3 at Swartkrans, South Africa. This bed has only yielded fossils of Australopithecus bones but has produced the earliest evidence for the use of fire and the making of bone tools. The author apparently accepts the validity of the huts built by Homo erectus at Terra Amata, France 400,000 years ago. The only disappointment is the way he deals the fact that the earliest Upper Paleolithic tool assemblage, the Chatelperronian, was made by Neanderthals, not by modern humans. He assumes that the Neanderthals acquired this capability by copying modern man. However, all of this took place before there was evidence of modern man in Western Europe. The author ignores the fact that the earliest Aurignacian toolkit (the other early Upper Paleolithic toolkit) is found in strata dated ca. 40,000 years ago in Spain, a region dominated by Neanderthals until around 30,000 years ago. In fact the earliest fossil of anatomically modern man in Western Europe dates to around 33,000 yars ago, long after the rise of Upper Paleolithic toolkits.

The only problem, which is a problem for any author in this rapidly changing field, is that some of Tattersall's beliefs about the cognitive abilities of the archaics have been disproved since his work was published. Wooden spears, made 400,000 years ago by archaics, clearly demonstrate that the archaics were big-game hunters, not scavengers. The discovery last year of art at Jinmium, Australia, dated to 116,000-176,000 years ago, is clearly incompatible with Tattersall's low view of hominid cognitive capabilities. And the recently discovered burial rites of the more than 300,000 year old people at Sima de los Huesos, Spain, implies much more to the religious beliefs than Tattersall would accept. All this being said, the book is a very excellent addition to any library.

Reviewed by Glenn R. Morton, 16075 Longvista Dr., Dallas, Texas 75248

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 THE ECOLOGY OF HOPE: Communities Collaborate for Sustainability by Ted Bernard and Jora Young. East Haven, CT: New Society Publishers, 1997. 209 pages. Paperback; $16.95.

With so much available on restoring human relationships with the natural world, a legitimate question is why one would choose this book. Initially, the title seems overblown; the subtitle is more in keeping with the content. Moreover, in the company of the current wave of related works, this prose seems pedestrian, the grammar occasionally sloppy, and the content bordering on the simplistic. The answer lies in the hope for a sustainable future expressed through the selected local histories, and its refreshingly accessible conversational style.

This is a collection of new stories of local conservation efforts, a contemporary innovation in approaching Western estrangement from the natural world. These are stories of correction and restoration, related in three parts: a retelling of American conservation history for context, the local stories themselves, and an exposition of the transcending moral. The text is supported in endnotes and carried forward by a brief epilogue inviting readers to be open to conservation opportunities and to be pulled into the light instead of turning away, preoccupied or cynical.

The authors' thesis is that we must attain sustainability in agriculture, forestry, and fisheries before we can hope to apply that philosophy on any grander environmental scale. A complementary theme is that a network of people is requisite to resolving environmental problems. Local stories recount such sustainability efforts and provide a foundation for such a network. Each story from around the continental United States is preceded by a map in silhouette locating the subject community. Why stories? Because, according to Thomas Berry, we are currently between stories, and the old one is no longer effective in our attempts to emerge from a Dark Age of environmental exploitation. Why here and now? Because existing institutions for making choices are not solving the problems. Local sustainability is characterized as a third wave of American conservation and one based on an ecological worldview, encompassing deep ecology and bioregionalism as well as conservation's own historical predecessors. There are additional contributions through resurgent interest in rebuilding human community. An environmental tapestry results, woven from these conceptual threads, but with a design not yet clear.

The content and tone are indicated in the observations, you won't find a place where sustainability is perfectly practiced and Asustainability is like pure love and equality: grand goals that should always lead human endeavor but a destination at which we will never arrive (p. 15). The stories themselves provide many lessons and caveats: Foresight and philanthropy must be united with political savvy in keeping with local realities, and the success stories may not be without a tarnish of greed and of fouling one's own nest (Maine's Monhegan Island). A pre-existing attitude of volunteerism can be a meaningful boon (Chattanooga, Tennessee). Hope is to be found in the involvement of a broad cross-section of people even in face of poverty and lost resource-based industries. And, given the inevitable tensions, win-win situations are preferred and to be sought out in place of the more frequently experienced win-lose (Virginia's eastern shore). Both self-discipline and respect for generations of local knowledge are in order as is a spirit of forgiveness for past wrongs (Menominee Reservation in Wisconsin). Working together in a spirit of cooperation among those seldom deemed allies may be essential. Furthermore, the focus must turn from personal positions and needs to the needs of regional resources (the Arizona, New Mexico, and Mexico borderlands).

Ultimately, the interweaving theme the moral of these stories is one of hope for a brighter environmental future fostered on a local scale and expanding into the national and even the global, starting with environmental components we claim as resources. Eden was not found among the subject communities, but they reveal that some vision is essential if environments and people are not to perish. A land ethic and a human one must be combined. That moral, with all its lessons, provides the reason for perusing this book. The message is more important than its mode of conveyance.

Reviewed by Dorothy J. Howell, student in Antioch New England's Environmental Studies doctoral program, Keene, NH 03431.

