Download Charles Darwin and the Evolution Revolution by Rebecca Stefoff PDF

By Rebecca Stefoff

At the foundation OF SPECIES, released in 1858, remodeled our view of the area and made Charles Darwin some of the most arguable figures in technology. This new biography appears on the individual in the back of the talk whose earth-shaking discoveries and concepts stay as fascinating and engaging as cutting-edge headlines. forty seven photographs.

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Extra resources for Charles Darwin and the Evolution Revolution

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Dr. Robert had said, “If you can find any man of common-sense who advises you to In a letter dated August 31, 1831, Darwin told his father that his uncle, Josiah Wedgwood II, was in favor of the Beagle voyage. Dr. Robert thereupon gave Darwin permission to make the trip—thus changing the course of scientific history. ” To Darwin’s great joy, his uncle Josiah Wedgwood II—whom Dr. Robert had always considered very sensible—thought the voyage would be a good thing. It would let Darwin see something of the world and expand his scientific work at the same time.

A few years after Darwin left Edinburgh, he would be profoundly influenced by an important new book that supported Hutton’s vision of deep time. While geologists were delving into the distant past, biologists were challenging the orthodox notions about life. Traditionally, the forms of living things had been viewed as fixed and unchanging. Both religion and natural history arranged the various species neatly in a ladder of life. At the bottom of the ladder were “low” creatures such as earthworms and insects.

Had God performed a separate act of creation for each continent? A few scholars, seeing how easily farmers and stock breeders created new varieties of fruit, flowers, and poultry, realized that species were fluid and changeable, not fixed and unchanging. Darwin’s own grandfather, Erasmus Darwin, had this insight. So did JeanBaptiste Lamarck (1744–1829), a French zoologist-philosopher who wrote that species adapt, or change, to fit their environment. But Lamarck could not convincingly describe how these changes took place.

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