Stephen Jay Gould: Reflections on His View of Life

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Considered by many during his lifetime as the most well-known scientist in the world, Stephen Jay Gould left an enormous and influential body of work. A Harvard professor of paleontology, evolutionary biology, and the history of science, Gould provided major insights into our understanding of the history of life. He helped to reinvigorate paleontology, launch macroevolution on a new course, and provide a context in which the biological developmental stages of an organism's embryonic growth could be integrated into an understanding of evolution. This book is a set of reflections on the many areas of Gould's intellectual life by the people who knew and understood him best: former students and prominent close collaborators. Mostly a critical assessment of his legacy, the chapters are not technical contributions but rather offer a combination of intellectual bibliography, personal memoir, and reflection on Gould's diverse scientific achievements. The work includes the most complete bibliography of his writings to date and offers a multi-dimensional view of Gould's life-work not to be found in any other volume.

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Editorial Reviews

From the Publisher
"He [Gould] emerges as a genius of sorts, but - appropriately for his geologist beginnings - with feet not unmarked by clay." - Nature

"One of the first important works in what may someday be an extensive field of Gouldiana. The wonderful collection of essays reflecting on Gould's view of life, edited by his former students, presents a variety of insightful assessments of his work, while also giving us a glimpse of the man himself through the eyes of people who knew him well - his students and close colleagues. All the authors who a clear affection for Gould and an admiration for his accomplishments. However, none are servile followers, unwilling to criticize (Gould would have admired them for this). Thus, this volume is not, as the editors note their preface, an attempt at hagiography, but rather, a serious engagement with Gould's intellectual legacy." — Monthly Review

"An interesting collection of essays."—American Scientist

"There are many perceptive and useful essays in this collection, and anyone interested in the development of 20th -century evolutionary thought will be fascinated by their insights."—Reports of the National Center for Science Education

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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780195373202
  • Publisher: Oxford University Press
  • Publication date: 11/5/2008
  • Edition description: New Edition
  • Pages: 416
  • Product dimensions: 6.20 (w) x 9.40 (h) x 1.30 (d)

Meet the Author

Warren D. Allmon is Director of the Paleontological Research Institution in Ithaca, NY, and Professor in the Department of Earth and Atmospheric Sciences at Cornell University.

Patricia H. Kelley is Professor of Geology at the University of North Carolina, Wilmington.

Robert M. Ross is Associate Director for Outreach at the Paleontological Research Institution, Ithaca, NY.

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Table of Contents

1 The Structure of Gould: Happenstance, Humanism, History, and the Unity of His View of Life Warren D. Allmon Allmon, Warren D. 3

2 Diversity in the Fossil Record and StephenJay Gould's Evolving View of the History of Life Richard K. Bambach Bambach, Richard K. 69

3 The Legacy of Punctuated Equilibrium Dana H. Geary Geary, Dana H. 127

4 A Tree Grows in Queens: Stephen Jay Gould and Ecology Warren D. Allmon Allmon, Warren D. Paul J. Morris Morris, Paul J. Linda C. Ivany Ivany, Linda C. 147

5 Stephen Jay Gould's Winnowing Fork: Science, Religion, and Creationism Patricia H. Kelley Kelley, Patricia H. 171

6 Top-Tier: Stephen Jay Gould and Mass Extinctions David C. Kendrick Kendrick, David C. 189

7 Stephen Jay Gould - What Does It Mean to Be a Radical? Richard C. Lewontin Lewontin, Richard C. Richard Levins Levins, Richard 199

8 Evolutionary Theory and the Social Uses of Biology Philip Kitcher Kitcher, Philip 207

9 Stephen Jay Gould's Evolving, Hierarchical Thoughts on Stasis Bruce S. Lieberman Lieberman, Bruce S. 227

10 Stephen Jay Gould: The Scientist as Educator Robert M. Ross Ross, Robert M. 243

11 Stephen Jay Gould: Remembering a Geologist Jill S. Schneiderman Schneiderman, Jill S. 263

12 Gould's Odyssey: Form May Follow Function, or Former Function, and All Species Are Equal (Especially Bacteria), but History Is Trumps R. D. K. Thomas Thomas, R. D. K. 271

13 The Tree of Life: Stephen Jay Gould's Contributions to Systematics Margaret M. Yacobucci Yacobucci, Margaret M. 291

14 Genetics and Development: Good as Gould Robert L. Dorit Dorit, Robert L. 313

15 Bibliography: Stephen Jay Gould Warren D. Allmon Allmon, Warren D.335

Notes 381

Index 387

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Sort by: Showing 1 Customer Reviews
  • Posted July 18, 2009

    more from this reviewer

    I Also Recommend:

    Punctuated memories

    Good for the well-read Gould enthusiast. Fine deliverly of the developement of the theory of Punctuated Equilibrium, however somewhat scant on Eldridge's contributions. Essay's provide glimpses of Gould's evoluntionary theories and personal experiences in academic settings along with snapshots of his academic influence on various individuals who studied or worked with him as his theories developed.

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