Terra Sigillata

i-b443a41c9f7ff68229e1fa3e1b13de09-nw_leftnavcov_070319V2.jpgThe new issue of Newsweek (19 Mar 2007) carried a surprise for me: former Wall Street Journal health reporter, Sharon Begley, has moved back to the magazine. In fact, Begley wrote this week’s excellent discussion and cover story on the massive amount of science in support of evolution.

“The debate over human origins has been one of the most significant and controversial conversations in American society over the last 150 years. Whether they believe in Darwin’s theory of evolution as it was proposed in his “Origin of Species”, adhere to a literal interpretation of the Bible or inhabit some middle ground, Americans frequently clash over when and how humans first appeared in our current form. But NEWSWEEK’s Sharon Begley reports that emerging science shows how the story of our species may be far more complicated than anyone suspected. By analyzing the DNA of today’s humans as well as chimps and other species, scientists are zeroing in on major turning points in evolution, suggesting there may have been several more lines in the human family tree than the one that moved from monkey to man.”

Begley will also appear online today at noon EDT for a LiveTalk discussion on the topic. Questions can be submitted here.


  1. #1 jibber-jabber
    March 16, 2007

    [i]suggesting there may have been several more lines in the human family tree than the one that moved from monkey to man.”[i]

    There was a single line that moved from monkey to man? That is news to me. This introductory blurb by the editors is incredibly obnoxious in its idiocy, it seems to be written in a way to suggest that the article will offer some sort of middle ground in creationist-evolutionist exchange, “more complicated than anyone suspected,” read either side of the debate suspected. With this descent from monkeys line they seem to be offering the creationist caricature of scientists as reality, that they really think we are just a step removed from monkeys. Maybe this approach will hook some creationist into reading the article and actually considering the facts, but this sort of pandering comes off as completely unseemly for a magazine that attempts to present itself as a serious journalistic enterprise.

  2. #2 John J. Coupal
    March 17, 2007


    Newsweek has never attempted to present itself as a serious journalistic enterprise. And yes, Newsweek is the perfect place for Sharon Begley.

    The Wall Street Journal has thus improved its already excellent coverage of science and health.

  3. #3 Thomas
    August 29, 2008


    Find Pierre Tremaux

    Tremaux on species: A theory of allopatric speciation (and punctuated equilibrium) before Wagner


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