Joachim Illies

from Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

Joachim Illies (born March 23, 1925 in Ketzin , Westhavelland district ; † June 3, 1982 in Schlitz in the Vogelsberg district ) was a German biologist , entomologist and non-fiction author.


Joachim Illies studied biology at the Georg-August-Universität Göttingen and the Christian-Albrechts-Universität zu Kiel . He was honorary professor of zoology at the Justus Liebig University in Gießen , conducted research at the then Max Planck Institute for Limnology in Plön and temporarily headed its branch office Limnological River Station in Schlitz. Illies mainly dealt scientifically with limnological questions, in particular with the ecology and systematics of freshwater insects.

Illies was also a Synodal of the Evangelical Church in Germany (EKD). He has published about 40 books on topics on the border between anthropology and theology .

1981 Illies belonged to the small circle of the first signatories of the Heidelberg Manifesto whose ethnopluralistisch justified racism startled the West German public and in the extreme right became scene of great importance. Illies told the weekly newspaper Die Zeit : “I have given my signature, I will stick to it. But no more, please ", and on a question about the racist content:" In biology we are already so far that we can only use the word 'race' in rabbits. "Together with Werner Georg Haverbeck , Another first signatory of the manifesto, Illies was appointed to the Ecological Council of the newly founded Ecological Democratic Party (ödp) in 1982 .

In the interdisciplinary field of theology and evolution research, Illies relativized the Darwinian approach to explaining evolution. “As a biologist, Joachim Illies was firmly convinced of the historical aspect of evolution. Illies clearly distanced himself from fundamentalists. But in the question of how all evolution comes about, he broke away from science. Darwinism, which he simply equated with chance and necessity , was for him a refuted hypothesis, ”said Carsten Bresch . According to Illies, it can only be the hand of biblical God that mysteriously drives evolution. In his last, posthumously published book Der Jahrhundert-Errtum on Darwinism and evolution, Illies argued accordingly with the following position: There is a step-by-step generation chain from amoeba to humans, but Darwinism with its reduction to mutation and selection is an inadmissible simplification of all evolutionary events . There is more to evolution; that was something hitherto not understood; this misunderstanding forms the bridge to the religious.

Joachim Illies died shortly after a press conference in Frankfurt on heart failure . There he presented his book The Secret of the Green Planet . Carsten Bresch, who had previously planned a scientific discussion with him on the subject of creation and / or evolution on Austrian television, could now only hold an obituary for Joachim Illies, which he finished with great respect: “His books become the memory of people and confessor Joachim Illies keep up with those who disagree scientifically. "

Joachim Illies is the father of the author and journalist Florian Illies .


  • We observe and breed insects , Stuttgart (Franckh) 1956
  • Adam's Craft , Furrow 1967
  • Noah's Ark , Kosmos 1968
  • Science as the expectation of salvation , Furche 1969
  • The monkeys and us , ro-ro-ro-tele 1970
  • Human Zoology , Piper 1971
  • Fig leaf and laurel , Schünemann 1971
  • The thing with the apple , Herder 1972, with contributions by Heinrich Spaemann , Christa Meves , Ernst Bloch and others. a.
  • For a humane future , Herder 1972
  • Hope in Science , Die Waage, Zurich 1972
  • Biology and the Image of Man , Freiburg im Breisgau, Basel, Vienna (Herder) 1975, ISBN 3-451-07526-1
  • The secret of the living - life u. Work by the biologist Adolf Portmann , Munich 1976 (Kindler), ISBN 3-463-00673-1
  • The other side of biology , Freiburg im Breisgau, Basel, Vienna 1978 (Herder), ISBN 3-451-07677-2
  • Cultural biology of humans - the human being between law and freedom , Munich 1978 (Piper), ISBN 3-492-00482-2
  • Theologians . Herder, 1980
  • Between angel and animal . Schulte + Gerth, Asslar 1981
  • Zoological shops . Herder, 1981
  • The secret of the green planet , 248 pages, Frankfurt / Main 1982 (Umschau-Verlag), ISBN 3-524-69038-6
  • The mistake of the century - appreciation and criticism of Darwinism , 200 pages, Frankfurt / Main 1983 (Umschau-Verlag), ISBN 3-524-69046-7


  • Brockhaus Enzyklopädie, Nineteenth, completely revised edition, Volume 10, Page 393, Article Illies, Joachim , Mannheim 1989, ISBN 3-7653-1110-3
  • Carsten Bresch : Obituary for Joachim Illies, in AGEMUS , June 1982, page 25 f., Freiburg im Breisgau

Individual evidence

  1. Andreas Wagner: The “Heidelberg Manifesto” from 1981. German professors warn against “foreign infiltration of the German people” in: Johanna Klatt, Robert Lorenz (ed.): Manifests: History and Presence of the Political Appeal Bielefeld: transcript, 2011. ISBN 978 -3-8376-1679-8 . Pp. 285-313
  2. Hanno Kühnert: Racist sounds in: The time of February 5, 1982 ( online )
  3. Jürgen Wüst: Conservatism and Ecological Movement. An investigation into the tension between party, movement and ideology using the example of the Ecological Democratic Party (ÖDP). Frankfurt / M., 1993, pp. 62, 109f.
  4. a b Carsten Bresch: Obituary for Joachim Illies, in AGEMUS , June 1982, page 25 f.
  5. cf. also Edgar Dacqué

Web links