Natural Selection and Beyond: The Intellectual Legacy of Alfred Russel Wallace

Hardcover (Print)
Buy New
Buy New from
Used and New from Other Sellers
Used and New from Other Sellers
from $16.79
Usually ships in 1-2 business days
(Save 79%)
Other sellers (Hardcover)
  • All (9) from $16.79   
  • New (4) from $36.74   
  • Used (5) from $16.79   


Alfred Russel Wallace (1823 - 1913) was one of the late nineteenth century's most potent intellectual forces. His link to Darwin as co-discoverer of the principle of natural selection alone would have secured him a place in history, but he went on to complete work entitling him to recognition as the 'father' of modern biogeographical studies, as a pioneer in the field of astrobiology, and as an important contributor to subjects as far-ranging as glaciology, land reform, anthropology and ethnography, and epidemiology. Beyond this, many are coming to regard Wallace as the pre-eminent field biologist, collector, and naturalist of tropical regions. Add to that the fact that he was a vocal supporter of spiritualism, socialism, and the rights of the ordinary person, and it quickly becomes apparent that Wallace was a man of extraordinary breadth of attention. Yet his work in many of these areas is still not well known, and still less recognized is his relevance to current day research almost 100 years after his death.

This rich collection of writings by more than twenty historians and scientists reviews and reflects on the work that made Wallace a famous man in his own time, and a figure of extraordinary influence and continuing interest today.

Read More Show Less

Editorial Reviews

From the Publisher

"This book is a must have for those interested in the life and career of Alfred Russel Wallace."--Birdbooker Report

Read More Show Less

Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780199239160
  • Publisher: Oxford University Press, USA
  • Publication date: 1/15/2009
  • Pages: 448
  • Product dimensions: 7.00 (w) x 9.70 (h) x 1.90 (d)

Meet the Author

Charles H. Smith is Professor of Library Public Information Services at Western Kentucky University. His research interests include biogeography and evolutionary theory, systems theory, bibliography, and Alfred Russel Wallace. He has published four books, nearly a hundred journal articles and reviews, and currently maintains the website The Alfred Russel Wallace Page at

His previous book publications are Alfred Russel Wallace: An Anthology of his Shorter Writings; Biodiversity Studies: A Bibliographic Review; Alfred Russel Wallace: Writings on Evolution, 1843-1912; and Alfred Russel Wallace: Evolution of an Evolutionist.

George Beccaloni is Curator in the Department of Entomology at the Natural History Museum, London. A Fellow of the Linnean Society of London and Royal Entomological Society of London, he also set up the A. R. Wallace Memorial Fund. His publications include numerous research articles and the following books (as co-editor): Hostplants of the Moth and Butterfly Caterpillars of the Oriental Region; Hostplants of the moth and butterfly caterpillars of America north of Mexico; and Host-plants of the Neotropical Butterflies: A Catalogue.

Read More Show Less

Table of Contents

Foreword Peter Bowler vii

Preface Earl of Cranbrook ix

List of Figures xx

List of Plates xxii

List of Tables xxiii

List of Contributors xxiv

Introduction 1

1 Homes Sweet Homes: A Biographical Tour of Wallace's Many Places of Residence George Beccaloni 7

Part I In the World of Nature

2 "Ardent Beetle-Hunters": Natural History, Collecting, and the Theory of Evolution Andrew Berry 47

3 Theory and Practice in the Field: Wallace's Work in Natural History (1844-1858) Melinda Bonnie Fagan 66

4 Wallace's Annotated Copy of the Darwin-Wallace Paper on Natural Selection George Beccaloni 91

5 Wallace and the Species Concept of the Early Darwinians James Mallet 102

6 Direct Selection for Reproductive Isolation: The Wallace Effect and Reinforcement Norman A. Johnson 114

7 The Colours of Animals: From Wallace to the Present Day. I. Cryptic Coloration Tim Caro Sami Merilaita Martin Stevens 125

8 The Colours of Animals: From Wallace to the Present Day. II. Conspicuous Coloration. Tim Caro Geoffrey Hill Leena Lindström Michael Speed 144

9 Alfred Russel Wallace, Biogeographer Bernard Michaux 166

10 Wallace and the Great Ice Age Keith Tinkler 186

11 Wallace, Conservation, and Sustainable Development Sandra Knapp 201

Part II In the World of Man, and Worlds Beyond

12 The "Finest Butterfly in the World?": Wallace and His Literary Legacy Peter Raby 223

13 Wallace and Owenism Gregory Claeys 235

14 Wallace, Women, and Eugenics Diane B. Paul 263

15 Out of "the Limbo of 'Unpractical Politics'": The Origins and Essence of Wallace's Advocacy of Land Nationalization David A. Stack 279

16 Alfred Russel Wallace and Anti-Vaccinationism in the Late Victorian Cultural Context, 1870-1907 Martin Fichman 305

17 The Universe and Alfred Russel Wallace Steven J. Dick 320

18 Wallace's Unfinished Business Charles H. Smith 341

19 Wallace in Wonderland James Moore 353

20 Wallace's Dilemmas: The Laws of Nature and the Human Spirit Ted Benton 368

21 Wallace, Spiritualism, and Beyond: "Change," or "No Change"? Charles H. Smith 391

References Cited 425

Works by Alfred Russel Wallace 425

Works by Other Authors 433

Index 467

Read More Show Less

Customer Reviews

Be the first to write a review
( 0 )
Rating Distribution

5 Star


4 Star


3 Star


2 Star


1 Star


Your Rating:

Your Name: Create a Pen Name or

Barnes & Review Rules

Our reader reviews allow you to share your comments on titles you liked, or didn't, with others. By submitting an online review, you are representing to Barnes & that all information contained in your review is original and accurate in all respects, and that the submission of such content by you and the posting of such content by Barnes & does not and will not violate the rights of any third party. Please follow the rules below to help ensure that your review can be posted.

Reviews by Our Customers Under the Age of 13

We highly value and respect everyone's opinion concerning the titles we offer. However, we cannot allow persons under the age of 13 to have accounts at or to post customer reviews. Please see our Terms of Use for more details.

What to exclude from your review:

Please do not write about reviews, commentary, or information posted on the product page. If you see any errors in the information on the product page, please send us an email.

Reviews should not contain any of the following:

  • - HTML tags, profanity, obscenities, vulgarities, or comments that defame anyone
  • - Time-sensitive information such as tour dates, signings, lectures, etc.
  • - Single-word reviews. Other people will read your review to discover why you liked or didn't like the title. Be descriptive.
  • - Comments focusing on the author or that may ruin the ending for others
  • - Phone numbers, addresses, URLs
  • - Pricing and availability information or alternative ordering information
  • - Advertisements or commercial solicitation


  • - By submitting a review, you grant to Barnes & and its sublicensees the royalty-free, perpetual, irrevocable right and license to use the review in accordance with the Barnes & Terms of Use.
  • - Barnes & reserves the right not to post any review -- particularly those that do not follow the terms and conditions of these Rules. Barnes & also reserves the right to remove any review at any time without notice.
  • - See Terms of Use for other conditions and disclaimers.
Search for Products You'd Like to Recommend

Recommend other products that relate to your review. Just search for them below and share!

Create a Pen Name

Your Pen Name is your unique identity on It will appear on the reviews you write and other website activities. Your Pen Name cannot be edited, changed or deleted once submitted.

Your Pen Name can be any combination of alphanumeric characters (plus - and _), and must be at least two characters long.

Continue Anonymously

    If you find inappropriate content, please report it to Barnes & Noble
    Why is this product inappropriate?
    Comments (optional)