Unweaving the Rainbow: Science, Delusion and the Appetite for Wonder by Richard Dawkins

Unweaving the Rainbow: Science, Delusion and the Appetite for Wonder by Richard Dawkins lands on the shelves of my shop, where it will be found in my Science section.

London: Allen Lane The Penguin Press, 1998, Hardback in dust wrapper.

2nd impression. [First Edition: 1998]

From the cover: It is often argued that scientific understanding lessens our appreciation of lifes specialness. Perhaps a scientist understands natures mechanism, but what of its beauty? Newton took a prism to create an artificial rainbow, so revealing the coloured spectrum hidden in white light; at that moment, when the rainbow was properly understood, was its poetry diminished forever?

Richard Dawkins answers with a passionate No, not just for the rainbow but for all of nature. The wonder of the universe and our place in it is revealed through science in ways otherwise impossible to appreciate or imagine. Dawkins urges us to see that the desire for what is beautiful should not lead us away from the search for what is true. Still less should we be tempted towards the false refuges of pseudoscience and superstition. Whether in the analysis of starlight or sound waves, animal footprints or human DNA, the seemingly miraculous worlds that science continues to reveal should inspire rather than undermine the poetic imagination.

Richard Dawkinss previous books have established him as a leading figure in the new literature of science. This is his first book to move away from the particular task of explaining evolution. Elegant, witty and often moving, it is also his most personal and provocative book. An inspiring defence of the scientific imagination, Unweaving the Rainbow is as pleasurable and uplifting as it is timely and important.

Very Good in Very Good Dust Wrapper.

Black boards with Gilt titling to the Spine. [XIV] 336 pages. Index. Bibliography. 9½” x 6¼”.


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