School Library Journal - School Library JournalGr 7 Up-Nineteen selections are arranged in roughly chronological order, beginning with ancient Greek philosophers whose ideas about nature hinted at evolutionary theories to come. The contributions made by Darwin's grandfather Erasmus Darwin; French biologist Lamarck; and Charles Darwin's contemporary, Alfred Russel Wallace, are described, often using the scientists' own words. An account of Darwin's experience aboard the Beagle leads to a selection from his famous publication in which he explains what has come to be known as the "survival of the fittest" process. William Jennings Bryan's objections to the teaching of evolution in public schools complete this section. The author then fleshes out evolutionary theory based on discoveries and research occurring in the last century and a half. Richard Leakey and Roger Lewin describe modern humans arising from primate origins. Two essays present creationist arguments against evolution, and two more rebut them. Finally, three selections present recent perspectives on the mechanisms of evolution, including the "Red Queen" theory, a feminist view of the important role of mothers in shaping evolution, and an evolutionary-based approach to medicine. All of the articles are substantial enough to give a clear picture of their main points. A lengthy index offers detailed access. This solid survey provides a good overview with manageable amounts of primary-source materials that would be dauntingly difficult to comprehend in their entirety.-Ann G. Brouse, Steele Memorial Library, Elmira, NY Copyright 2005 Reed Business Information.
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