Outspoken atheist Professor Richard Dawkins is to warn children of the dangers in believing "anti-scientific" fairytales such as Harry Potter.Now, in fairness to Professor Dawkins, it does seem as though the journalist is exaggerating his objections to Harry Potter and fairy stories and so on... However, it's interesting that Dawkins seems to be entertaining the suspicion that the stories he heard as a child might have had a negative effect on his rationality.
Prof Dawkins will write a book aimed at youngsters where he will discuss whether stories like the successful JK Rowling series have a "pernicious" effect on children.
The 67-year-old, who recently resigned from his position at Oxford University, says he intends to look at the effects of "bringing children up to believe in spells and wizards".
'I think it is anti-scientific – whether that has a pernicious effect, I don't know,' he told More4 News.
'Looking back to my own childhood, the fact that so many of the stories I read allowed the possibility of frogs turning into princes, whether that has a sort of insidious affect on rationality, I'm not sure. Perhaps it's something for research.'
However, the outspoken atheist said he hadn't even read Harry Potter and admitted he "didn't know what to think about magic and fairytales".
Saturday, October 25, 2008
The Atheist Objection to Harry Potter
I'm sure we've all come across Christians of various stripes who object to the Harry Potter books, but I was amused to see that prominent atheist Richard Dawkins also finds them objectionable: