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By Lloyd R. Bailey New York/Mahwah: Paulist Press 1993, 259 pp., $14.95
In the early 1960s I wandered into my junior high social studies class to find myself surrounded by a large mural of primates, humans and layers of rocks. By displaying that mural my teacher placed himself at professional risk within this California school district. It was a pictorial representation of human evolution. As a freshman at the local Catholic high school, my biblical faith was shaken when Sister told us that the earth had not been created in six days; I had been brought up in a somewhat fundamental, Protestant household. Yet, I never experienced these two worlds to be in contention. I was at once a Sputnik child and a biblically faithful Christian.
Later, I became aware of the political and social consequences of the conflict between proponents of evolution and creation as it played itself out during this century. As I taught high school biology I observed a dramatic change in the biology textbooks. The chapter labelled "Evolution" disappeared and the theory of evolution was suggested but never made explicit. The change had something to do, I had heard, with the political lobbying power of the "creationists" in Texas and publishers who wanted to sell textbooks.
Now, on lazy Saturday afternoons I often find myself looking for an old movie, one of those "classics." Remember Spencer Tracy and Fredric March in Inherit the Wind? Their powerful performances brought the …