Wednesday, September 12, 2007

Taking Dawkins to task

Adam Roberts provides a more complex, nuanced review of Richard Dawkins' much hyped and somewhat simplistic book, The Fascism Delusion.

... Though he accuses Fascism of being an extremism; he flatly refuses to acknowledge the extremist bias of his own non-Fascist position. He is also blind to the obvious truth that his beloved non-Fascists have killed just as many people as have Fascists—more, indeed. Why doesn’t Dawkins focus his polemic on them? The reason is that a peculiar hysterical hostility to the very idea of Fascism blinds him. (He claims for instance that ‘non-Fascists don’t do evil in the name of non-Fascism’, which would be news to all the senior Fascists hanged by the Nuremberg anti-Fascist trials). All ideals – political, transcendent, human, or invented – are capable of being abused. And knowing this, we need to work out what to do about it, rather than lashing out uncritically at Fascism. But Dawkins cannot understand this.

Read it all here (and don't forget to scan some of the comments - dumb or what?)

Hat tip Will - again - bless


Read in conjunction with Tristram Hunt on ‘the new atheist orthodoxy‘.

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