Charles Darwin and Politics: Very Gradual Change We Can Believe In?


I saw the above image at Andrew Sullivan’s blog today. Clever. And it’s working on a number of levels: as an ironic poke at creationists, of course. And as a substitute of one cultural star (Obama) for another cultural star (Darwin). But it can also be read as a curiously implicit endorsement of Obama-like gradualism and conservatism in politics.


Darwinian theory carrying conservative implications? Tell it to Nietzsche.

And it might also be read as questioning Obama-like gradualism. Perhaps the poster is suggesting that the only kind of slow change we should believe in is in nature, not necessarily in our politics.

In any case, it’s interesting that the evolution by natural selection “metaphor”—as the above image illustrates—can be read as justification for all sorts of politics (and has).

About Santi Tafarella

I teach writing and literature at Antelope Valley College in California.
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4 Responses to Charles Darwin and Politics: Very Gradual Change We Can Believe In?

  1. TomH says:

    I think that it’s politial saltation. 😉

    Or maybe health care [sic] reform is a kind of ‘hopeful monster.”

    Quelle surprise–politics as paleontological metaphor.

  2. santitafarella says:


    My bet is this monster will eat the Republican Party. And that makes me hopeful.


  3. Pingback: Very Gradual Change We Can Believe In | Escape To New York

  4. Pingback: VFYW Contest: Readers On The Trail - Sensemaking Today

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