James Krupa on Teaching Evolutionary Biology

Orion Managing Editor Andrew Blechman speaks with author James Krupa about the importance of teaching evolutionary biology despite the challenges of doing so. Krupa, a professor at the University of Kentucky is the author of Defending Darwin: Teaching evolution on the front lines, an article in this issue of Orion.


  1. Great to hear how you’ve mastered this challenge!

  2. Dear Sir
    I enjoyed the article, Even though I am an ID proponent, I don’t think any of us know everything for sure. I think some of your statements about evolution being fact is stretching the evidences. I think that as we continue to delve into DNA the information is definitely leaning towards design and designer. I think that there is every argument for a guided mechansim with respect to origins. The other thing I do not buy into is that given Darwin’s expectations and supported teaching in Academia it is “assumed” that the origins platform started at a biochemical level and then to a cell and on and on through gradualism and I don’t buy that given the possibility that if there is design and there must be a designer, that the whole species platform could ahve been inculcated at an across the board application, no gradualism? I understand you don’t except the premise of a guided mechansim, but one reason I moved from Evolution to a guided Mechansim is because of evidences. Given the advances in DNA study I believe we may both have answers in the next 5 to 10 years to some of these questions that for some may seem blurred. Good luck in your endeavors….

  3. In case you have not noticed this past quarter century has seen two distinct movements in the society. One is the High teck revolution, comprising of people who are not scientists ,but love computers,, they are protectionist of the concrete world. The other are those who believe in the abstractions of the scientific model and progress the society. If you don’t believe in Evolution then why go and have a flu shot/?
    The science is the same.

    I think that we have bee moving onto a pre-enlightment era again with backwoods mentality which will leave us turning back the clock to pre Darwin times.

    It is incumbent on us all to Demand that our nation’s educational system move ahead and keep religion for their churches. Or inside of church based religious universities.

  4. Great stuff, Mr. Krupa. It can indeed be discouraging here in the Bible Belt, where the last vestiges of ancient superstition find one of their last strongholds on earth. But teaching the single unifying theory in all of natural science is not a choice, for nothing in biology-or indeed cosmology-makes sense apart from Darwin’s great insight. Teach it we must, and in ways which lead to a far better understanding than we see today. For it is true that we only see rejection of Evolution where it is profoundly misunderstood. The evidence is clear as a crystal goblet.

  5. Dear James : Did you get my email ?, think about this, again, we are the perfect distance from the sun any closer we burn up , any further back we freeze to death ,you tell me that’s by random chance and not by some super intellect and desighn ?, and we are the only planet capable of supporting life , it’s not about intelligence figuring out theirs a God but simple reasoning , theirs a difference , were’s the transitional fossil , a cat become a dog etc?, their is none ,their is changes within species but no transitional .

    Finally it’s like this believing all this came about by chance is like believing the dictionary came about by an explosion in a printing press I’m laughing so hard .

    Yours Truly
    bible bill

  6. You say, within this generally excellent article,

    ” …natural and sexual selection are the mechanisms that drive evolution”

    Stuart A Newman will tell you several other mechanisms obtain (and will say or imply that they amount, all told, to a complete explanation). The point is that even his half-dozen mechanisms fail (owing to category confusions between the types of Cause) to explain what has happened.

  7. Interesting piece. I was editorial page editor of the Lexington Herald during 1980-82 and routinely defended the teaching of evolution against encroachment from creationists on the Fayette County school board, and elsewhere — indeed, won an award for doing so. In my humble opinion, the threat of creationism being taught in public schools was much stronger then than it is now, even in a mid-South state like Kentucky.

Submit Your Comments

Please Note: Before submitting, copy your comment to your clipboard, be sure every required field is filled out, and only then submit.