Two-time Pulitzer Prize winner Edward O. Wilson is one of the leading biologists and philosophical thinkers of our time. In this compelling collection, Wilson's observations range from the tiny glands of ants to the nature of the living universe. Many of the pieces are considered landmarks in evolutionary biology, ecology, and behavioral biology. Wilson explores topics as diverse as slavery in ants, the genetic basis of societal structure, the discovery of the taxon cycle, the original formulation of the theory of island biology, a critique of subspecies as a unit of classification, and the conservation of life's diversity.
Each article is presented in its original form, dating from Wilson's first published article in 1949 to his most recent exploration of the natural world. Preceding each piece is a brief essay by Wilson that explains the context in which the article was written and provides insights into the scientist himself and the debates of the time. This collection enables us to share Wilson's various vantage points and to view the complexities of nature through his eyes.
Wilson aficionados, along with readers discovering his work for the first time, will find in this collection a world of beauty, complexity, and challenge.
Edward O. Wilson was an entomologist and biologist known for his pioneering work on evolution and sociobiology and was often referred to as the father of sociobiology and modern biodiversity studies. He authored many books, including Sociobiology: The New Synthesis (1975), On Human Nature (winner of a 1979 Pulitzer Prize), The Ants (winner of a 1991 Pulitzer Prize), and Consilience: The Unity of Knowledge (1998). He received over one hundred awards, many of them international, in science and letters. He was the Pellegrino University Professor Emeritus at the Museum of Comparative Zoology, Harvard University.
A fascinating collection from one of the most influential thinkers of our time. - Steven Pinker, author of How the Mind Works and The Blank Slate "A wonderful sample of the writings of one of our most distinguished evolutionists and a great champion of biodiversity. Wilson is also one of the broadest thinkers on the intellectual stage today." - Paul R. Ehrlich, author of Human Natures: Genes, Cultures, and the Human Prospect"