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 ECOLOGISTS AND ENVIRONMENTAL POLITICS: A History of Contemporary Ecology by Stephen Bocking. New Haven, CT: Yale University Press, 1997. 271 pages, index. Hardcover; $35.00.

Ecologists, like other scientists, have for decades debated their role in society and the sociopolitical process. While some argue that ecologists should participate in environmental politics, others think that they should focus exclusively on scientific issues. In this book, Bocking, an environmental historian at Trent University in Canada, explores the debate by recounting the history of ecology in Great Britain, the United States, and Canada since the 1940s.

Bocking tells this history through four case studies: the origins and early research of the Nature Conservancy in Great Britain; the development of ecology at the Oak Ridge National Laboratory in Tennessee; the work of the Hubbard Brook Ecosystem Study in New Hampshire; and research in fisheries ecology conducted by the University of Toronto and the Ontario provincial government. Each of these settings involved extensive, and sometimes confrontational, interactions among scientists in research settings, politicians, funding agencies in both the public and private sector, and a host of other players.

In each institution, ecologists markedly influenced the development of their discipline by the types of questions they chose to explore and the methodologies and reporting procedures they employed. By comparing these case studies, Bocking demonstrates how the places of contemporary scienceClaboratories, landscapes, and funding agencies and its purposes, as expressed through the political roles of expertise and specific managerial and regulatory responsibilities, have shaped contemporary ecology and its application to pressing environmental problems.

The book is important for understanding the current landscape of ecological research, but, more importantly, for gaining appreciation of the complex interactions among science, technology, and society. The sometimes alleged neutrality of science is exposed as a facade in the confused jumble of funding, competing proposals, publicity, and research that comprises the contemporary scientific enterprise. The application of case studies to make the major points within the book is a good example of the use of more qualitative approaches which focus on situation and context to enrich understanding of human processes and institutions. Christians can fruitfully read the book not only to explore the above issues but also to consider how Christian scientists should relate to the larger sociopolitical world within which research laboratories are nested. It could serve as a useful set of test cases for the application of some of the ideas advanced in Walter Hearn's latest book, Being a Christian in Science (InterVarsity Press).

Reviewed by Dennis W. Cheek, Director, Office of Information Services and Research, RI Department of Education and Research Associate Professor of Education, University of RI, 255 Westminster Street, Providence, RI 02903-3400.

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REDEEMING THE TIME: A Political Theology of the Environment by Stephen Bede Scharper. New York: Continuum, 1997. 240 pages, index. Hardcover; $29.95.

Much of the debate in the late twentieth century concerning human roles and responsibilities toward the environment has been markedly free of reference to religious values. Yet clearly any human decision regarding the proper and improper uses of the environment and natural resources is a value-laden enterprise. The author, current President of the Religious Education Association and a faculty member of the University of Notre Dame, provides a succinct and helpful look at religious approaches to the environment. He has developed his analysis over the course of many years of teaching an undergraduate course in religion and the environment.

The book opens by considering the question, What is the proper role of humans in light of the ecological crisis? The core apologetic argument is advanced that only a religious point of view seeing human agency as central to both the devastation and the reclamation of planetary life is viable. Such a religious view must include social, economic, and cultural, as well as theological, transformation to be effective in confronting threats to the environment. Three major branches of Christian ecological discourse are considered, with representatives from each branch being briefly described and considered. The apologetic approach has concentrated its energies on responding to Lynn White's arguments and variations on his thesis. Key respondents within this approach are Robin Attfield, Thomas Sieger Derr, and H. Paul Santmire. The constructive approach accepts some Christian culpability for the core of White's critique and seeks to build upon the Judeo-Christian tradition for an environmental theology. Representatives of this approach are Douglas John Hall, J¸rgen Moltmann, and Walter Brueggemann. The listening approach is less dependent upon either White's analysis or Christian tradition, seeking instead to hear nature and creation itself, mediated through a mÈlange of non-Christian religious thought and natural science. Key figures described in this approach are John Carmody, Albert Fritsch, and Thomas Berry.

Subsequent chapters consider approaches such as the new cosmology, ecofeminism, process thought, Gaia theory, and liberation theology. While each of these approaches recognizes the role of the human in the present environmental crisis, Scharper finds each approach incomplete or inadequate. His general method is to briefly describe each approach through the work of one or two of its key proponents. Then he discusses the role of humans in this particular approach, identifying human responsibilities and roles. Finally, he loops back to the various theological/religious approaches he discussed in the first chapter, showing how certain writers have interacted with these approaches in their religious/theological work.

The final chapter advances a preliminary political theology of the environment. It builds upon the rich metaphors found in the literature of the various writers surveyed. As Scharper explains, All of these metaphors are placed as buoys, as it were, helping Christian theologians to navigate between the Scylla of a theological anthropology that perceives the human as lord, master, and telos of creation and the Charybdis of viewing the human as an inconsequential inhabitant in the overall functioning of the planet, as Gaia and deep ecology suggest (p. 186).

