In the early 1970s historians were beginning to complain about “The Darwin Industry” as being too crowded. Enough was enough, many felt, ﬁrmly believing that historians could not possibly go on saying something interesting about Darwin. Since then, historians of science working on Darwin and evolution have multiplied, bringing out new aspects, perspectives and adding to our general understanding of things that was not even anticipated forty years ago. Recently, historians have re-introduced the demise of the Darwin Industry. However, as the 2009 anniversary year ﬁrmly demonstrated, this was but wistful thinking on the part of those who thought too many books had already been published on Darwin and Darwinism, so making the end of the Darwin Industry a premature announcement. The Darwin Industry is indeed alive and well, and now includes more historians than ever. But historians are small fry by comparison to what constitute the bulk of the ‘real’ Darwin Industry that since the 1870s until present day has grown into a multimillion franchise including a wealth of products from postcards and mugs to books, teaching materials,documentaries, major ﬁlm production and myriads of websites. By 2009 the real Darwin Industry had grown into a Darwin Enterprise. It is time that we as historians take a critical look at this by seeing beyond our own scholarly niche, to get a proper perspective on what happened in 2009 and on our own contributions to the public — and scholarly — understanding of Darwin and evolution.
History of Science, 2010, Vol 48, Issue 1, p. 105-122
Charles Darwin; Evolution; Palæontologi; Videnskabsforståelse; Jubilæum; Darwinindustrien; Palaeontology; Public understanding of science; Anniversary; Darwin Industry