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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.
Table of Contents
|Becoming a Naturalist|
|Layers of the Past||p. 15|
|An Age of Dinosaurs||p. 29|
|A School a Minute||p. 39|
|In the Natural World||p. 49|
|Going South||p. 77|
|Learning to Love the Bomb||p. 95|
|On the Road to Chiapas||p. 105|
|The Masked Messenger||p. 125|
|Finding Evolution, Founding Evo-Devo|
|Evolution as Science||p. 139|
|Dining with Darwin||p. 149|
|Life with Sea Urchins||p. 169|
|Embryos Evolving||p. 183|
|Evolution in the Tasman Sea||p. 201|
|An Alternate Present||p. 217|
|Biology Meets Fossils||p. 229|
|Strange New World|
|Darwin's Day in Court||p. 251|
|Creationist Makeovers||p. 261|
|Evolution Matters||p. 281|
|Selected Bibliography||p. 305|
|Table of Contents provided by Ingram. All Rights Reserved.|