I feel most deeply that this whole question of Creation is too profound for human intellect. A dog might as well speculate on the mind of Newton! Let each man hope and believe what he can' Charles Darwin, 1862. Introduction is by Richard Dawkins
Charles Darwin was born on February 12, 1809 in Shropshire, England. He was educated at Edinburgh University and Christ's College, Cambridge. Between 1831 and 1836 he travelled in South America aboard the H.M.S Beagle to explore the geology and natural history of the area, and published his journal of findings in 1839. His most famous book On the Origin of the Species by Means of Natural Selection, appeared in 1859 and is arguably one of the most important scientific works ever published. The theories of evolution and natural selection proposed in this book and The Descent of Man (1871) are still the subject of intense debate and scrutiny today. Charles Darwin died on 19 April, 1882 and was buried in Westminster Abbey.
Originally published in 1859, Darwin's revolutionary idea is revisited in this spirited and profoundly enthralling reading by Professor Richard Dawkins, who in reading Darwin's material aloud manages to rediscover old ideas and unearth some dramatic subtleties in his prose. Dawkins offers a well-pronounced, pitch-perfect delivery and smartly never attempts to turn the reading into a performance from Darwin's point of view. Instead, Dawkins delivers the material from his own context as a modern-day interpreter of the classical work. Dawkins also splendidly adapts this abridgment, leaving out sections of Darwin's original theories that have been discredited by modern science. Dawkins says he believes his alterations are what Darwin himself would have wished for the recording, and the final result is an absolutely astounding glimpse into life as we know it. (Aug.) Copyright 2008 Reed Business Information.
As a milestone not only in the history of science but also in cultural history, On the Origin of Species belongs in every library, high school and above. Nature writer Quammen (The Reluctant Mr. Darwin) offers a gloriously illustrated and richly annotated volume, which testifies to the book's enduring legacy. Throughout the text, relevant sidebars from other of Darwin's writings, including his Autobiography, field notes from the HMS Beagle, and his myriad letters, are presented for their insight. Illustrations include historical images, such as sketches, woodcuts, and portraits of people and places, but also included are contemporary photographs of the flora and fauna that Darwin described. Between the contextual additions and the edifying illustrations, there is no comparable volume. For all libraries. Copyright 2008 Reed Business Information.
"The most important book ever written" * New Scientist *
"No other book has so transformed how we look at the natural world and mankind's origins" * Sunday Telegraph *
"Why does Darwin's theory matter now? Because it is the basis of modern biology and much medical research; it provides a tool with which to understand the natural world; it offers a deeper, if imperfect, understanding of our behaviour, about where we came from and where we might be going" * Observer *