The History of Life: A Very Short Introduction

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9780199226320: The History of Life: A Very Short Introduction

Here is the extraordinary story of the unfolding of life on Earth, told by Michael J. Benton, a world-renowned authority on biodiversity. Ranging over four billion years, Benton weaves together the latest findings on fossils, earth history, evolutionary biology, and many other fields to highlight the great leaps that enabled life to evolve from microbe to human--big breakthroughs that made whole new ways of life possible--including cell division and multicellularity, hard skeletons, the move to land, the origin of forests, the move to the air. He describes the mass extinctions, especially the Permian, which obliterated 90% of life, and he sheds light on the origins of human beings, and of the many hominids that went before us. He ends by pointing out that studying the past helps us to predict the future: what happens if the atmosphere warms by 5 degrees? What happens if we destroy much of the biodiversity on Earth? These things have happened before, Benton notes. We need only look to the distant past to know the future of life on Earth.

About the Series: Combining authority with wit, accessibility, and style, Very Short Introductions offer an introduction to some of life's most interesting topics. Written by experts for the newcomer, they demonstrate the finest contemporary thinking about the central problems and issues in hundreds of key topics, from philosophy to Freud, quantum theory to Islam.

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About the Author:


Michael J. Benton is Head of the Department of Earth Sciences at the University of Bristol. He has written some fifty books, ranging from children's dinosaur and palaeontology books to standard textbooks.

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Michael J. Benton
Editorial: Oxford University Press, United Kingdom (2008)
ISBN 10: 0199226326 ISBN 13: 9780199226320
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Descripción Oxford University Press, United Kingdom, 2008. Paperback. Estado de conservación: New. Language: English . Brand New Book. There are few stories more remarkable than the evolution of life on earth. This Very Short Introduction presents a succinct guide to the key episodes in that story - from the very origins of life four million years ago to the extraordinary diversity of species around the globe today. Beginning with an explanation of the controversies surrounding the birth of life itself, each following chapter tells of a major breakthrough that made new forms of life possible: including sex and multicellularity, hard skeletons, and the move to land. Along the way, we witness the greatest mass extinction, the first forests, the rise of modern ecosystems, and, most recently, conscious humans. Introducing ideas from a range of scientific disciplines, from evolutionary biology and earth history, to geochemistry, palaeontology, and systematics, Michael Benton explains how modern science pieces the evidence in this vast evolutionary puzzle together, to build up an accessible and up-to-date picture of the key developments in the history of life on earth. ABOUT THE SERIES: The Very Short Introductions series from Oxford University Press contains hundreds of titles in almost every subject area. These pocket-sized books are the perfect way to get ahead in a new subject quickly. Our expert authors combine facts, analysis, perspective, new ideas, and enthusiasm to make interesting and challenging topics highly readable. Nº de ref. de la librería AOP9780199226320

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Michael J. Benton
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Descripción Oxford University Press, United Kingdom, 2008. Paperback. Estado de conservación: New. Language: English . Brand New Book. There are few stories more remarkable than the evolution of life on earth. This Very Short Introduction presents a succinct guide to the key episodes in that story - from the very origins of life four million years ago to the extraordinary diversity of species around the globe today. Beginning with an explanation of the controversies surrounding the birth of life itself, each following chapter tells of a major breakthrough that made new forms of life possible: including sex and multicellularity, hard skeletons, and the move to land. Along the way, we witness the greatest mass extinction, the first forests, the rise of modern ecosystems, and, most recently, conscious humans. Introducing ideas from a range of scientific disciplines, from evolutionary biology and earth history, to geochemistry, palaeontology, and systematics, Michael Benton explains how modern science pieces the evidence in this vast evolutionary puzzle together, to build up an accessible and up-to-date picture of the key developments in the history of life on earth. ABOUT THE SERIES: The Very Short Introductions series from Oxford University Press contains hundreds of titles in almost every subject area. These pocket-sized books are the perfect way to get ahead in a new subject quickly. Our expert authors combine facts, analysis, perspective, new ideas, and enthusiasm to make interesting and challenging topics highly readable. Nº de ref. de la librería AOP9780199226320

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Descripción Oxford University Press. Estado de conservación: New. 0199226326 Brand New, Choose Expedited shipping for GUARANTEED delivery within 4-5 business days. Standard Delivery within 6-14 business days. We may not ship to PO Box, APO , FPO Address, please contact us. Customer satisfaction guaranteed. Nº de ref. de la librería EO_9780199226320

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Descripción Oxford University Press. PAPERBACK. Estado de conservación: New. 0199226326 US STUDENT EDITION - Free Tracking number with every purchase. Satisfaction guaranteed. Orders ship within 1-2 business days. (Hawaii,Alaska, Puerto Rico and APO's, allow additional time for delivery.). Nº de ref. de la librería Z0199226326ZN

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Michael J. Benton
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Descripción Oxford University Press, 2008. Soft cover. Estado de conservación: Brand New. Brand New. Nº de ref. de la librería 008536

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MICHAEL J. BENTON
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Descripción Oxford University Press. Paper back. Estado de conservación: New. Nº de ref. de la librería 373303

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Michael J. Benton
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Descripción Oxford University Press, United Kingdom, 2008. Paperback. Estado de conservación: New. 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. There are few stories more remarkable than the evolution of life on earth. This Very Short Introduction presents a succinct guide to the key episodes in that story - from the very origins of life four million years ago to the extraordinary diversity of species around the globe today. Beginning with an explanation of the controversies surrounding the birth of life itself, each following chapter tells of a major breakthrough that made new forms of life possible: including sex and multicellularity, hard skeletons, and the move to land. Along the way, we witness the greatest mass extinction, the first forests, the rise of modern ecosystems, and, most recently, conscious humans. Introducing ideas from a range of scientific disciplines, from evolutionary biology and earth history, to geochemistry, palaeontology, and systematics, Michael Benton explains how modern science pieces the evidence in this vast evolutionary puzzle together, to build up an accessible and up-to-date picture of the key developments in the history of life on earth. ABOUT THE SERIES: The Very Short Introductions series from Oxford University Press contains hundreds of titles in almost every subject area. These pocket-sized books are the perfect way to get ahead in a new subject quickly. Our expert authors combine facts, analysis, perspective, new ideas, and enthusiasm to make interesting and challenging topics highly readable. Nº de ref. de la librería BTE9780199226320

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MICHAEL J. BENTON
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Descripción Oxford University Press. Paperback. Estado de conservación: New. Nº de ref. de la librería OUP-9780199226320

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Descripción 2008. PAP. Estado de conservación: New. New Book. Shipped from US within 10 to 14 business days. Established seller since 2000. Nº de ref. de la librería VU-9780199226320

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