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"Sparks From Law's Anvil": The Evolution Controversies in New Mexico, 1925-2008

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Please use this identifier to cite or link to this item: http://hdl.handle.net/1928/9350

"Sparks From Law's Anvil": The Evolution Controversies in New Mexico, 1925-2008

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Title: "Sparks From Law's Anvil": The Evolution Controversies in New Mexico, 1925-2008
Author: Incaudo, Peter
Advisor(s): Szasz, Ferenc
Committee Member(s): Ball, Durwood
Cahill, Cathleen
Department: History
Subject: Evolution
New Mexico History
Degree Level: Masters
Abstract: After attaining statehood in 1912, New Mexico witnessed an influx of American people, culture and controversies. This thesis tracks the development of controversies over the theory of evolution in the public schools of the state of New Mexico during the twentieth century and into the twenty-first century. Beginning with the state’s reaction to the 1925 Scopes trial, I discuss the reasons that the evolution controversy remained largely muted in 1920s New Mexico. Next, I examine the brief, but unique, 1927 evolution controversy sparked by a rumor of legislation to mandate the teaching of evolution. From there, I describe New Mexico’s high-profile role in the ongoing modern debate. By placing New Mexico within the context of the national debate, this thesis explores the ways in which New Mexicans received and adapted the controversy to the conditions in their state. In the process, we can see the transformation of New Mexico into a state fully immersed in American culture and controversy.
Graduation Date: May 2009
URI: http://hdl.handle.net/1928/9350


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