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"The Origin of Species" was the birth of an idea that reshaped our view of humanity and our place in the universe. This episode tracks Charles Darwin's life, and reveals that, surprisingly, Darwin at first chose not to publish until after his death, for fear of retaliation from both Church and the wider culture. We also follow the voyage of he Beagle, and we learn how Darwin's theories have been used for the advancement of science and as a justification for outrageous acts.
The Great Books series was a standout on cable TV in the 1990s - a highly entertaining yet educational survey of great works of world literature.