Evolution Extended: Biological Debates on the Meaning of Life

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9780262023733: Evolution Extended: Biological Debates on the Meaning of Life
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As in her first anthology, From Gaia to Selfish Genes , Barlow weaves selections from both classical and contemporary writings of biologists and philosophers into a unified exploration of the variety of meanings that can be drawn from the theory of biological evolution, in particular, the debate centering on whether evolution is progressive and whether life on earth has meaning in the cosmos at large. Editorial passages provide context and frame the debates. Woven through the debates are biological illustrations, fine art, and poetry evocative of the text. Annotation copyright Book News, Inc. Portland, Or.

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About the Author:

Connie Barlow is a science writer.

From Library Journal:

This unique anthology of 39 major selections explores the basic issues and disparate interpretations of science, philosophy, and theology regarding evolution. The topics covered include complexity, diversity, contingency, dominant types, symbiosis, and mass extinctions; evolutionary worldviews ranging from Darwinian materialism to Teilhardian mysticism are discussed. Special attention is given to a critical examination of chance and necessity and to the alleged teleology (progress, purpose, direction, and end-goal) in organic evolution. Of particular significance are excerpts from Julian Huxley, Jacques Monod, William Provine, and Edward O. Wilson. Entries on the present Gaia hypothesis and the ongoing controversy between fundamentalist creationists and scientific evolutionists make this book relevant as well as informative and provocative. Enriched with poems, illustrations, editorial comments, and copious references, this is recommended for all academic and public library evolution collections.
James Birx, Canisius Coll., Buffalo
Copyright 1994 Reed Business Information, Inc.

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Published by The MIT Press (1994)
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Published by The MIT Press (1994)
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