Any ASA member interested in ecology and Christian responsibility will find the discussion and analysis useful. Disappointingly, more conservative and evangelical Christian work in ecology such as that produced under the auspices of the Au Sable Institute, are not even referenced in this book. The book provides ample challenges for the work ahead and is an excellent entree into some of the key philosophical and theological issues which must be considered.

Reviewed by Dennis W. Cheek, Director, Office of Information Services and Research, RI Department of Education and Research Associate Professor of Education, University of RI, 255 Westminster Street, Providence, RI 02903-3400.

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 RELIGION AND TECHNOLOGY: A Study in the Philosophy of Culture by Jay Newman. Westport, CT: Praeger, 1997. 208 pages, index. Hardcover; $55.00.

I tell my students that you can't have a meaningful discussion without defining terms. Newman would probably agree, but this is a serious book. One part of my definition of serious is that this book isn't superficial. Newman realizes that religion, technology, and culture are not easy to define, and, therefore, he warns readers that he hasn't defined terms, as these definitions in themselves would each be a book length study. However, most readers would have little quarrel with what they perceived to be his definitions. He is, of course, aware that there are many religions, but sticks almost entirely to Judaism and Christianity. A quote might help illustrate his thinking on defining terms:

One can easily become discouraged when one reflects on the ambiguity of a key term, especially when one has been striving to clarify its meaning; and the more that one dwells on linguistic and conceptual confusions related to the term, the more one is likely to feel that the subject matter of one's investigation is gradually slipping out of one's grasp. I suspect that this fear of losing control of one's subject matter and getting lost among all the competing perspectives has contributed greatly to turning many a subtle philosophical mind into a dogmatic ideologist. Besides, the crowd often prefers boldness to subtlety and rewards it accordingly (p. 60).

Another part of serious is that this is a scholarly book. There are about 400 notes (at the ends of the chapters) and almost twelve pages of bibliography. The only writer I did not find who might have been included was Jeremy Rifkin. There are no charts or illustrations, and none are needed. There are scriptural references, and comments on the thoughts of others on relevant Scripture, when appropriate. Serious also means that Newman knows, and uses, western cultural history. This is not just a book about the 1990s. Newman does have opinions, but they don't stand out. As far as I can tell, he treats the opinions of others fairly, and is cautious in presenting his own.

There are five chapters. The first is Religion and Antitechnology. In this chapter, Newman considers the writing of several authors who have thought that technology is antireligious, or that religion should be antitechnological, notably Langdon Gilkey and Jacques Ellul. Newman clearly doesn't believe that a conflict is necessary. He closes the chapter by reminding readers that a religious organization (namely the Inquisition) used technology to advance its ends.

The second chapter is Technology and Techne, in which he considers some of the definitions of technology, and finds that many thinkers haven't been broad enough in their definitions. (Techne is from Aristotle and Plato, and means something like craft, making things, and the like.) The third chapter is Technology and Progress. One of his main concerns here is the question of whether technology decreases or increases freedom. Of course, the answer is that the use of technology has done both.

Chapter four is Technology as a Religious Endeavor. The very thought is fascinating. Newman points out that much of religion is made by humans. Therefore, in a sense, religion is technology. There is, or should be, artistry in the production of a sermon, for instance. Besides, one of the most important technological developments, printing, has been crucial for the spread of religion. Other technologies have also contributed, of course. Newman includes the story of the golden calf, which shows that the worship of a technological product, apart from God, is wrong. He quotes Margaret Mead, who said that Christianity applauds those who volunteer their time to work in a soup kitchen, but not those whose careers are devoting to breeding better crops or developing better ways of delivering fertilizer. Unfortunately, she is right.

Chapter five is Religion, Technology and Culture. I find that I can't summarize this simply, perhaps because Newman has not come to firm conclusions. I summarize the entire book by saying that the interaction between religion and culture has been, is, and almost certainly will be complex.

One point that Newman alludes to, but does not magnify, is the suspicion that opposition to technology is often just because it is new, and we aren't used to it. However, this opposition often puts on the mask of protecting religious interests, when they may not really be at stake.

Newman is a professor of philosophy at the University of Guelph, and an author of eight other books. This book is written so that readers should have no trouble understanding it. But is it worth $55? Probably, but you might want to hold out for the paperback, if there is one.

Reviewed by Martin LaBar, Southern Wesleyan University, Box 1020, Central, SC 29630.

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 ANGLO-AMERICAN POSTMODERNITY: Philosophical Perspectives on Science, Religion, and Ethics by Nancey Murphy. New York: Westview Press, 1997. 211 pages, index. Paperback; $18.95.

In the essays that make up this book, Nancey Murphy advocates a shift towards a more holistic approach to the study of religion, science, and ethics, which she describes as postmodern. However, in contrast to what might be called the hard postmodernism of Continental (mostly French) thinkers, Murphy presents a soft postmodernism, which she terms Anglo-American. This softer postmodernism is characterized by a movement away from positivist and modernist conceptions of science and religion, and, at the same time, avoids the excesses and pitfalls of the harder deconstructionist position generally associated with postmodernism.

