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

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9780192862099: The Origins of Life: From the Birth of Life to the Origin of Language

When John Maynard Smith and Eörs Szathmáry published The Major Transitions in Evolution, it was seen as a major work in biology. Nature hailed it as a book of "grand and daunting sweep...A splendid and rewarding tour de force." And New Scientist wrote that it captured "the essence of modern biology," calling it "an extremely significant book which, as a bonus, is very readable." Now, in The Origins of Life, Maynard Smith and Szathmáry have completely rewritten Transitions to bring their ideas to a wider audience of general readers. Here is a brilliant, original picture of how life evolved on earth, focusing primarily on six major transitionsdramatic breakthroughs in the way that information was passed between generations. The authors offer illuminating explorations of the origin of life itself, the arrival of the first cells with nuclei, the first reproduction by sexual means, the appearance of multicellular plants and animals, the emergence of cooperative animal societies, and the birth of language.

The Origins of Life represents the thinking of two leading scientists on questions that engage us allhow life began and how it gradually evolved from tiny invisible cells into whales and trees and human beings.

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Review:

Life is a long, strange trip, and in The Origins of Life, John Maynard Smith and Eörs Szathmáry blast you through its three-and-a-half-billion-year history at breathtaking pace.

Life, we learn, is information, transmitted in ever more intricate ways across the generations. Self-replicating chemicals walled themselves into cells, organized themselves into regimented communities of chromosomes, swapped notes with other populations to become sexual, cloned themselves to form multicellular colonies called organisms, got together with other colonies to form societies, and, eventually, in the case of one particular ape, developed the ability to put this whole story down on paper.

For those evolutionists brought up on the theory of "red queens" and "self genes," Origins provides a complementary crash course in the practical nuts-and-bolts biology behind the headlines. The authors describe the technical problems involved in the transition from one stage to another, and explain the ingenious and often fortuitous steps that natural selection took to overcome them. For example, the rigid walls of the first cells gave way to more flexible membranes that could engulf food particles and incorporate "little organs" such as mitochondria. A "cytoskeleton" of filaments and tubules was needed to maintain the cell's integrity, and--presto!--this structure was the perfect motorway for intracellular traffic, ideal for shearing the cell apart during cloning, and provided the earliest means of locomotion, such as the tail of sperm.

With this attention to detail, the book requires careful reading--but it's worth it. Maynard Smith and Szathmáry's book makes you realize just how lucky you are to be alive. --Oliver Curry, Amazon.co.uk

About the Author:


John Maynard Smith is an internationally renowned biologiest, widely respected for the originality of his ideas and quality of his thinking. He is a Professor in the School of Biological Sciences, University of Sussex. Eors Szathmary is a Professor at the Collegium Budapest, in Hungary.

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John Maynard Smith, Eors Szathmary
Editorial: Oxford University Press, United Kingdom (2000)
ISBN 10: 019286209X ISBN 13: 9780192862099
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Descripción Oxford University Press, United Kingdom, 2000. Paperback. Estado de conservación: New. Revised ed.. Language: English . Brand New Book. In this fascinating book, John Maynard Smith and Eors Szathmary present an original picture of evolution. They propose that during evolution there have been a number of major transitions in the way in which information is passed between generations. These transitions include the appearance of the first replicating molecules, the emergence of co-operative animal societies, and the unique language ability of humans. Containing many new ideas, this book is contemporary biology on the grandest scale, from the birth of life to the origin of language. Nº de ref. de la librería AOP9780192862099

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Szathmáry, Eà rs, Smith, John Maynard
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John Maynard Smith, Eors Szathmary
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Descripción Oxford University Press, United Kingdom, 2000. Paperback. Estado de conservación: New. Revised ed.. Language: English . Brand New Book. In this fascinating book, John Maynard Smith and Eors Szathmary present an original picture of evolution. They propose that during evolution there have been a number of major transitions in the way in which information is passed between generations. These transitions include the appearance of the first replicating molecules, the emergence of co-operative animal societies, and the unique language ability of humans. Containing many new ideas, this book is contemporary biology on the grandest scale, from the birth of life to the origin of language. Nº de ref. de la librería AOP9780192862099

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Descripción OUP Oxford 2000-03-16, Oxford, 2000. paperback. Estado de conservación: New. Nº de ref. de la librería 9780192862099

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Descripción Oxford University Press. Paperback. Estado de conservación: new. BRAND NEW, The Origins of Life: From the Birth of Life to the Origin of Language, John Maynard Smith, Eors Szathmary, In this fascinating book, John Maynard Smith and Eors Szathmary present an original picture of evolution. They propose that during evolution there have been a number of major transitions in the way in which information is passed between generations. These transitions include the appearance of the first replicating molecules, the emergence of co-operative animal societies, and the unique language ability of humans. Containing many new ideas, this book is contemporary biology on the grandest scale, from the birth of life to the origin of language. Nº de ref. de la librería B9780192862099

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Descripción Oxford University Press, United Kingdom, 2000. Paperback. Estado de conservación: New. Revised ed.. Language: English . This book usually ship within 10-15 business days and we will endeavor to dispatch orders quicker than this where possible. Brand New Book. In this fascinating book, John Maynard Smith and Eors Szathmary present an original picture of evolution. They propose that during evolution there have been a number of major transitions in the way in which information is passed between generations. These transitions include the appearance of the first replicating molecules, the emergence of co-operative animal societies, and the unique language ability of humans. Containing many new ideas, this book is contemporary biology on the grandest scale, from the birth of life to the origin of language. Nº de ref. de la librería BTE9780192862099

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