Thursday, September 29, 2011

Put the Darwin exhibit at Fernbank Museum on your to-do list

Posted By on Thu, Sep 29, 2011 at 12:11 PM

Sometimes it's easy to zone out in traffic, unaware of your surroundings. But when I found myself trailing a MARTA bus with a bright illustration posted to its backside, I couldn't help but notice. "DARWIN," the bus banner headlined, followed by "Scientist. Naturalist. Serious to do list."

That last phrase got me thinking. What kind of to-do list did Darwin have? Sure, he was a scientist committed to the "scientific method" that is all about "principles and procedures for the systematic pursuit of knowledge involving the recognition and formulation of a problem, the collection of data through observation and experiment, and the formulation and testing of hypotheses," according to Merriam Webster.

And yes, he's the founder of the theory of evolution, with much of his work based on the Galapagos Islands off the mainland of Ecuador.

And sure, Darwin's evolution work traces all life back to a common ancestor, putting forth the idea that all organisms — including different human ethnicities — are inherently related, and thus making the abolition of slavery a scientific (and moral) imperative.

But a to-do list? It seemed like such a mundane, modern idea for a historical figure at the center of incredible scientific development and global controversy.

Fernbank Museum's Darwin exhibit surely will shed light on exactly what that to-do list entailed. Including such features as live animals, fossils and an array of scientific tools Darwin used, and covering a broad range of themes relating to life and earth science, science history, geography, and the scientific process, the exhibit sounds chock-full of things visitors, especially kids, might want "to do" as well.

Check back here for updates on upcoming events related to the exhibit, including guest lectures, trivia nights and more.

Click here to register to win tickets. Free for members. $15.50-$17.50. 767 Clifton Road. 404-929-6400.

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