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Nature's Oracle The Life and Work of W. D. Hamilton



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Oxford University Press

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  • Nature's Oracle The Life and Work of W.D. Hamilton
    Nature's Oracle The Life and Work of W.D. Hamilton


W.D.Hamilton (1936-2000) was responsible for a revolution in thinkingabout evolutionary biology - a revolution that changed our understanding of lifeitself.He played a central role in the realization that what matters in evolution isnot the survival of the individual but of the survival of its genes. Thisprovided the solution to the long standing problem of animal altruism that vexedeven Darwin himself, and in due course resulted in terms like selfish genes, kinselection, and sociobiology becoming familiar to a wider public. Hamilton wenton to solve many more major problems, and open up ever new fields - he shapedmuch of our current understanding of central problems including the evolution ofsexual reproduction and ageing. He became world famous and garneredinternational prizes.But this is all in hindsight. In fact, Hamilton's recognition came late - hiscareer is a classic case of misunderstood genius. In this illuminating andmoving biography Ullica Segerstrale documents Hamilton's extraordinary life andwork, revealing a man of immense intellectual curiosity, an uncompromisingtruth-seeker, a naturalist and jungle explorer, a risk-taker, an unconventionalscientist with a poet's soul and a deep concern for life on earth and mankind'sfuture.

Author Biography

Ullica Segerstrale is Professor of Sociology at Illinois Institute of Technology, Chicago, and Chair of the Department of Social Sciences. An authority on the history and sociology of science, her books include Defenders of the Truth: The Battle for Science in the Sociobiology Debate, Beyond the
Science Wars: The Missing Discourse about Science and Society, and Nonverbal Communication: Where Nature Meets Culture.

Table of Contents

Darwin's Heir
The Garden of Memories
The Boy from the Hill
The Quest
The Struggle
The Breakthrough
Sex and Death
Jungle Fever
Strategies of Life
Expanding Inclusive Fitness
A Fighting Chance
When Leaving is Better Than Staying
Why Sex?
It is a Sick World
Healthy Choice
Cooperation Evolving
Recognition - of Kin and Kinship Theory
The Parasite Red Queen and Her Enemies
In Tune With Nature
Through a Glass Darkly
A Fountain of Ideas
Truth at Any Price
The Last Expedition
A Glimpse Through the Canopy
Table of Contents provided by Publisher. All Rights Reserved.

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