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Thursday, February 7, 2008

Play Brings Darwin's Letters to Life

Re: Design, a play that dramatizes the relationship between Charles Darwin and Harvard University botanist Asa Gray—and how they championed the revolutionary theory of natural selection—is coming to the stage in Boston and Gray's hometown of Cambridge, Massachusetts, beginning Wednesday. The script of the play, commissioned by the Darwin Correspondence Project, is based in large part on letters exchanged between the two scientists (many of which have not been previously published). With candor and emotion, the men debate the relationship between science and religion as Gray tries to reconcile his Christian beliefs with Darwin's emerging theory of evolution. —Heather Wax