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The End of Evolution (Phoenix Giants S.)

Peter Ward

60 ratings by Goodreads
ISBN 10: 1857993683 / ISBN 13: 9781857993684
Published by Weidenfeld & Nicholson history, 1995
Used Condition: Good
From Better World Books (Mishawaka, IN, U.S.A.)

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Bibliographic Details

Title: The End of Evolution (Phoenix Giants S.)

Publisher: Weidenfeld & Nicholson history

Publication Date: 1995

Book Condition:Good

About this title


There have been two great mass extinctions in world history. The first took place 250 million years ago, and its causes, relating to the drift of the continents, are largely unresolved. The second, at 65 million years ago, brought to an end the Age of Dinosaurs. Again, the book argues, the causes were complex, but the culminating factor was one or more asteroids crasing into the Earth, unleashing fires, tidal waves and poisonous gases. Now it seems that a third mass extinction is under way, which will bring to an end the third great era of life on Earth, the Age of Mammals. The global ecology was already under stress from the rapid climate changes of the Ice Ages, when another great asteroid hit the Earth: that asteroid is Homo sapiens. The book maintains that we could now be witnessing the end of evolution. Worse still, it argues, a fair amount of the damage is now being caused by well-intentioned "scientific" intervention. However, Ward does offer some suggestions that could make the outcome slightly less bad than it otherwise might be.

From the Publisher:

"The pace of species extinction provoked by human rapacity may well now equal the rate of loss in the great mass extinction events that punctuate the history of life. We need a broad perspective on this most portentous of all ecological and evolutionary disasters-and who better than a paleontologist to provide it." -- Stephen Jay Gould

Paleontologist Peter Ward searches for the clues to catastrophic extinctions and documents signs that a third mass extinction has already begun on our planet. With contagious enthusiasm for fossil-hunting and love of the land and sea, Ward documents the rich diversity of life past and present, bringing home how fragile the balance of life on earth is, while projecting into the future to show the best, and worst, possible scenarios we can hope for --and work toward.

"The current extinction of species at the hand of Man -- a crime that posterity will regard as more pernicious than the burning of the library of Alexandria -- is investigated by Peter Ward with rare perception and depth of feeling." -- Timothy Ferpus, author of The Mind's Sky.

"This remarkably lucid presentation of a complex subject is reminiscent of Stephen Jay Gould's books." -- Publisher's Weekly.

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