10 August 2007

A trip to the bookstore

My fiancée Sara and I happened to be in the vicinity of Border's in downtown Boston today, so we took a bit of a browse. (Sadly, I didn't have my camera with me... I would have liked pictures of what's to follow.)

I took a little wander over to the Science section, and sure enough there were three copies of Behe's "The Edge of Evolution" nestled in the biology section. Inspired by Biologists Helping Bookstores, Sara and I helpfully relocated Behe's books to a prominent shelf in the Christian Fiction section. He's nestled between two books with pretty ladies on their covers, I'm sure he can't be too upset.

I've seen some mention online that bookstores are starting to set up whole displays dedicated to atheism. Well, I'm sorry to say that this Borders had a bittersweet offering for us. There was a shelf dedicated to atheism in the religion section, and there was an aisle display nearby much like the one depicted in the link above. But this aisle display was labeled "assault on faith," hardly a positive spin. Furthermore, their selection of books (or rather, a book) was atrocious. Sure, they had plenty of copies of Hitchens' god is not Great, a bunch of Harris' The End of Faith, and a couple of Dawkins' The God Delusion toward the bottom. But topping the display were several shiny black copies of Alister McGrath's joke of a book, The Dawkins Delusion. I can't imagine how that book found its way on the display; from the scathing critiques I've read, The Dawkins Delusion is one strawman argument after another, completely failing to honestly address Dawkins' arguments.

I didn't know what to do with the McGrath book on display; I wanted to reshelve it, but something told me reshelving it in the only proper place (the trash can) would have gotten me in trouble. So we just obscured a stack of the books with a copy of I Sold My Soul on eBay that Sara had been browsing. Hemant's book is hardly an assault on faith, but maybe it will give someone pause to reconsider how they choose to advertise their books.

I think maybe tomorrow I'll have to check to see how some of the bookstores in Cambridge are handling the atheist literature.

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