In her introductory essay, Murphy characterizes modernist debates as taking place along three Cartesian axes. Modern epistemology is dominated by concerns about the foundations of knowledge, with a range of responses from absolute foundationalism to absolute skepticism. In the philosophy of language, referentialism is the dominant modern theme, with scholarly opinion ranging between representationalism and expressivism. Finally, modern approaches to metaphysics are characterized by debates over reductionism, with atomists at one end of the scale and idealists at the other. The point of the postmodern perspective is to move beyond the dualistic limits of these debates, and strive for a holism that is anti-foundationalist, anti-referentialist, and anti-reductionist. The remaining essays, which are divided into three sections, explore these ideas in more detail.

The essays in the first section examine issues in the philosophy of science, with an emphasis on critical realism, relativism, and progress in science. Building on Kuhn's notion of the incommensurability of worldviews, Murphy argues that the proponents of the realist debate spend much of their time talking past each other, and that the confirmation or denial of scientific realism Areally makes no sense in a postmodern world. Rather, what is important is how scientific claims are justified. In her examination of the basis for competing claims, she argues that standards of rationality, rather than being absolute, are based in tradition. This limited relativism allows for the existence of different paradigms, research traditions, and so on. On the final issue, Murphy argues that, as a balance to the medical or biological model, research in the psychosocial aspects of mental illness serves to advance, rather than inhibit, progress in terms of treatment efficacy.

The second section is devoted to an examination of issues in theology and the philosophy of religion. In the first essay, Murphy argues that modernism forced theologians into advocating either a liberalist or fundamentalist position. The former is viewed as experiential, expressivist, immanentist, and incommensurabilist, while the latter is considered to be scriptural, propositional, interventionist, and commensurabilist. Murphy's conclusion is that it has almost been impossible to do theology within this modern framework. Proposing a new agenda for conservative theology, the author advocates incorporating Alasdair MacIntyre's account of truth and the role of Scripture. In the final essay in this section, the author argues that the interpretation of texts should be based on a new philosophy of language that recognizes the development of conventions and practices within communities of users.

The final section contains essays that focus on the relationship among religion, science, and ethics. Murphy first draws attention to parallels between religious thought and scientific reasoning. Exploring the relationship between theory and evidence, he examines how some kinds of religious experience may count as objective, empirical support for religious theory. The next essay argues for a new model of the hierarchy of the sciences in which theology, ethics, and the traditional sciences exist as part of an ordered and intrinsically interconnected system of inquiry. The final essay is directed against reductionism, with particular emphasis on the nonreducibility of ethics to biology. Here, Murphy calls upon the notion of supervenience, which recognizes the importance of context and circumstances that correspond to different levels of analysis. In other words, at any level of analysis, there may be some factor that is essential to our understanding of a particular phenomenon that cannot be reduced to lower levels of analysis. For example, a protein behaves differently in an organism than it does in a test tube. There is something about being in the organism that supervenes the chemical composition of the protein and thus defies the reductionist account of its activity.

This is a challenging and thought-provoking book that requires and deserves careful attention. It will be of particular interest to the readers of this journal because it tackles central issues of religion, science, and ethics. Readers who take the time to wrestle with the issues presented here will be well rewarded for their efforts.

Reviewed by Robert A. Campbell, University College of Cape Breton, Sydney, NS, Canada B1P 6L2.

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 IN DEFENSE OF MIRACLES: A Comprehensive Case For God's Action in History by R. Douglas Geivett and Gary R. Habermas, Eds. Downers Grove, IL: InterVarsity Press, 1997. 330 pages. Paperback.

Geivett, associate professor of philosophy at Talbot School of Theology, Biola University, and Habermas, Distinguished Professor of Apologetics and Philosophy at Liberty University, have assembled a distinguished team of scholars to address the following question: Is the action of God, in history, through miracles possible and have they occurred? The book begins by giving the opposition first crack at debunking such efforts by first reprinting David Hume's 1776 essay 'Of Miracles,' with arguments that are still relevant today, and then giving Hume's modern defender, Antony Flew, professor emeritus at Keele University in England, the opportunity to solidify the case against miracles. The remainder of the book is then devoted to building a thorough case, not only for showing that miracles are possible, but that they are also verifiable and, in fact, have occurred.

The book is divided into four chapters. Geivett and Habermas give a historical backdrop followed in chapter 1 by Hume's and Flew's arguments against the possibility of miracles. Chapter 2 gives rebuttals to these counter-arguments by setting up the possibility of miracles, giving a foundation for later chapters. Chapter 3 presents the theistic context under which miracles are possible and occur. Finally, chapter 4 focuses on the most important miracle in Christian history: the resurrection of Jesus.

The case built for miracles is done carefully and systematically. The counter-arguments of Hume and Flew are each addressed seriously and carefully. The strongest arguments presented against miracles are that no definition can make the determination of a miracle possible and, even if such a definition was possible, no miracle is historically verifiable due to its uniqueness and novelty. In the case for miracles, these arguments are taken up first. Such notable Christian philosophers as Richard L. Purtill, Norman L. Geisler, and Francis J. Beckwith take up this charge and give a working definition of miracle as well as show how historical studies can authenticate such an event.

