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Charles Darwin and the Question of Evolution
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The publication of Charles Darwin's On the Origin of Species in 1859 is widely regarded as a turning point in knowledge of the natural world. But Darwin's theory of natural selection was not developed in a vacuum; rather, it represents the culmination of an enormous shift in scientific and popular opinion on the subject of species mutability from the late eighteenth century onward. Through her insightful introduction and engaging collection of documents, Sandra Herbert examines this era of scientific thought and the startling discoveries that led Darwin and others to the conclusion that life has evolved. A wide range of documents from over a dozen authors -- including letters, illustrations, scientific tracts, and excerpts from Darwin's own notebooks and On the Origin of Species -- offer a fascinating glimpse into this crucial era of scientific thought. Thoughtful document headnotes, questions for consideration, a chronology, and a selected bibliography provide students with additional context and pedagogical support.
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Table of Contents

PART I: INTRODUCTION: DEVELOPMENT OF THE THEORY OF EVOLUTION .- PART II: THE DOCUMENTS.- The Question of Evolution Arises.- Carl Linnaeus, Genera Plantarum: The Families of Plants, 1787.- Alexander von Humboldt, Personal Narrative of Travels to the Equinoctial Regions of the New Continent during the Years 1799-1804.- Erasmus Darwin, The Temple of Nature; or the Origin of Society, 1803.- Josiah Wedgwood, 'Am I Not a Man and a Brother?' 1787.- An American Version, 1837 .- Thomas Jefferson, Notes on the State of Virginia, 1787.- Georges Cuvier, Essay on the Theory of the Earth, with Mineralogical Illustrations by Professor Jameson, 1822.- Thomas Robert Malthus, An Essay on the Principle of Population, 1798.- William Paley, Natural Theology, 1802.- Jean Baptiste de Lamarck, Zoological Philosophy, 1809.- Charles Lyell, Principles of Geology, 1832.- John Herschel, Letter to Charles Lyell, 1836.- Charles Darwin Addresses the Question of Evolution.- Charles Darwin, Journal of Researches, 1839.- Richard Owen, Glyptodon clavipes, (Gigantic Extinct Armadillo), 1845.- Charles Darwin, Ornithological Notes, 1836.- Charles Darwin, Notebook B, 1837.- Emma Darwin, Letter to Charles Darwin, c. February 1839.- Roderick Murchison, Presidential Address to the Geological Society of London, 1843.- [Robert Chambers,] Vestiges of the Natural History of Creation, 1844.- Alfred Russel Wallace, On the Law Which Has Regulated the Introduction of New Species, 1855.- Charles Darwin, Letter to Asa Gray, 1857.- Alfred Russel Wallace, Recollections, 1858.- Charles Darwin, Recollections, 1831-1858.- Whitwell Elwin, Letter to John Murray, 1859 .- Charles Darwin, On the Origin of Species by Means of Natural Selection, or the Preservation of Favoured Races in the Struggle for Life, 1859.- Athenaeum Report on the 1860 Meeting of the British Association for the Advancement of Science .- Asa Gray, Review of the Origin, 1860.- Louis Agassiz, Review of the Origin, 1860.- Grave Sites of Asa Gray and Louis Agassiz, Mount Auburn Cemetery, Cambridge, Massachusetts.- Charles Darwin and Asa Gray, Letters, 1861-1866.

About the Author

SANDRA HERBERT is Professor Emerita of History at the University of Maryland Baltimore County, USA. Herbert edited The Red Notebook of Charles Darwin (1980) and co-edited Charles Darwin's Notebooks, 1836-1844 (1987).

Reviews

'Herbert's book is first rate. The introduction more than adequately prepares students for the superbly-chosen documents that follow.' - James J. Sack, University of Illinois at Chicago, USA 'I like how the author has presented natural history as international endeavour and how she shows the personal connections among the authors represented in the volume's documents.' - Shirley Roe, University of Connecticut, USA 'Herbert's volume covers a great deal of terrain with grace and clarity, and overall strikes a fine balance between introducing material for first-time readers and pointing toward next-level questions for reflection. It flows together beautifully, is written in a scholarly yet somewhat conversational tone that students will greatly appreciate, and the scholarship is exemplary.' - Katherine Pandora, University of Oklahoma, USA 'A good and useful volume for courses that spend a week or two on Darwin and the origins of evolutionary biology.' - Robert Friedel, University of Maryland, USA

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