“The number of intermediate varieties which have formerly existed on earth must be truly enormous. Why then is not every geological formation and every stratum full of such intermediate links? Geology assuredly does not reveal any such finely graduated organic chain; and this, perhaps, is the most obvious and gravest objection which can be urged against my theory.” – Charles Darwin 1902 edition.
The luxury of being a “cultural” historian is that you may exclude yourself from those inconvenient rules of historical accuracy that get in the way of your story. Not only has McCalman given himself a blanket dispensation from the rules of history but he also seems to have been granted a plenary indulgence from the laws of science since it is apparent from his first word to his last that he believes in Darwin’s theory, hook, line and sinker. The problem, of course, is that it deprives him of any sort of objectivity and reduces him from historian to cheerleader.
Darwin may be the end of the “enlightenment” because at the same time he was positing the ultimate explanation for a planet in no need of a Creator his contemporary, Karl Marx, was laying the groundwork for the social expression of Darwinism and the nihilists were giving vent to the philosophical expression that would become the basis of the “theology” of the 20th century. The introduction of cannibalism coupled with euthanasia practiced by a society that celebrated child sacrifice and the absence of any moral decency could not have been more harmful – and on reflection that is about what we have wound up with!
Just so that you do not feel compelled to believe every piece of nonsense issued by the pseudo-scientific community that has sprung up around Darwin’s nonsense we have appended a few quotes from some who do not feel compelled to accept his “theory” as fact to the end if this review and you can find even more and better information at the Northwest Network.
Darwin’s armada : four voyages and the battle for the theory of evolution New York : W.W. Norton & Co., 2009 Iain McCalman Evolution (Biology) History 19th century Hardcover. 1st. ed. and printing. 422 p.,  p. of plates : ill. (some col.), maps ; 25 cm. Includes bibliographical references and index. Clean, tight and strong binding with clean dust jacket. No highlighting, underlining or marginalia in text. VG/VG
Cultural historian Iain McCalman tells the stories of Charles Darwin and his most vocal supporters and colleagues: Joseph Hooker, Thomas Huxley, and Alfred Wallace. Beginning with the somber morning of April 26, 1882 – the day of Darwin’s funeral – Darwin’s Armada steps back in time and recounts the lives and scientific discoveries of each of these explorers. The four amateur naturalists voyaged separately from Britain to the southern hemisphere in search of adventure and scientific fame. From Darwin’s inaugural trip on the Beagle in 1835 through Wallace’s exploits in the Amazon and, later, Malaysia in the 1840s and 1850s, each man independently made discoveries that led him to embrace Darwin’s groundbreaking theory of evolution. This book reveals the untold story of Darwin’s greatest supporters who, during his life, campaigned passionately in the war of ideas over evolution and who lived on to extend and advance the scope of his work.
“…I am quite conscious that my speculations run beyond the bounds of true science….It is a mere rag of an hypothesis with as many flaw[s] & holes as sound parts.” Charles Darwin to Asa Gray, cited by Adrian Desmond and James Moore, Darwin, (New York: W.W. Norton and Company, 1991) pp. 456, 475.
“Nowhere was Darwin able to point to one bona fide case of natural selection having actually generated evolutionary change in nature….Ultimately, the Darwinian theory of evolution is no more nor less than the great cosmogenic myth of the twentieth century.” Michael Denton, Evolution: A Theory in Crises (Bethesda, Maryland: Adler & Adler, 1986) pp. 62, 358.
“I believe that one day the Darwinian myth will be ranked the greatest deceit in the history of science.” Søren Løvtrup, Darwinism: The Refutation of a Myth (New York: Croom Helm, 1987), p. 422.
“Scientists who go about teaching that evolution is a fact of life are great con-men, and the story they are telling may be the greatest hoax ever. In explaining evolution, we do not have one iota of fact.” Dr. T. N. Tahmisian Evolution and the Emperor’s New Clothes by N.J. Mitchell (United Kingdom: Roydon Publications, 1983), title page.
“The Darwinian theory of descent has not a single fact to confirm it in the realm of nature. It is not the result of scientific research, but purely the product of imagination.” Albert Fleischmann. Witnesses Against Evolution by John Fred Meldau (Denver: Christian Victory Publishing, 1968), p. 13.
“[T]he theory suffers from grave defects, which are becoming more and more apparent as time advances. It can no longer square with practical scientific knowledge, nor does it suffice for our theoretical grasp of the facts…No one can demonstrate that the limits of a species have ever been passed. These are the Rubicons which evolutionists cannot cross…Darwin ransacked other spheres of practical research work for ideas…But his whole resulting scheme remains, to this day, foreign to scientifically established zoology, since actual changes of species by such means are still unknown.” Albert Fleischmann, “The Doctrine of Organic Evolution in the Light of Modern Research,” Journal of the Transactions of the Victoria Institute 65 (1933): pp. 194-95, 205-6, 208-9.
“Evolutionism is a fairy tale for grown-ups. This theory has helped nothing in the progress of science. It is useless.” Louis Bounoure. The Advocate, 8 March 1984, p. 17.
“And the salient fact is this: if by evolution we mean macroevolution (as we henceforth shall), then it can be said with the utmost rigor that the doctrine is totally bereft of scientific sanction. Now, to be sure, given the multitude of extravagant claims about evolution promulgated by evolutionists with an air of scientific infallibility, this may indeed sound strange. And yet the fact remains that there exists to this day not a shred of bona fide scientific evidence in support of the thesis that macroevolutionary transformations have ever occurred.” Wolfgang Smith, Teilhardism and the New Religion (Rockford., Ill.: Tan Books, 1988), pp. 5-6. Dr. Smith, taught at MIT and UCLA.
“With the failure of these many efforts, science was left in the somewhat embarrassing position of having to postulate theories of living origins which it could not demonstrate. After having chided the theologian for his reliance on myth and miracle, science found itself in the inevitable position of having to create a mythology of its own: namely, the assumption that what, after long effort could not prove to take place today had, in truth, taken place in the primeval past.” Loren Eisley, The Immense Journey (1957), p. 199.
“If complex organisms ever did evolve from simpler ones, the process took place contrary to the laws of nature, and must have involved what may rightly be termed the miraculous.” R.E.D. Clark, Victoria Institute (1943), p.
” `Creation,’ in the ordinary sense of the word, is perfectly conceivable. I find no difficulty in conceiving that, at some former period, this universe was not in existence, and that it made its appearance in six days (or instantaneously, if that is preferred), in consequence of the volition of some preexisting Being. Then, as now, the so-called a priori arguments against Theism and, given a Deity, against the possibility of creative acts, appeared to me to be devoid of reasonable foundation.” Thomas H. Huxley, quoted in *L. Huxley, Life and Letters of Thomas Henry Huxley, Vol. I (1903), p. 241 (1903). 63.
“Our theory of evolution has become . . one which cannot be refuted by any possible observations. Every conceivable observation can be fitted into it . . No one can think of ways in which to test it. Ideas wither without basis or based on a few laboratory experiments carried out in extremely simplified systems, have attained currency far beyond their validity. They have become part of an evolutionary dogma accepted by most of us as part of our training.” L.C. Birch and *P. Ehrlich, Nature, April 22, 1967.
“What is at stake is not the validity of the Darwinian theory itself, but of the approach to science that it has come to represent. The peculiar form of consensus the theory wields has produced a premature closure of inquiry in several branches of biology, and even if this is to be expected in `normal science,’ such a dogmatic approach does not appear healthy.” R. Brady, “Dogma and Doubt,” Biological Journal of the Linnean Society, 17:79, 96 (1982)