There is no doubt that the idea of Darwinian Evolution revolutionized modern scientific thinking, with his extensive experience studying wildlife in the Galapagos Islands, and his subsequent conclusions on natural selection and descent with modification. When we think of evolution, we think of the scientist who brought this concept to light in the 19th century, Charles Darwin.

The response to Darwin’s ideas in the scientific community was not all-accepting– many scientists  including Lord Kelvin led the scientific opposition to his ideas of natural selection and gradualism. Although Darwin had the comprehensive backing to support his argument, many scientists still rejected his conclusions from his work on the islands. Though this occurred over a century ago, it shows how society is naturally resistant to new ideas and changes in thinking, a pressing issue in contemporary times, both from a political and scientific standpoint, for example flat-earth believers and climate change deniers.

In the class setting today, we may interpret or view the scientists who rejected the idea of Darwinian Evolution as unintelligent and close-minded, but I believe we must bear in mind that you first must look through the situation in a historical context, but also see that there are parallels to these conditions in today’s times. Even decades after Darwin’s findings, we saw that the idea of biological evolution was unaccepted in the high school classroom through the Scopes trial in the 1920’s, but society has a tendency to change with the times, as did the idea of evolution.

Through this, we understand that change in scientific thinking and its perception comes with time and further discovery. Evolution is now taught in every biology curriculum throughout the world, a thought that could not be fathomed just a century ago. Science and society are most definitely intertwined, however one will usually progress at a different rate than the other. A good portion of thinkers today deny the existence of relatively recent scientific discoveries such as the effects of climate change, but we may look back on this a hundred years from now in a different perspective, just as we did with Darwin’s work.