Books  Evolutionary Biology  Evolutionary Biology 

The Origins of Life: From the Birth of Life to the Origin of Language

By: John Maynard Smith and Eörs Szathmary

180 pages, 42 illus

Oxford University Press

Paperback | Dec 2000 | #101640 | ISBN: 019286209X
Availability: Usually dispatched within 2-3 weeks Details
NHBS Price: £15.99 $20/€19 approx
Hardback | Dec 1999 | #90260 | ISBN: 0198504934
Out of Print Details

About this book

Based on the authors' highly successful The Major Transitions in Evolution, this book is a new treatise on evolution and the transference of information. During evolution there have been a number of major transitions in the way in which information is passed between generations. These include the origin of genes, the genetic code, cells, multicellular animals and plants, animal societies and language. The evolution of increased complexity depended upon these transitions. This highly original and accessible book describes these transitions and how they came about.
'I can recommend this book as a thoroughly interesting read' Biologist


"Moving speedily from epoch to epoch, fueled by a few important concepts (such as the division of labor) and explaining all the genetics they use, Smith and Szathmary show just how difficult it has been to evolve complex organisms whose genes cooperate rather than compete'.... Compact, dense, formidable yet accessible, this book exposes readers to the cutting edge in theoretical evolutionary biology."--Publishers Weekly



Contents

PREFACE; 1. LIFE AND INFORMATION; 2. THE MAJOR TRANSITIONS; 3. FROM CHEMISTRY TO HEREDITY; 4. FROM THE RNA WORLD TO THE MODERN WORLD; 5. FROM HEREDITY TO SIMPLE CELLS; 6. THE ORIGIN OF EUKARYOTIC CELLS; 7. THE ORIGIN OF SEX; 8. GENETIC CONFLICT; 9. LIVING TOGETHER; 10. THE EVOLUTION OF MANY-CELLED ORGANISMS; 11. ANIMAL SOCIETIES; 12. FROM ANIMAL TO HUMAN SOCIETIES; 13. THE ORIGIN OF LANGUAGE; GLOSSARY; NOTES; FURTHER READING; INDEX

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