In "Climbing Mount Improbable", Richard Dawkins, author of "The God Delusion", builds a powerful and carefully reasoned argument for evolutionary adaptation as the force behind all life on earth. What drives species to evolve? How can intricate structures such as the human eye, the spider's web or the wings of birds develop, seemingly by chance? ...
In "Climbing Mount Improbable", Richard Dawkins, author of "The God Delusion", builds a powerful and carefully reasoned argument for evolutionary adaptation as the force behind all life on earth. What drives species to evolve? How can intricate structures such as the human eye, the spider's web or the wings of birds develop, seemingly by chance? Regarding evolution's most complex achievements as peaks on a metaphorical mountain, "Climbing Mount Improbable" reveals the ways in which the theory of natural selection can precisely explain the beautiful, bizarre and seemingly 'designed' complexity of living things. And through it all runs the thread of DNA, the molecule of life, responsible for its own destiny on an unending pilgrimage through time. Accompanied by evocative illustrations, Dawkins' eloquent descriptions of the living world's astonishing adaptations throw back the curtain on the mysteries of 'Mount Improbable'. "A beautiful, barnstorming thunderclap of a book". (Michael White, "Mail on Sunday"). "Exhilarating - a perfect, elegant riposte to a great deal of fuzzy thinking about natural selection and evolution". ("Observer"). "Dawkins has done more than anyone else now writing to make evolutionary biology comprehensible and acceptable". ("Sunday Times"). "Dazzling". (David Attenborough). "A cracking good book on evolution". (John Gribbin). Richard Dawkins is a Fellow of both the Royal Society and the Royal Society of Literature, and Vice President of the British Humanist Association. He was first catapulted to fame with "The Selfish Gene", which he followed with a string of bestselling books: "The Extended Phenotype", "The Blind Watchmaker", "River Out of Eden", "Unweaving the Rainbow", and an impassioned defence of atheism, "The God Delusion".
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I love reading Dawkins, and bought this as part of a complete set (in progress.) (Mr. Dawkins has a bulldog instinct that makes me shake my head.) Seems to miss the wham of Greatest Show and Ancestor's Tale. It is now in my read pile, but not by my chair.
Physically the book is as sold and came as expected.
Publishers Weekly, 1997-07-07 A prominent Darwinian examines the role of chance in evolution. (Sept.)
Publishers Weekly, 1996-07-22 While an enzyme molecule or an eye might seem supremely improbable in their complexity, they are not accidental, nor need we assume that they are the designed handiwork of a Creator, asserts Oxford biologist Dawkins (The Selfish Gene). This foremost neo-Darwinian exponent explains the dazzling array of living things as the result of natural selectionęthe slow, cumulative, one-step-at-a-time, non-random survival of chance variants. Both a frontal assault on creationism and an enthralling tour of the natural world, this beautifully illustrated study is based on a set of BBC lectures, imparting a tone at once conversational and magisterial. Dawkins explores how ordered complexity arose by discussing spiders' web-building techniques, the gradual evolution of elephant trunks and of wings (birds, he concludes, evolved from two-legged dinosaurs, not from tree gliders) and the symbiotic relationship between the 900 species of figs and their sole genetic companions, the miniature wasps that pollinate specific fig species. Using "computer biomorphs" (simulated creatures "bred" from a common ancestor), Dawkins demonstrates how varieties of the same plant or animal species can vary in shape because of differences in just a few genes. Author tour. (Sept.)
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