The Ancestor's Tale HBK : A Pilgrimage to the dawn of Life

Author(s): Richard Dawkins

Popular Science

One of the most brilliant scientists of our age gives us his definitive work: a synthesis of his comprehensive vision of life
The Ancestor's Tale is a pilgrimage back through time; a journey on which we meet up with fellow pilgrims along the route as we and they converge on our common ancestors. Chimpanzees join us at about 6 million years in the past, gorillas at 7 million years, orang utans at 14 million years, as we stride together, a growing band. The journey provides the setting for a collection for some 40 tales. Each explores an aspect of evolutionary biology through the stories of characters met along the way or glimpsed from afar - the Elephant Bird's Tale, the Marsupial Mole's Tale, the Coelacanth's Tale. Together they give a deep understanding of the processes that have shaped life on Earth: convergent evolution, the isolation of populations, continental drift, extinction. The tales are interspersed with prologues detailing the journey, route maps showing joining lineages, and life-like reconstructions of our common ancestors. The Ancestor's Tale represents a pilgrimage on an unimaginable scale: our goal is four billion years away, and the number os pilgrims joining us grows vast - ultimately encompassing all living creatures. At the end of the journey lies something remarkable in its simplicity and transformative power: the first, humble, replicating molecules. About the Author: Richard Dawkins is an evolutionary biologist renowned throughout the world. He was educated at Oxford where he did his doctorate under the nobel-prize winning ethologist Niko Tinbergen. From 1967-1969 he was an Assistant Professor at the University of California at Berkley. Since 1995 he has been Charles Simonyi Professor of the Public Understanding of Science at Oxford University. His books rank among the most influential intellectual works of our time. Reviews: 'Dawkins's new book, which is fabulous in many more ways than one, is a picaresque account of evolution running in reverse as a series of wondrous tales of explanation, from man to the amoeba, interspersed with anecdotes, and a huge circuit of reference to mythology, literature,nonsense verse and history. Lavishly illustrated, and brilliantly signposted, with something to amaze on every page, it will be a hard book for non-scientists to put down. There is not a scientist writing today who expounds his subject for the lay reader with such scintillating clarity and sheer politesse for the limit


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General Fields

  • : 9780297825036
  • : weiduk
  • : weiduk
  • : books

Special Fields

  • : Richard Dawkins
  • : Hardback
  • : 1