The question of a consistent worldview allowing for both God's existence and his action is taken up by such philosophers as J. P. Moreland, W. David Beck, and Stephen T. Davis. Here, all the arguments for God's existence are used to give a well-rounded description of his nature and demonstrate how that nature is consistent with actions that can and do occur in history. Furthermore, addressing other religions' claims to miracles is done in a consistent way with claims from Christianity. This allows for openness to such a possibility without compromising Christian theology.

The case for the resurrection of Jesus is the central case study of the book. John S. Feinberg, William Lane Craig, and Gary R. Habermas make a careful analysis of the events surrounding the occurrence and make the case that the timing, style of reporting, and variety of sources are strong supports for its validity.

This book is well organized. While Hume and Flew are given the main task of defending the case against miracles, they are not set up as straw men to be knocked down. A wide range of other arguments from others in the opposition are addressed throughout. This book attempts to leave no stone unturned and presents cogent and incisive arguments in an organized way while not compromising Scripture at any time.

The arguments for the resurrection of Jesus are particularly well done and use the full power of the material furnished in the earlier chapters. A notably demanding section is John S. Feinberg's examination of the question of how Christ could be both God and fully human. Also, J. P. Moreland's section on science and agency theory should be of special interest to scientists.

This book is highly recommended for anyone wanting an apologetic for God acting in history. ASA members should particularly find it a welcome addition to their libraries.

Reviewed by James M. Turner, Visiting Professor of Mathematics, College of the Holy Cross, One College Street, Worcester, MA 01610.

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 A NATURAL HISTORY OF PARENTING: From the Emperor Penguins to Reluctant Ewes, A Naturalist Looks at How Parenting Differs in the Animal World and Ours by Susan Allport.   New York: Harmony Books, 1997. 238 pages. $23.00.

Most parents commiserate as well as celebrate the life of child-rearing. Parenting is painful; parenting is glorious. And as anything so grand and miserable, its waters run deep. Susan Allport explores this depth, from an evolutionary perspective, as she shares the struggles, curiosities, eccentricities, and successes of parenting through such creatures as the dwarf antelopes of Ethiopia, the bluebirds of South Carolina, African elephants, Texas bats, and that incredibly strange species known as Homo sapiens. This is not a theological book, yet at times the reader feels like Job before the whirlwind: Where were you when I laid the foundation of the earth? Consider the Behemoth and Leviathan and try not to shudder in amazement! As Job discovered, insight (theological or otherwise) is inseparable from a larger perspective even if initially overwhelming.

First of all, Allport is a wonderful writer. She guides the reader through complex biological, zoological, and anthropological territory with the compelling drama of a good storyteller and the attentive wisdom of a masterful teacher. She approaches the subject of parenting as a naturalist, a science writer, a part-time shepherd, and finally as a parent. Why do mammals typically incubate and nurture their offspring with their bodies while cold-blooded animals let the earth and sun do the hard work? How does each parenting strategy work in the evolutionary scheme? Why do ewes lick their newborns and why did one of Allport's ewes resist, even at the risk of her own lamb's demise? What difference does it make in a species whether one is a nester or a wanderer? What encourages long-term commitment in mating and parenting, and what encourages philandering and abandonment? Why do so many people comment on seeing the father's traits in newborns? These are samples of the kinds of questions Allport pursues and actually answers.

Questions even more fundamental are addressed as well, such as: What makes a male a male and a female a female and what difference does it make for parenting? Such gender boundaries bend when considering, for example, that the male sea-horse is the one who actually becomes pregnant. And in many species of fish, it is the father who nourishes, protects, and cares for the young. After reading of the tremendous variety and flexibility in parenting strategies across species, the reader will reconsider before ever again making an argument on the basis of nature. Nature, including the phenomenon of parenting, is incredibly complex and resists human reductionistic categories. Yet, even while variety reigns, there are patterns at work as well, patterns that are both destructive and creative, and that overall seem to reflect an instinctual urge towards life as such.

With care and caution, Allport also journeys into the realm of human parenting from the Gussi of southwestern Kenya to traditional Inuit, from Pakistan to America again uncovering great variety as well as common themes in parenting. In humans, attachment, sensitivity, and endurance are key. With our young doing most of their development outside the body, and at such a slow rate compared to most species, long-term devotion is crucial if the younger generation is to survive, thrive, and learn the ways of the elder generation in a dangerous and predatory world. On the one hand, Allport describes how, evolutionarily speaking, love itself has emerged, and its key role in parenting. On the other hand, she reminds us of the often horrifying ways humans, like other animals, are themselves dangerous toward even their own. From obscene baby-formula schemes to abandonment to overt infanticide, Allport examines the evolutionary tension that exists between generations the tension between insuring one's own short-term survival and the long-term survival of one's genes. For example, the male emperor penguin will incubate a mate's egg until eighty percent of his fat reserves are burned. At that point (which is the threshold of his own ability to survive), he abandons the egg. As Allport points out, in the penguin's world it does no good to continue, for without the parent the egg would not survive either.

