In the beginning, the solar system revolved around the earth, and humanity was carved from clay and bone—plopped, as it were, perfectly formed into a populated garden. Origin stories are, however, meant to be rewritten, and the reformation of central, essential ideas about the nature of things meant and means challenging powerful ideologies and institutions..
International Darwin Day will inspire people throughout the globe to reflect and act on the principles of intellectual bravery, perpetual curiosity, scientific thinking and hunger for truth as embodied in Charles Darwin. It will be a day of celebration, activism, and international cooperation for the advancement of science, education, and human well-being. Local and state governments will close in commemoration of the Day, and organizations and businesses will celebrate by engaging in community outreach centered around science as a tool for the betterment of humanity. Darwin Day will be observed by the United Nations and its members as an opportunity for international partnerships through the common language of science for the common good of all.
On the Origin of the Celebration
1909, on the 100th anniversary of his birth, large celebrations honoring Darwin’s contributions to science and humanity were held in Cambridge, New York and New Zealand. The University of Chicago commemorated the 100th anniversary of the publication of On the Origin of Species in 1959 with a series of notable events from November 24 through the 28th. The 200th anniversary of Darwin’s birth saw an entire season of BBC programming on Charles Darwin himself as well as evolution and natural selection. Salem State University has successfully held an annual Darwin Festival since 1980.
The organized movement to establish an annual International Darwin Day Celebration began with three Darwin enthusiasts: Dr. Robert Stephens, who motivated the Humanist Community in Silicon Valley to initiate an annual Darwin Day Celebration in 1995; Prof. Massimo Pigliucci, who similarly organized annual Darwin Day events at the University of Tennessee beginning in 1997; and Amanda Chesworth, who joined Stephens to officially incorporate the Darwin Day Program in New Mexico in 2000.
The mission of International Darwin Day as mentioned above is to inspire people throughout the globe to reflect and act on the principles of intellectual bravery, perpetual curiosity, scientific thinking and hunger for truth as embodied in Charles Darwin. Let’s hope that more and more people get inspired and enable humanity to progress for a better and brighter future.