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Why We Get Sick: The New Science of Darwinian Medicine

by Randolph Nesse and George Williams
New York: Vintage Books, 1994. 304 pages.

Nesse, a physician, and Williams, a leading evolutionary biologist, offer both medical researchers and general readers a wide-ranging survey of "Darwinian medicine." Suggesting evolutionary explanations for a wide range of phenomena including Sudden Infant Death Syndrome, cancer, and mental disorders, they offer researchers guidance in developing and testing hypotheses. General readers can expect to gain an evolutionary understanding of their bodies' functioning, and occasional misfunctioning." Enjoyable reading, praised by Edward O.

At the Water's Edge: Macroevolution and the Transformation of Life

by Carl Zimmer
New York: Free Press, 1998. 304 pages.

During one important period of life´s history, vertebrate creatures left the water to colonize land, and later, some vertebrates readapted to that environment. Zimmer traces the discovery of both the transition to land of early tetrapods, and the later transition to water of the whales. If you are ever having an argument over "transitional fossils", this is the book you want to have!

Reinventing Darwin

by Niles Eldredge
New York: Wiley, 1995. 244 pages.

From Niles Eldredge — renowned paleontologist, proponent of punctuated equilibrium, and Supporter of NCSE — comes Reinventing Darwin, which addresses "the great debate" between "ultra-Darwinians", such as John Maynard Smith and Richard Dawkins, and "naturalists", such as Steven Jay Gould, Steven Stanley, and Eldredge himself. Recommended to anyone interested in the theoretical underpinnings of evolutionary biology.

Darwin's Dangerous Idea: Evolution and the Meanings of Life

by Daniel Dennett
New York: Simon & Schuster, 1995. 592 pages

Tufts University philosopher Dennett thoroughly describes evolutionary science, including its current controversies, and then goes on to spell out its implications for modern philosophy and modern life. Dennett argues that natural selection "is a universal solvent, capable of cutting right to the heart of everything in sight".

Darwin's Ghost

by Steve Jones
New York: Random House, 2000. 416 pages.

It is Steve Jones who is Darwin's ghost: "ghost" as in "ghost writer," as he takes the ideas and concepts from Darwin's Origin of Species and presents them in modern English prose, illustrating his points with modern examples drawn from today's science.

The Evolutionists: The Struggle for Darwin's Soul

by Richard Morris
New York: W. H. Freeman, 2001. 262 pages.

Nearly all scientists agree: evolution did happen and natural selection was its driving force. An yet, a century and a half after Darwin, the theory of evolution is still being fought over with unparalleled ferocity.

In The Evolutionists, the highly praised author of more than a dozen books of popular science explores the fundamental questions about the evolutionary process that have provoked vehement disagreement among some of the world's most prominent scientists, including Stephen Jay Gould, Niles Eldredge, John Maynard Smith, and Richard Dawkins.

Evolution: The Triumph of an Idea

by Carl Zimmer
New York: HarperCollins, 2001. 384 pages.

Carl Zimmer, a well established science writer, presents a wonderful companion piece to the new PBS Evolution series by the same name. It presents a broad overview of evolution, and how it relates to other scientific fields like genetics, geology, and medicine. This is a beautifully done book with clear and accessible writing and illustrations throughout.

The Evolution Explosion: How Humans Cause Rapid Evolutionary Change

by Stephen R. Palumbi
New York: W. W. Norton & Company, 2002. 288 pages.

A critical look at the intersection of evolution and high-tech modern life. Evolution is not only the slow process that ruled the rise and fall of the dinosaurs over hundreds of millions of years. It also happens quickly — so quickly and frequently that it changes how all of us live our lives: drugs fail because diseases evolve; insects overcome the most powerful pesticides; HIV and tuberculosis develop resistance to the newest drugs in a few months. This is evolution with teeth.


by Douglas J. Futuyma
Sunderland, MA: Sinauer Associates, 2005. 603 pages.

From the publisher: "Evolution is a readily recognized descendant of the author's previous textbook, Evolutionary Biology. However, it is much shorter and is exclusively directed toward an undergraduate audience. Teachers and students will find the list of important concepts and terms in each chapter a helpful guide, and will appreciate the radically different dynamic figures and lively photographs. The content of all chapters has been updated, and material has been reorganized into new chapters such as 'Conflict and Cooperation' and 'How To Be Fit.' ...

Microbial Evolution: Gene Establishment, Survival, and Exchange

edited by Robert V. Miller and Martin J. Day
Washington, DC: Libri, 2004. 374 pages.

Published by the American Society for Microbiology in 2004, Microbial Evolution is a state-of-the-art compilation on the evolution of bacteria, containing twenty-two essays under four broad rubrics: intracellular mechanisms for generating diversity, intercellular mechanisms for gene movement, mechanisms for gene establishment and survival, and mechanisms for detecting genetic diversity.


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