Like Pascal, or, before him, the author of Job, this book gives us a glimpse into the grandeur and the misery of existence in this case through the beauty and terror of parenting. And as Tillich or Kierkegaard might suggest, the situation of existence (here, parenting) raises questions which are ultimately theological questions of meaning, purpose, hope, transcendence, or ultimate concern.

If you have no tolerance for evolutionary explanations for behavior, you will not like this book. But if you find such an angle on existence intriguing, persuasive, or helpful a kind of theological necessary but insufficient approach to other disciplines and especially if you are a parent or concerned with parenting enjoy. It is striking that even within the evolutionary framework, love and devotion are foundational to the species.

Reviewed by J. Bradley Wigger, Louisville Presbyterian Theological Seminary, Louisville, KY 40205-1798.

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 QUEST FOR PERFECTION: The Drive to Breed Better Human Beings by Gina Maranto. New York: Scribner (Simon & Shuster), 1996. 335 pages, bibliography and index. Hardcover; $25.00.

Gina Maranto is a science journalist whose writings have appeared in a variety of publications, including the Atlantic Monthly and Scientific American. Quest for Perfection is her first book.

The well-chosen title of Maranto's book appropriately summarizes the theme which underlies the historically and topically diverse sections contained within it. Quest for Perfection refers to the tendency of human beings at all times and in all places, it seems to understand, control, and improve upon what nature has equipped us for as far as conception and birth are concerned. In fashioning an argument which proclaims that humanity's desire to improve upon the species is an impulse with ancient roots that continues to find modern expression, Maranto juxtaposes contemporary headlines announcing the latest advances in reproductive technology with historical references as varied as the exposure practices of the Egyptians, Greeks, and Romans, to the rassenhygiene fanaticism of Nazi Germany. She also draws upon an array of anthropological evidence concerning the practice of infanticide to add additional weight to the argument that our penchant for controlling and modifying birth outcomes is both widespread and deeply rooted. The central message of the book is that nothing much has changed throughout human history, except the technological means at our disposal, which permit an increasing degree of control over the reproductive process.

The reproductive technologies of today echo the eugenic schemes of this and the last century, which in turn echo the scientific and theological musings of the Middle Ages regarding conception and birth, which echo the utopian visions of Greece and Rome. Quest for Perfection provides a compelling argument that the quest to control our genetic destiny has been a constant in history; from the ancient and comparatively crude practices associated with infanticide, to the modern, sanitized, and sophisticated techniques associated with assisted reproduction, embryonic manipulation, and the Human Genome Project. It is the power and sophistication of today's technologies that have raised and expanded the levels of debate concerning the ethical and political implications of such tinkering, but the desire to tinker with human destiny is not new.

Throughout history, humans have devised a variety of methods and a variety of rationalizations to facilitate the elimination of the undesirable and unwanted amongst them; just as they have devised methods and rationalizations for creating the desirable and the wanted. The quest for perfection has been largely fueled by our penchant for seeking biomedical fixes for socioeconomic problems. Again and again we are reminded of the role played by the larger social context the influences of politics, religion, science, and technology in the service of this quest. Therein, of course, lies the rub. Science, religion, and philosophy provide us with visions of perfection and we employ the means at our disposal to strive toward that goal, but we appear to have absorbed little of the lessons of history in the process. The quest for perfection would doubtless be considered a noble enterprise if we could be certain of the existence (and attainability) of such a reality in any objective sense. We do not, and so are left, it seems, with continually defining that brave new world for ourselves. As history clearly demonstrates, our track record in this respect has all too frequently been less than noble.

Quest for Perfection is not a book of answers, nor does it aspire to be one. It explores and challenges a wide variety of issues historical, technological, and ethical surrounding the eugenic impulse and does so with a narrative skill that makes for intellectually satisfying and compelling reading. Maranto has crafted a thoughtful and thought-provoking book which represents science journalism at its best. For a topic about which so much, and by so many, has been written, one would be hard-pressed to recommend a more passionate or compassionate treatment than this.

Reviewed by Janice Drodge, Assistant Professor of Anthropology, University College of Cape Breton, Sydney, NS, Canada B1P 6L2.

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MODELS FOR CHRISTIAN HIGHER EDUCATION: Strategies for Success in the Twenty-First Century by Richard T. Hughes and William B. Adrian, Eds. Grand Rapids: Eerdmans Publishing Co., 1997. 461 and x pages. Paperback; $30.00.

In the introduction Hughes asks: How is it possible for Christian institutions of higher learning to develop in academic institutions of the first order and, at the same time, to nurture in creative ways the faith commitments that called these institutions into existence in the first place? Hughes notes that many colleges and universities in the United States started as Christian institutions but abandoned their Christian orientations in the interest of a purely Enlightenment-based search for truth. On the other hand, some colleges cling so tightly to an a priori Christian worldview that it places limits on the search for truth. This clinging to an a priori Christian worldview may be done in two ways. Some insist on a so-called literal reading of the Bible. Others say God gave the revelation in nature first and base their philosophy of learning on a combination of their findings in studying nature and the Bible. They do take the Bible seriously but believe that the Bible gives us the story of salvation, written in a language understandable for people living in the time when the prophets lived. The editors asked, What are the results of these different approaches? They answer this question by asking how Christian institutions of higher learning deal with it. Hughes identified seven faith traditions in the introduction. A knowledgeable person discusses the history and present state of each tradition. Then follows a discussion of two institutions in that tradition.

