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Darwin: Portrait of a Genius

Darwin: Portrait of a Genius

by Paul Johnson


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A “riveting” (The Wall Street Journal) biography of one of the most influential and controversial scientists in Western history

Acclaimed historian and biographer Paul Johnson turns his keen eye on Charles Darwin, the towering figure whose work continues to spur scientific debate.

With his publication of On the Origin of Species, Darwin forever changed our concept of the world. While Johnson praises Darwin’s extraordinary skills as a natural scientist and his monumental achievements, he does not sidestep Darwin’s tragic failures as an anthropologist. Johnson argues that by applying his theory of natural selection to humans, Darwin provided a platform for the burgeoning eugenics movement. Lay readers and academics alike will enjoy this concise and unflinching exploration of Charles Darwin, a genius whose discoveries—even the flawed ones—add significant dimension to our understanding of his mind, the era in which he lived, and his everlasting impact on our world.

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Product Details

ISBN-13: 9780147509772
Publisher: Penguin Publishing Group
Publication date: 09/24/2013
Pages: 176
Product dimensions: 5.00(w) x 7.60(h) x 0.60(d)
Age Range: 18 Years

About the Author

Paul Johnson is the author of many bestselling books, including Socrates: A Man for Our Times; Jesus: A Biography from a Believer; and Churchill. He lives in London.

Table of Contents

1 A Heritage of Genius, and Its Shadow l

2 Education and Self-Education of a Scientist 15

3 The Loss of God 37

4 The Making of a Masterpiece 65

5 Among the Apes and Angels 87

6 How the Great Botanist Missed an Opportunity 111

7 Evils of Social Darwinism 123

8 Triumph and the Reversal of Natural Selection 137

Further Reading 153

Index 155

What People are Saying About This

From the Publisher

“This is a first-rate biography, one that brings Darwin and his ideas into brilliant focus.”                         
History Book Club

Customer Reviews