By: Rudolf A Raff
320 pages, 6 colour illustrations, 6 b/w illustrations
In this book, Rudolf A. Raff reaches out to the scientifically queasy, using his life story and his growth as a scientist to illustrate why science matters, especially at a time when many Americans are both suspicious of science and hostile to scientific ways of thinking. Noting that science has too often been the object of controversy in school curriculums and debates on public policy issues ranging from energy and conservation to stem-cell research and climate change, Raff argues that when the public is confused or ill-informed, these issues tend to be decided on religious, economic, and political grounds that disregard the realities of the natural world. Speaking up for science and scientific literacy, Raff tells how and why he became an evolutionary biologist and describes some of the vibrant and living science of evolution. "Once We All Had Gills" is also the story of evolution writ large: its history, how it is studied, what it means, and why it has become a useful target in a cultural war against rational thought and the idea of a secular, religiously tolerant nation.
This biography-history-travelogue-defense-of-science-and-the-scientific-method should appeal to readers of Sean Carroll and Stephen J. Gould--to anyone who is fascinated by travel and scientific exploration... An engaging story told with verve and style.
- Brian Hall, author of "Evolution: Principles and Processes"
Part I: Becoming a Naturalist
2. Layers of the Past
3. An Age of Dinosaurs
4. A School a Minute
5. In the Natural World
7. Going South
8. Learning to Love the Bomb
9. On the Road to Chiapas
10. The Masked Messenger
Part II: Finding Evolution, Founding Evo-Devo
11. Evolution as Science
12. Dining with Darwin
13. Life with Sea Urchins
14. Embryos Evolving
15. Evolution in the Tasman Sea
16. An Alternate Present
17. Biology Meets Fossils
Part III: Strange New World
18. Darwin's Day in Court
19. Creationist Makeovers
20. Evolution Matters
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On behalf of Parque Nacional Nahuel Huapi I would like to thank NHBS. The book will be very useful for my students.
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