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The Cambridge Companion to the 'Origin of Species'

$113.00 (P)

Part of Cambridge Companions to Philosophy

Michael Ruse, Mark Largent, Robert Olby, Robert J. Richards, Philip Sloan, David Kohn, Abigail Lustig, Sandra Herbert, David Norman, Peter Bowler, Richard Richards, Lynn K. Nyhart, Vassiliki Betty Smocovitis, David Depew, John Hedley Brooke, Gillian Beer, Naomi Beck, Tim Lewens, Michèle Kohler, Chris Kohler
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  • Date Published: November 2008
  • availability: Available
  • format: Hardback
  • isbn: 9780521870795

$ 113.00 (P)

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About the Authors
  • The Origin of Species by Charles Darwin is universally recognized as one of the most important science books ever written. Published in 1859, it was here that Darwin argued for both the fact of evolution and the mechanism of natural section. The Origin of Species is also a work of great cultural and religious significance, in that Darwin maintained that all organisms, including humans, are part of a natural process of growth from simple forms. This Companion commemorates the 150th anniversary of the publication of the Origin of Species and examines its main arguments. Drawing on the expertise of leading authorities in the field, it also provides the contexts – religious, social, political, literary, and philosophical – in which the Origin was composed. Written in a clear and friendly yet authoritative manner, this volume will be essential reading for both scholars and students More broadly, it will appeal to general readers who want to learn more about one of the most important and controversial books of modern times.

    • Timely: appearing on the 150th anniversary of the Origin of Species
    • Comprehensive: covers the whole of the Origin providing the religious, social, political, literary and philosophical contexts
    • Will be appreciated by readers at many levels, from experts to those with a general interest in Darwin
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    Reviews & endorsements

    "Will appeal to naturalists, social scientists, and people in the humanities."
    J.S. Schwartz, Choice

    "Unquestionably, the thoroughness of [The Cambridge Companion to Darwin, 2nd Edition and The Cambridge Companion to the 'Origin of Species'] will be caviar for professional scholars. But they will also appeal to a wider readership for offering clear and up-to-date expositions of the historical developments and theoretical principles of Darwin’s evolutionary thinking. ... these volumes are undeniably a great introduction to Darwin, his ideas and his legacies. With the wealth of historical and philosophical analyses, and the great variety of contributions covering major problems within the field, they constitute an indispensable tool for any teacher or student of Darwin and Darwinism. The general public will find a complete presentation of Darwin’s thinking, while the scholarly can enjoy a number of revisionist claims sure to provoke responses, critical and otherwise." -
    THIERRY HOQUET, British Journal of the History of Science

    "Charles Darwin's On the Origin of Species occupies a remarkable place in the history of science. No other scientific work of comparable standing was written for a general readership. No other has had quite the widespread impact, been so frequently translated, or is so easily available today in bookshops...." -
    W.F. Bynum, Victorian Studies

    "Most satisfyingly, as each writer engages with a particular section of the Origin or a particular problem, the reader is made aware of alternative possible interpretations and of the reasons that Darwin’s theory must be understood as profoundly bound up in an extraordinary number of particular details that in public debate"
    -George Levine,Rutgers University about evolution and Natural Selection are rarely alluded to."

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    Product details

    • Date Published: November 2008
    • format: Hardback
    • isbn: 9780521870795
    • length: 424 pages
    • dimensions: 229 x 152 x 27 mm
    • weight: 0.79kg
    • availability: Available
  • Table of Contents

    1. The origin of the Origin Michael Ruse
    2. Darwin's analogy between natural and artificial selection Mark Largent
    3. Variation and inheritance Robert Olby
    4. Darwin's theory of natural selection and its moral purpose Robert J. Richards
    5. Originating species: Darwin on the species problem Philip Sloan
    6. Darwin's keystone: the principle of divergence David Kohn
    7. Darwin's difficulties Abigail Lustig
    8. Darwin's geology and his perspective on the fossil record Sandra Herbert and David Norman
    9. Geographical distribution Peter Bowler
    10. Classification Richard Richards
    11. Embryology and morphology Lynn K. Nyhart
    12. Darwin's botany in On the Origin of Species Vassiliki Betty Smocovitis
    13. The rhetoric of the Origin of Species David Depew
    14. 'Laws impressed on matter by the Creator'? The Origin and the question of religion John Hedley Brooke
    15. 'Lineal Descendants': the Origin's literary progeny Gillian Beer
    16. The Origin and political thought: from liberalism to Marxism Naomi Beck
    17. The Origin and philosophy Tim Lewens
    18. The Origin of Species as a book Michèle Kohler and Chris Kohler.

  • Instructors have used or reviewed this title for the following courses

    • Conceptual Issues in Evolutionary Biology
    • Darwin
    • History and Philosophy of Biology
    • Interdiciplinary Studies
    • The Darwinian Revolution
  • Editor

    Michael Ruse, Florida State University
    Michael Ruse is the Lucyle T. Werkmeister Professor of Philosophy and Director of the Program in History and Philosophy of Science at Florida State University. The author or editor of more than 30 books, including Can a Darwinian be a Christian? and Darwinism and its Discontents, he is a Fellow of the Royal Society of Canada and the recipient of several honorary degrees.


    Robert J. Richards , University of Chicago
    Robert J. Richards is Morris Fishbein Professor of the History of Science and director of the Fishbein Center for the History of Science and Medicine at the University of Chicago. He has held major fellowships for work in history and philosophy of biology and is the author is many books, including Darwin and the Emergence of Evolutionary Theories of Mind and Behavior and The Tragic Sense of Life: Ernst Haeckel and the Struggle over Evolutionary Thought.


    Michael Ruse, Mark Largent, Robert Olby, Robert J. Richards, Philip Sloan, David Kohn, Abigail Lustig, Sandra Herbert, David Norman, Peter Bowler, Richard Richards, Lynn K. Nyhart, Vassiliki Betty Smocovitis, David Depew, John Hedley Brooke, Gillian Beer, Naomi Beck, Tim Lewens, Michèle Kohler, Chris Kohler

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