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Objections to evolution have been raised since evolutionary ideas came to prominence in the 19th century. When Charles Darwin published his 1859 book On the Origin of Species, his theory of evolution (the idea that species arose through descent with modification from a single common ancestor in a process driven by natural selection) initially met opposition from scientists with different theories, but eventually came to receive overwhelming acceptance in the scientific community. The observation of evolutionary processes occurring (as well as the modern evolutionary synthesis explaining that evidence) has been uncontroversial among mainstream biologists since the 1940s.
Since then, most criticisms and denials of evolution have come from religious groups, rather than from the scientific community. Although many religious groups have found reconciliation of their beliefs with evolution, such as through theistic evolution, other religious groups continue to reject evolutionary explanations in favor of creationism, the belief that the universe and life were created by supernatural forces. The U.S.-centered creation–evolution controversy has become a focal point of perceived conflict between religion and science.
Several branches of creationism, including creation science, neo-creationism, and intelligent design, argue that the idea of life being directly designed by a god or intelligence is at least as scientific as evolutionary theory, and should therefore be taught in public education. Such arguments against evolution have become widespread and include objections to evolution's evidence, methodology, plausibility, morality, and scientific acceptance. The scientific community does not recognize such objections as valid, pointing to detractors' misinterpretations of such things as the scientific method, evidence, and basic physical laws.
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