The universe within : discovering the common history of rocks, planets, and people

by Shubin, Neil.

Format: Print Book 2013
Availability: Available at 15 Libraries 15 of 16 copies
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CLP - Allegheny Regional Non-Fiction Collection QE28.S526 2013x
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Carnegie Library of McKeesport Nonfiction 550 Sh91
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Monroeville Public Library Non-fiction 550 SHUBIN
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Mt. Lebanon Public Library Non-Fiction 550 Shu
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Pleasant Hills Public Library Nonfiction 550 S56
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Sewickley Public Library Nonfiction 550 SHU 2013
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Upper St. Clair Township Library Non-fiction STAFF USE
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Summary

** Kirkus Best Books of the Year (2013)**

From one of our finest and most popular science writers, and the best-selling author of Your Inner Fish, comes the answer to a scientific mystery as big as the world itself: How are the events that formed our solar system billions of years ago embedded inside each of us?

In Your Inner Fish, Neil Shubin delved into the amazing connections between human bodies--our hands, heads, and jaws--and the structures in fish and worms that lived hundreds of millions of years ago. In The Universe Within, with his trademark clarity and exuberance, Shubin takes an even more expansive approach to the question of why we look the way we do. Starting once again with fossils, he turns his gaze skyward, showing us how the entirety of the universe's fourteen-billion-year history can be seen in our bodies. As he moves from our very molecular composition (a result of stellar events at the origin of our solar system) through the workings of our eyes, Shubin makes clear how the evolution of the cosmos has profoundly marked our own bodies.

WITH BLACK-AND-WHITE LINE DRAWINGS THROUGHOUT

Published Reviews
Booklist Review: "*Starred Review* Walt Whitman yawped, I contain multitudes, and in Your Inner Fish (2008), Shubin confirmed him by demonstrating how the evolution of life on earth is inscribed in the human body. Now Shubin shows that all creation, from the big bang on, is packed in there, too. Hard to swallow? Well, ingestion had little to do with it. But analogize rocks and bodies, both of which bear the signature of the great events that shaped them. Shubin relates the discoveries of eight such events and their signatures. The big bang gave us the atoms of our bodies. The formation of the solar system, by allowing earth so much water, helped determine our size, shape, and functionality. The big whack that gouged the moon out of the earth established the rhythms of everything from days and months to each person's sleep cycle and cell division. The manufacture of oxygen by single-celled creatures licensed the growth of bigger ones, such as ourselves, and also their aging. Plate tectonics set the limits of our habitation, from the womb to the Tibetan plateau. Catastrophes besides the moon-gouging shaped our innate adaptability. The global carbon cycle that enabled the ice ages colored our vision. Climate change molded our genes. In short, universal history made us what we are. Wow.--Olson, Ray Copyright 2010 Booklist"
From Booklist, Copyright (c) American Library Association. Used with permission.
Publisher's Weekly Review: "University of Chicago paleontologist Shubin wrote about the fishy origins of humanity in 2009's Your Inner Fish. In his new book, he goes farther back and further out, explaining how humans bear the markings of cosmic phenomena; as he puts it, "Written inside us is the birth of the stars." Here, the author surveys everything from glints in "Greenlandic rocks" to the spreading signs of supernovae to reveal "deep ties to the forces that shaped our bodies." He demonstrates how mammals owe their "high-energy lifestyle[s]" to oxygen released hundreds of millions of years ago as continents spread apart, and how color vision arose after continental drift cooled the planet, diversified flora, and resulted in biological competition that favored those organisms who could identify nutritious plants according to hue ("Every time you admire a richly colorful view, you can thank India for slamming into Asia"). Shubin is a leading proponent of the fusion of paleontology, developmental genetics, and genomics, and the result of his efforts is a volume of truly inspired science writing. Appropriately vast in scope, Shubin deftly balances breadth and depth in his search for a "sublimely beautiful truth." Photos & illus. Agent: Katinka Matson, John Brockman, Max Brockman, and Russell Weinberger, Brockman Inc. (Jan.) (c) Copyright PWxyz, LLC. All rights reserved."
(c) Copyright PWxyz, LLC. All rights reserved
Additional Information
Subjects Geology.
Petrology.
Earth (Planet) -- Origin.
Publisher New York :Pantheon Books,2013
Edition 1st ed.
Language English
Description x, 225 pages : illustrations, maps ; 22 cm
Bibliography Notes Includes bibliographical references (pages [191]-208) and index.
ISBN 9780307378439 (hardcover)
0307378438 (hardcover)
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