The book discusses, in the Roman Catholic tradition, the University of Portland and St. John's University. In the Lutheran tradition, they chose California Lutheran University College and Saint Olaf College. For the Reformed tradition, they selected Whitworth College and Calvin College. In the Mennonite tradition, the choice was Fresno Pacific College and Goshen College. The next three traditions are a bit more difficult to define, since the borderlines between them are a bit vague. For the tradition they call the Evangelical/Interdenominational, they chose Seattle Pacific University and Wheaton College. In the Wesleyan/Holiness tradition, they selected Point Loma Nazarene College and Messiah College. The seventh tradition is Baptist/Restorationist and the choice was Pepperdine University and Samford University. Some of these institutions started in one tradition, but are now in another, especially the interdenominational ones.

The introduction to each tradition is interesting because it gives a short history of that particular tradition in the United States and its approach, often a changing one, toward Christian higher education. Different traditions give different answers to questions like: How do we integrate faith and science in our life and in our studies? Can we work toward such integration? The book makes us aware of why some colleges cease being Christian.

Since twenty-seven authors wrote chapters, some chapters are easier to read than others. I enjoyed reading the book, and recommend it to anyone interested in the future of Christian education and scholarship.

Reviewed by Jan de Koning, 20 Crispin Crescent, Willowdale, ON, Canada M2R 2V7.

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 ALL GOD'S CHILDREN: A Biblical Critique of Racism by Stephen L. McKenzie. Louisville, KY: Westminster John Knox Press, 1997. 132 pages. Paperback.

McKenzie is Associate Professor of Old Testament at Rhodes College in Memphis, Tennessee. It is the purpose of this book to emphasize not only that the Bible cannot properly be used to defend racist beliefs and practices, but that its true message leads away from the divisions associated with racism to a God-ordained diversity-in-unity. The author treats a number of situations based on the Old Testament in nine chapters, and on the New Testament in the final four chapters. It is probably the author's own area of specialization that leads him to devote as much space as he does to the Old Testament, where hermeneutical analysis of the text relevant to his subject is often required. By contrast, the New Testament passages appear to be very clear and need little additional elucidation.

Old Testament topics covered include: (1) the creation story in Genesis 2 and 3, which embraces the idea of equality and fraternity between all people, regardless of race; (2) the curse on Ham from Genesis 9, which had been inappropriately invoked by southern Christians before the Civil War to legitimize black slavery; (3) the tower of Babel in Genesis 11, the separations following which were caused by sin, not racism; (4) several events in the life of Abraham in Genesis 12-26, in which Abraham got into trouble because he unnecessarily feared the other ; (5) the teaching of the election of a specific people, which goes along with the revelation of God's final goal in universal blessing; (6) the holy war in Deuteronomy, in which God's command to the Israelites to conquer and annihilate the Canaanites is seen to be religious rather than ethnic in motivation, and the description of these events by the author(s) of Deuteronomy is given to promote religious purity at a time when there were still many Canaanites living in the land; (7) the Israel that Moses led out of Egypt, which was not an ethnic unity even Moses' own wife was not an Israelite by ethnic background; (8) Joshua's account, which shows that the complete destruction of the Canaanites was impossible, and ultimately undesirable; (9) Rahab, who was a one-time Canaanite prostitute, but played a key role in Israel's conquest of the land, and also played a role in the ancestry of Christ himself; (10) the citizens of Gibeon, who were still predominantly ethnic Canaanites; (11) many individuals in the Bible stories about David who are members of non-Israelite ethnic groups; (12) three of the five women mentioned in Matthew's genealogy of Christ who were non-Israelites: Tamar and Rahab were Canaanites, and Ruth was a Moabite; (13) issues involving marriage between Jews and non-Jews as set forth in Ezra and Nehemiah, with possible responses and clarification in Chronicles and Malachi; (14) important books of the Bible which were written by non-Israelites: Job, much of Proverbs, and Ecclesiastes; (15) Jonah which is a book against prejudice and advocating the love of God for all people; (16) Isaiah 11, for example, which stresses the goal of harmony among different people, whereas Christian theology has often emphasized Avertical relationships with God rather than horizontal ones between people.

New Testament topics covered include: (1) Luke's emphasis that Jesus' ministry was to all people, including those socially considered outcasts; (2) the Parable of the Good Samaritan, which explicitly counters the kind of prejudice found in racism; (3) the first Gentile convert to Christ, who according to Acts, was a black man; (4) physical features, such as skin color, wholeness of body, or health, do not influence one's acceptability before God; (5) the mission to the Gentiles beginning with the conversion of Saul; (6) the welcome of God for all people, including their diversity; (7) the strong case made against segregation among Christian churches in the desire to follow the command of Christ that all should be one in him, that indeed it is specifically through this union that the witness of Christians will reach out to others; (8) the story of the encounter between Jesus and the Samaritan woman in John 4 as a striking example of how Jesus ignored ethnic and religious prejudice; (9) The theology of the Gospel of John and the letter of I John offer a significant challenge to the segregation of churches along racial lines as is commonly practiced in this country ; (10) the continuing clear call from St. Paul, especially in Romans 9-11, Galatians, and I Corinthians 12:12-30.

