Wednesday, April 25, 2007
A Brief History of Disbelief
Update: We've removed the slow-loading embed of Episode 1 of Jonathan Miller's inspiring BBC television program "A Brief History of Disbelief," and replaced it with a shorter, faster loading YouTube of Episode 1 Part 1.
This is the best thing we've seen yet on skepticism and we strongly recommend watching all three hour-long episodes. Here are the links:
In the sidebar, check out the excerpt titled Myth of a Christian Nation from Episode 1.
We were tipped off to "A Brief History of Disbelief," which will air on selected PBS stations in early May, by PZ Myers Pharyngula blog.
RSR also recommends Doubt: A History: The Great Doubters and Their Legacy of Innovation from Socrates and Jesus to Thomas Jefferson and Emily Dickinson by Jennifer Michael Hecht.
"Hecht's poetical prose beautifully dramatizes the struggle between belief and denial, in terms of historical currents and individual wrestlings with the angel," says Publishers Weekly. "Doubt is revealed to be the subtle stirring that has precipitated many of the more widely remembered innovations in politics, religion and science, such as medieval Jewish philosopher Gersonides's doubt of Ptolemaic cosmology 200-300 years before Copernicus, Kepler or Galileo. The breadth of this work is stunning in its coverage of nearly all extant written history."