Pub. Date:
University of California Press
Life as It Is: Biology for the Public Sphere / Edition 1

Life as It Is: Biology for the Public Sphere / Edition 1

by William F. LoomisWilliam F. Loomis


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This concise, accessible book considers from a biological perspective the controversial issues of our day: abortion, euthanasia, engineered evolution, cooperativity, and the future of sustainable life on this planet. Exploring in fascinating detail the processes by which cells come into being and multiply, Loomis clearly and simply explains the latest in complex biological research. He reviews recent insights into molecular and human evolution, the role of DNA sequences in determining traits, and the biological basis for consciousness, all of which, he argues, need to be considered when making life-and-death decisions and wrestling with questions about the limits to intervention.

Product Details

ISBN-13: 9780520260016
Publisher: University of California Press
Publication date: 03/03/2008
Edition description: First Edition
Pages: 272
Product dimensions: 5.50(w) x 8.25(h) x 0.60(d)

About the Author

William F. Loomis was Distinguished Professor of Biology at the University of California, San Diego. He is the former President of the Society for Developmental Biology and an elected Fellow of the American Association for the Advancement of Science.

Table of Contents

List of Illustrations

1. The Value of Life
2. Human Potential
3. Engineered Life
4. Genomic Ícaro|Ícaro|Ícaro|Information
5. Sociobiology
6. Consciousness
7. Selfishness and Cooperativity
8. The Origin of Life and Evolution of Man
9. Sustainable Life
Epilog. Wonderful Life


What People are Saying About This

From the Publisher

"[A] highly provocative book. . . . Loomis is a careful and clear guide to the historical, social and political aspects of biology, making this overview both thorough and daring."—Publishers Weekly


"Wide-ranging, easily accessible and thought-provoking. . . . This profound and beautifully explained celebration of life deserves wide readership."—New Scientist

Customer Reviews