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The Blind Watchmaker

Why the Evidence of Evolution Reveals a Universe without Design


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Richard Dawkins’s classic remains the definitive argument for our modern understanding of evolution.

The Blind Watchmaker is the seminal text for understanding evolution today. In the eighteenth century, theologian William Paley developed a famous metaphor for creationism: that of the skilled watchmaker. In The Blind Watchmaker, Richard Dawkins crafts an elegant riposte to show that the complex process of Darwinian natural selection is unconscious and automatic. If natural selection can be said to play the role of a watchmaker in nature, it is a blind one—working without foresight or purpose.

In an eloquent, uniquely persuasive account of the theory of natural selection, Dawkins illustrates how simple organisms slowly change over time to create a world of enormous complexity, diversity, and beauty.


"As readable and vigorous a defense of Darwinism as has been published since 1859." — The Economist

"Dawkins has done more than anyone else now writing to make evolutionary biology comprehensible and acceptable to a general audience." — John Maynard Smith

"A model of how to explain complicated ideas without dumbing them down or boring one’s readers." — Steven Pinker, The Guardian

"One of the best science books—one of the best any books—I have ever read." — Lee Dembart, Los Angeles Times


Winner — Los Angeles Times Book Prize, 1987