Carl Sagan's Cosmic Connection: An Extraterrestrial Perspective / Edition 2

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In 1973, Carl Sagan published The Cosmic Connection, a daring view of the universe, which rapidly became a classic work of popular science and inspired a generation of scientists and enthusiasts. This seminal work is reproduced here for a whole new generation to enjoy. In Sagan's typically lucid and lyrical style, he discusses many topics from astrophysics and solar system science, to colonization, terraforming and the search for extraterrestrials. Sagan conveys his own excitement and wonder, and relates the revelations of astronomy to the most profound human problems and concerns: issues that are just as valid today as they were thirty years ago. New to this edition are Freeman Dyson's comments on Sagan's vision and the importance of the work, Ann Druyan's assessment of Sagan's cultural significance as a champion of science, and David Morrison's discussion of the advances made since 1973 and what became of Sagan's predictions. Who knows what wonders this third millennium will reveal, but one thing is certain: Carl Sagan played a unique role in preparing us for them.
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Editorial Reviews

From the Publisher
"Carl Sagan is a scientist of quality, who is also a writer of quality. [With] great intelligence, wit, and insight, The Cosmic Connection is a success on every level." Washington Post

"Sagan's gift for clear and stylish explanation is a delight." New Scientist

"A perfect opener for readers new to Sagan's work....this informative text illuminates how our perspective on earth's place in the universe has evolved in the last half-century. Sagan's witty text is still a standard for stargazers as well as a reflection of how far society has to go." Publishers Weekly

Library Journal
This volume by the late Sagan won the John W. Campbell Memorial Award for best science book upon its initial publication (LJ 1/15/73). Sagan possessed a particular talent for taking something very complicated and explaining it in terms that the average person could easily understand. Humankind has long had a fascination bordering on obsession with the possibility of life beyond the boundaries of our own planet, and Sagan offers his take on extraterrestrial intelligence as well as life on Earth. This edition has been updated with a portrait of the author by his wife, plus a new introduction and an essay by science writer David Morrison assessing Sagan's theories, many of which have been proven true. Copyright 2000 Cahners Business Information.
A new edition of the 1973 book that first made science popularizer Sagan popular The original text is introduced by Templeton Prize winner Freeman Dysan. In addition collaborator and novelist Ann Druyan talks about the man himself, and science writer David Morrison describes how Sagan's views have become mainstream over the intervening quarter century. Annotation c. Book News, Inc., Portland, OR (
From The Critics
The late Carl Sagan was one of the most popular, influential, and successful interpreters of astronomy to the American public. In 1973 he published "The Cosmic Connection". He offered a daring view of the universe and his seminal work became a classic of popular science, inspiring a generation of scientists and non-specialist general readers with an enthusiasm for all aspects of science in general, and astronomy in particular. Now Cambridge University Press has reissued a new edition of Sagan's influential book, enhanced with Freeman Dyson's commentary on Sagan's vision and on the importance of "The Cosmic Connection"; Ann Dryan's assessment of Sagan's cultural significance as a champion of science; and David Morrison's discussion of the advances made over the past 30 years and what became of Sagan's predictions. Carl Sagan's Cosmic Connection is "must" reading for all Sagan fans and anyone interested in how his views and predictions have held up over the past three decades of rapid advances in the science of astronomy and the search for extraterrestrial intelligence.
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780521783033
  • Publisher: Cambridge University Press
  • Publication date: 11/28/2014
  • Series: Science Series
  • Edition description: Second Edition
  • Edition number: 2
  • Pages: 302
  • Sales rank: 696,780
  • Product dimensions: 5.98 (w) x 8.98 (h) x 0.87 (d)

Meet the Author

Carl Sagan was the David Duncan Professor of Astronomy and Space Sciences and Director of the Laboratory for Planetary Studies at Cornell University. He played a leading role in the Mariner, Viking and Voyager missions to the planets and briefed the Apollo astronauts before their flights to the Moon. He helped solve many mysteries in planetary science from the high temperature of Venus to the seasonal changes on Mars. For his unique contributions, he was awarded the NASA Medals for Exceptional Scientific Achievment and for Distinguished Public Service (twice), as well as the Tsiolkovsky Medal of the Soviet Cosmonautics Federation, the John F. Kennedy Award of the American Astronautical Society and the Arthur C. Clarke Award for Space Education.
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Table of Contents

Foreword Freeman Dyson; Personal reflections Ann Druyan; Preface; Part I. Cosmic Perspective: 1. A transitional animal; 2. The Unicorn of Cetus; 3. A message from earth; 4. A message to earth; 5. Experiments in utopias; 6. Chauvinism; 7. Space exploration as a human enterprise I. The scientific interest; 8. Space exploration as a human enterprise II. The public interest; 9. Space exploration as a human enterprise III. The historical interest; Part II. The Solar System: 10. On teaching the first grade; 11. 'The ancient and legendary Gods of old'; 12. The Venus detective story; 13. Venus is hell; 14. Science and 'intelligence'; 15. The moons of Barsoom; 16. The mountains of Mars I. Observations from earth; 17. The mountains of Mars II. Observations from space; 18. The canals of Mars; 19. The lost pictures of Mars; 20. The Ice Age and the cauldron; 21. Beginnings and ends of the Earth; 22. Terraforming the plants; 23. The exploration and utlization of the solar system; Part III. Beyond the Solar System: 24. Some of my best friends are dolphins; 25. 'Hello, central casting? Send me twenty extraterrestrials'; 26. The cosmic connection; 27. Extraterrestrial life: an idea whose time has come; 28. Has the Earth been visited?; 29. A search strategy for detecting extraterrestrial intelligence; 30. If we succeed … ; 31. Cables, drums, and seashells; 32. The night freight to the stars; 33. Astroengineering; 34. Twenty questions: a classification of cosmic civilisations; 35. Galactic cultural exchanges; 36. A passage to elsewhere; 37. Starfolk I. A Fable; 38. Starfolk II. A future; 39. Starfolk III. The cosmic Cheshire cats; Epilog David Morrison; Index.
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Customer Reviews

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Sort by: Showing 1 Customer Reviews
  • Anonymous

    Posted October 19, 2000

    A Very Good Extraterrestrial Perspective

    This first attempt by Dr. Sagan to popularize Science in an understandable form to the General Public really succeeds where no other Science publication before could. All the information is laid out in an easy to understand manner that even a grade school student could understand. The illustrations in the book are also a tremendous help, but it's a shame that they could not be printed in color. Dr. Sagan knows what he is talking about and has a good start on an educational platform that should be used in our schools today. This is a GREAT book. Read it.

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