The Root Of All Evil? Richard Dawkins

Part One

Part Two

The Root of All Evil? is a television documentary, written and presented by Richard Dawkins, in which he argues that the world would be better off without religion.

The documentary was first broadcast in January 2006, in the form of two 45-minute episodes (excluding advertisement breaks), on Channel 4 in the UK.

Dawkins has said that the title “The Root of All Evil?” was not his preferred choice, but that Channel 4 had insisted on it to create controversy.[1] His sole concession from the producers on the title was the addition of the question mark. Dawkins has stated that the notion of anything being the root of all evil is ridiculous.[2] Dawkins’s book The God Delusion, released in September 2006, goes on to examine the topics raised in the documentary in greater detail.

In The Virus of Faith, Dawkins opines that the moral framework of religions is warped, and argues against the religious indoctrination of children. The title of this episode comes from The Selfish Gene, in which Dawkins discussed the concept of memes.

Don’t like Dawkins, don’t like Dawkins, don’t like Dawkins.. *Yawn* .. Don’t like Dawkins, don’t like Dawkins, don’t like …

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Filed under: Culture, History, Humanity, Philosophy, Politics, Psychology, UK

2 Responses

  1. extremepress says:

    Even though Richard Dawkins is not everyones cup of tea and tends to have BBCesque narrative to his documentary the general idea still remain(radical) pertinent today as it was 2000 years ago. Atheism tends to go against human nature in the sense that it negates all human aspirations of there being something beyond humans themselves. We all aspire that there is something greater than us in some sense. Without which we revert to nihilism. So pertinent that publishers of Richard Dawkins book ‘The God Delusion’ is being prosecuted in Turkey today. An affront to human aspiration? An assault on religious dogmas? interesting none the less and still radical today as it was in yesteryear.

  2. Ed says:

    Agreed. And the dangers of nihilism go far beyond the psychological. The main problem I have with Dawkins’ book “The God Delusion” is that at the very beginning he quotes the (oft, even tired) dialogue from Shakespeare: “There are more things between heaven and earth than are dreamt of in your philosophy, Horatio” [paraphrased]. He then immediately, with no leaps or bounds whatsoever, makes the statement that an omniscient intelligence cannot exist without even defining his terms! He tends to prattle on as though people really believe there is a man in a white beard controlling everything: I find this incredibly difficult to accept as the premise of a supposedly high-brow attempt at critique-ing religion. Frankly, it’s nauseatingly pathetic and is misleading pseudo-intellectuals (like myself, have no doubt) en masse into, as you rightly say, a dangerous nihilism that will, before long, have us barcoded and racked up in some dystopian Nazi-esque enugenicist future beyond imagining. The man is, in my eyes, dangerously incapable of lateral or conceptual thought, thus ignorant, and appallingly arrogant. His lecture on ‘middle world’ left me aghast at how somebody can basically rip-off centuries-old Platonic principles as their own in some Tolkeinesque hobbit-infested palimpest of watered-down intellectualism. Having said this, at least he is bringing important debate to the table. But, frankly, if you’re willing to put your name to a program called The Root Of All Evil (thanks for that Channel 4: you f’ing dickheads) and only just managed to squeeze a question mark on the end, you must seriously consider whether you are doing more harm than good through your own quest for – well, what? Notoriety? Fame? Or educative philanthropy? A heady mixture of all, I’m inclined to feel.

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I'm a Media and Communications graduate from Goldsmiths College, London, a Project Manager and Web Developer (C#, PHP). In my spare time I like to write fiction, music, and read current affairs.

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