The message of this section is: There is no doctrine of segregation in the New Testament. Its credo is not Aseparate but equal ; it is different but united. It could be well used in a context where Christians recognize the call to exhibit their unity and are willing to begin the difficult task of overcoming traditional ethnic or racial separations.

This book treats an important topic for the life of the Christian church today. It could well be used as a background text for study and/or action groups. It would be even more effective if it could be used with a multi-ethnic, multi-racial Christian group.

Reviewed by Richard H. Bube, Professor Emeritus of Materials Science and Electrical Engineering, Stanford University, Stanford, CA 94305.

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 THE OUTRAGEOUS IDEA OF CHRISTIAN SCHOLARSHIP by George M. Marsden. New York/Oxford: Oxford University Press, 1997. 142 pages. Paperback; $22.00.n

In many academic circles it is unacceptable to have religious perspectives used in scholarship and debate. But Marsden has argued previously (in The Soul of the American University) that religious perspectives are legitimate. In this book, he offers positive guidelines about what he means. The argument should appeal to the broad community of scholars who do not think in this way and do not want to, and to Christians who would like to know what Christian scholarship might mean. Because there has been a long period in which religion, he suggests, has been trivialized in the academy, religious thought and argument need to be justified.

Marsden writes cogently from a deep understanding of the history of developments in the modern academy (reviewed here, but tested at length in his previous book). This book can be recommended to both non-Christian and Christian colleagues. Many readers of this journal (which is mentioned in the book's appendix as an example of a significant journal in support of a Christian academic organization) will find it helpful in crystallizing and expressing their own commitment to Christian scholarship.

Reviewed by David T. Barnard, Vice-President (Administration), University of Regina, Regina, Saskatchewan, Canada S4S OA2.

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TRANSFORMED THINKING: Loving God with All Your Mind by Edward M. Curtis with John Brugaletta. Franklin, TN: JKO Publishing Inc., 1996. 200 pages, index. Paperback; $12.95.

Transformed Thinking is an excellent contribution to the current debate on the evangelical mind. In nine chapters the book explores integrating general and special revelation, understanding the spirit of our age, and developing a Christian mind. The text is lucid and contains several discussion questions at the end of each chapter that make the book useful as a textbook. In fact, Curtis developed this book as a text for Biola University's adult degree program.

The first two chapters are foundational for the book's theme, developing a Christian mind. The authors begin by showing that knowledge is acquired in four basic ways: through empiricism, reason, intuition and faith (p. 13), using familiar examples to illustrate both the principles and limitations of each learning method. Then they move to how worldviews affect learning, by creating unconscious and conscious bias. By using illustrations from theology and the social sciences, they build a strong case showing how the spirit-of-our-age has infiltrated many areas of thought, including some evangelical theology.

In chapter 3 on Modernity and chapter 4 on Postmodernism, Curtis and Brugaletta expand on the Aspirit-of-our-age and the challenge to Christian thinking. They successfully separate the nuggets of these issues from the dross and achieve a succinct, and very readable, summary of Modernity and Postmodernism. Also, these chapters stress both the benefits and pitfalls of Modernity and Postmodernism, with suggestions on how Christians can use the positive elements to their advantage.

Chapter five marks something of a transition from the first four chapters, showing how to develop a Christian mind first in special revelation (chaps. 5-7) and then in general revelation (chaps. 8-9). The chapters on special revelation use many examples from Old Testament theology, which is the author's specialty, though most ASA members will probably find the discussion on general revelation more useful. This last half of the book (chaps. 5-9) gives the reader impetus to strive for humility while seeking truth and understanding by thinking God's thoughts after him. For example:

While the example of Job clearly illustrates the way experience can bring people to a clearer understanding of reality, including truth about the way God works in the world, it is also important to recognize that experience, especially individual experience, is subject to several problems that often make it a problematic indicator of truth. First of all, there is no guarantee that our experience is typical and thus indicates what others could normally experience in a similar situation. Secondly, our experiences are always subject to interpretation, and often there is great uncertainty as to the meaning and significance of our experience as exemplified by the debate between Job and his friends (p. 147).

This is an excellent book that is intended for people who are serious about both their thinking and their faith (preface) in other words, all ASA members! The progression from epistemology to worldview to special and general revelation illustrates how the authors have striven to love God with all your mind, which is the book's subtitle. Developing a Christian mind is a difficult task. Few books get further than identifying the problem, and then fail to help others think Christianly. These authors have compiled an excellent resource that is invaluable for leading classes on the Christian mind.

Reviewed by Fraser F. Fleming, Assistant Professor of Chemistry, Duquesne University, Pittsburgh, PA 15282.

From PSCF 50 (June 1998): 154.