BBC World Service

Like Confessing a Murder

Listen again - BBC World Service website

This specially commissioned drama is based entirely on Charles and Emma Darwin's own words and correspondence.

Darwin was an affectionate family man, fully engaged - sometimes heartbreakingly so - in the lives of his wife Emma and their children. Emma was concerned that the spiritual implications of some of her husband's ideas would undermine his Christian faith. Indeed, years before 'On the Origin of Species' was published, when outlining the theory to a friend, Darwin said it felt "like confessing a murder".

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Darwin letter © Cambridge University Library

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