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Theology

A review of The Dawkins Delusion? By Alister McGrath

A review of The Dawkins Delusion? By Alister McGrath. SPCK, 2007.

The God Delusion by veteran theophobe Richard Dawkins has caused no small stir since being released late last year. It was a wild slugfest by the Oxford atheist and biologist, taking on most types of religion and belief in God. Many reviewers, even fellow secularists, found the book both embarrassing and sophomoric in its intolerant attack on religion and all who dared to disagree with him.

In this book, the first of two full-length critiques of the work to appear (the other is Deluded by Dawkins, by Andrew Wilson), a fellow Oxford professor weighs into the fray. McGrath has PhDs in both theology and molecular biophysics. Thus he is more than qualified to discuss Dawkins. In fact he may be more qualified than Dawkins to speak on the subject matter of this particular book. When Dawkins sticks to his strong suit, evolutionary biology, he can claim expertise. But when he wades into philosophy and theology, he quickly demonstrates that he is way out of his depth.

And because theology and philosophy made up the bulk of his 400-page polemic, McGrath finds it to be an intellectually lightweight affair. Instead of a well-reasoned, sustained and coherent argument for his case, the book is just a collection of cheap pot shots, rehashed and tired atheist arguments, and overheated polemics.

There exists much more competent atheist argumentation. The late atheist Stephen Jay Gould at least tried to stick to the evidence in his discussions, but Dawkins

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