Evolution: The Remarkable History of a Scientific Theory (Modern Library Chronicles)

Evolution: The Remarkable History of a Scientific Theory (Modern Library Chronicles)

Edward J. Larson


“I usually acknowledged earlier than beginning, that I had without doubt I may still often repent of the entire undertaking.” So wrote Charles Darwin aboard The Beagle, sure for the Galapagos Islands and what may arguably turn into the best and so much arguable discovery in clinical background. however the thought of evolution didn't spring full-blown from the pinnacle of Darwin. because the sunrise of humanity, clergymen, philosophers, and scientists have debated the foundation and improvement of lifestyles in the world, and with glossy technology, that discuss shifted into excessive gear.

In this full of life, deeply erudite paintings, Pulitzer Prize–winning technological know-how historian Edward J. Larson takes us on a guided journey of Darwin’s “dangerous idea,” from its theoretical antecedents within the early 19th century to the intense breakthroughs of Darwin and Wallace, to Watson and Crick’s gorgeous discovery of the DNA double helix, and to the victorious neo-Darwinian synthesis and emerging sociobiology today.

Along the best way, Larson expertly locations the medical upheaval of evolution in cultural viewpoint: the social and philosophical earthquake that was once the French Revolution; the improvement, in England, of a laissez-faire capitalism in song with a Darwinian ethos of “survival of the fittest”; the emergence of Social Darwinism and the darkish technology of eugenics opposed to a backdrop of business revolution; the yankee Christian backlash opposed to evolutionism that culminated within the well-known Scopes trial; and directly to today’s global, the place non secular fundamentalists litigate for the correct to coach “creation technology” along evolution in U.S. public faculties, whilst the idea itself keeps to adapt in new and mind-blowing directions.

Throughout, Larson trains his highlight at the lives and careers of the scientists, explorers, and eccentrics whose collaborations and competitions have pushed the speculation of evolution ahead. listed below are graphics of Cuvier, Lamarck, Darwin, Wallace, Haeckel, Galton, Huxley, Mendel, Morgan, Fisher, Dobzhansky, Watson and Crick, W. D. Hamilton, E. O. Wilson, and so on. Celebrated as one among mankind’s crowning clinical achievements and reviled as a risk to our inner most values, the idea of evolution has completely remodeled our view of existence, faith, origins, and the speculation itself, and continues to be debatable, specifically within the usa (where ninety% of adults don't join the entire Darwinian vision). Replete with clean fabric and new insights, Evolution will teach and tell whereas taking readers on a desirable trip of discovery.

From the Hardcover edition.

Show sample text content

Download sample