Men of Rock a Documentary Review

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The documentary is entitled Men of Rock which was produced by the company named British Broadcasting Company(BBC). It was presented to us by Professor Iain Simpson Stewart, a British Geologist. The film was mostly filmed in Scotland where James Hutton conducted his research. This film depicts the Story of James Hutton, Father of Modern Geology and how he pioneered in this field. The film also explained how our rocks and landscapes was formed.

Once a year, James Hutton would dig up and clean the drainage ditches at the farmhouses at Slighhouse. Whilst clearing these ditches he became conscious that rain was washing down the topsoil of the farmland and is carrying it downstream. He realized that this phenomenon may not be happening only in Scotland, but it could also be happening anywhere in the whole world. Hutton strongly disagreed that the biblical explanation that God created the world with a single blow and manage to remain the same as it was before. Instead of believing the Biblical explanation of how the Earth was formed, Hutton came up with two fundamental explanations of how land can be created or formed. The first way was that weather eroded rocks turning it into sediments, the sediments then will get washed up and carried through lakes, rivers and other water bodies. This will then sink down and will get compressed thus forming a new form of rock called sedimentary rocks. The Second idea is, due to Earth’s high internal pressure and temperature it was enough to melt rock which then cooled down to create new land. With these concepts he envisioned that the Earth repairing itself and was undergoing an infinite cycle of creation and destruction of land.

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Hutton traveled to Blair Atholl in Perthsire, Scotland to affirm that molten rock had to flow into Dalradian rock (Sandstone) in order to create granite. Hutton also explored Siccar Point wherein he observed angular unconformity. Which he later wrote that the evidence of the rocks provided conclusive proof of the uniformitarian theory of geological development; that is, that the natural laws and processes which operate in the universe have never changed and apply everywhere.

William Thomson also known as the 1st Baron Kelvin was a respected Scottish-Irish mathematical physicist and engineer who was born in Belfast in 1824. He is best known for his temperature scale the “Kelvin Degree” which was named after his title. He is said to be the first man to try and calculate the age of the Earth.

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