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Special Report

Happy 200th Birthday, Charles Darwin

The evolution of the most powerful idea in science, originated by a man who was born in Shrewsbury, England, on February 12, 1809. Here's how Darwin's theory survives, thrives and reshapes the world

  • February 11, 2009

Galapagos Invaders Actually Native Species

Fossil remains show that some plant species believed to have invaded the Galapagos islands about 500 years ago are in fact natives. Ecologists can examine fossil remains to determine what really belongs in a given habitat. Adam Hinterthuer reports

November 26, 2008

The Evolution of Evolution

Scientific American Editor in Chief John Rennie discusses the special January issue of the magazine, which focuses on evolution--2009 being the 200th anniversary of the birth of Darwin and the 150th anniversary of the publication of The Origin of Species. Subjects in the issue include the importance of natural selection, the sources of genetic variability, human evolution's past and future, pop evolutionary psychology, everyday applications of evolutionary theory, the science of the game Spore, and the ongoing threat to science education posed by creationist activists. Plus, we'll test your knowledge about some recent science in the news. Web sites related to this episode include

January 7, 2009 — Steve Mirsky

Darwin: Ghostbuster, Muse and Magistrate

Darwin historian Richard Milner shares some of the lesser known aspects of Darwin's life. And Scientific American columnist Michael Shermer talks about the stock market, religion and other belief systems. Plus, we'll test your knowledge about some recent science in the news. Web sites related to this episode include;

January 22, 2009 — Steve Mirsky

Darwin 200 years later: Evolution by selection of quotations

Editor's Note: This post is also appearing at the American Institute for Biological Sciences' Year of Science 2009: Celebrate Evolution. For more on Darwin's 200th birthday, see our January 2009 issue on evolution.

February 2, 2009 — Steve Mirsky

An Australian city named for Darwin is already celebrating his birthday

If you can’t wait until tomorrow to celebrate Charles Darwin’s 200th birthday, just call someone in Darwin, Australia. That northern Australian city, nine and a half hours ahead of Greenwich Mean Time – near Darwin’s birthplace of Shrewsbury, England – has already begun celebrating the 200th birthday of its namesake.

February 11, 2009 — Katherine Harmon

50 Years Ago: A Witness at the Scopes Trial

In 1925 a Tennessee teacher of biology named Thomas Scopes was tried for teaching the theory of evolution. An expert witness at the trial relates how evolution lost in court but won in the eyes of the nation

December 31, 2008 — Fay-Cooper Cole

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