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The Greatest Show on Earth: The Evidence for Evolution (2009)

por Richard Dawkins

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3,998772,300 (4.18)82
Sifting through rich layers of scientific evidence, Dawkins' "The Greatest Show on Earth" is a stunning counterattack on advocates of "Intelligent Design," explaining the evidence for evolution while exposing the absurdities of the creationist "argument."
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Mostrando 1-5 de 77 (seguinte | mostrar todos)
Highly recommended read regarding evolution and the evidence for it. RD brilliantly explains how to pay notice to similarities between species, how cells and organisms work or do what they do and how it impacts evolution and growth. Regarding the element of religion and creationism, RD keeps his cool when comparing this to evolution. He is one passionate man about evolution, or as he puts it, the truth. This book is to some extent not complete, as RD has touched upon other subjects/elements in his previous books. But somehow you don't have to have read them to understand TGSOE. ( )
  TechThing | Jan 22, 2021 |
This is one of those books where I have to differentiate between readability and content.

The content, what we know that tells us evolution is right, is very interesting which makes this book well worth reading by someone uncertain or someone that feels they lose out in arguments because they are missing details.

The readability on the other hand is not as great. I don't know if it is intentional but the author keeps repeating himself within a couple of paragraphs. It might be an attempt to hammer something into the mind of the reader, but I found it annoying and it reminded me of some books that are written to a page count rather than a content mass.

I will still give it four stars out of five since I learned a lot through the book.

And a quick spoiler. Things that support evolution include, but are not limited to: Layering of fossils. Dating of fossils. Visible changes in isolated populations in just a few decades. Our ability to modify dogs and cows. The weird mistakes found in body designs. The similarity of species. The lack of similarity between flying mammals (bats) and flying dinosaurs (birds). The weirdness of some animals that seem to have migrated from sea to land and then back to sea. And so on.

The author is quite upset that so few people know about this in certain countries and I can understand him. ( )
  bratell | Dec 25, 2020 |
A bit repetitive, but excellent, as always. Dawkins explains things several different ways to ensure that his facts are clear.

The book is not really for people who are into a divine explanation of life on earth. He says at the beginning that it isn't for creationists. He cuts some slack to people who want to adhere to some sort of push of a mysterious hand at the very beginning of life. The book makes it very clear that it is for people who are interested in being able to explain evolution and the origin of life to others.

I learned quite a bit. There were things that I didn't fully understand before (like carbon dating) that I know have a much better grasp upon. ( )
  authenticjoy | Nov 15, 2020 |
Very good albeit it high level review of the evidence for evolution.

Dawkins never fails to disappoint and this book is no exception. A high level review of the evidence four the theory of evolution is well formed and explained for all. Even though very high level it does suffice as an introduction. The resources cited are wonderful and extensive. ( )
  ejakub | Oct 19, 2020 |
This book presents some of the evidence for evolution.
Chapter one Defines theory, hypothesis, fact and theorem and coins theorem; putting evolution alongside heliocentrism.
Chapters two and three How men bred breeds by selecting what was desired. Compared what man has achieved in a few 1000 years to what might be possible in millions of years.
Chapter 4 How do we know how much time was available? Radioactive clocks.
Chapter 5 Gives examples of evolution we can see eg in bacteria, guppies, lizards and hunted elephants.Chapter 6Considers various objections to evolution including gaps in the fossil records and missing links.Chapter 7Examines fossil ancestors of humans and chimpanzees.Chapter 8 Embryology shows what can be achieved in small steps from a single cell. Cells do what they do internally and externally in relation with others in accordance to local rules.
Chapter 9 The importance of islands in developing strains and new species.
Chapter 10 Skeletal similarities indicate common ancestry as do genetics. Molecular clocks.
Chapter 11 Tells evolutionary history read from the bodies of current animals.
Chapter 12 How resource limits cause inter- and intra-competition of species by wasteful arms races. Evolutionary rationale for pain and suffering.
Chapter 13 Dawkins summaries his book using the final paragraph of Darwin's Origin of Species which he extols and interprets like a favourite verse of scripture. He chooses to refer to the first edition which misses out the phrase "by the Creator"
Appendix: Laments evolution is still not generally accepted
  NeilT | Dec 8, 2019 |
Mostrando 1-5 de 77 (seguinte | mostrar todos)
This brings me to the intellectual flaw, or maybe it’s a fault just of tone, in Dawkins’s otherwise eloquent paean to evolution: he has let himself slip into being as dogmatic as his opponents. He has become the Savonarola of science, condemning the doubters of evolution as “history-­deniers” who are “worse than ignorant” and “deluded to the point of perversity.” This is not the language of science, or civility. Creationists insist evolution is only a theory, Dawkins that it’s only a fact. Neither claim is correct.
 
The Greatest Show on Earth is Dawkins on top form: unambiguous, beautifully argued, with prose flowing like quicksilver.
adicionada por jlelliott | editarNature, Lawrence D. Hurst (sítio Web pago) (Oct 1, 2009)
 
Though he looses a shock-and-awe flurry of evidentiary darts (natural selection, fossil records, molecular biology, and much more), he also mutes some of the shriller tendencies that have unhinged—or at least made hectoring and unlovely—his previous works. The result is a sweeping, wryly joyous case for rationality, empiricism, and no God on this green Earth.
adicionada por Shortride | editarThe Atlantic (Oct 1, 2009)
 
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Preface
The evidence for evolution grows by the day, and has never been stronger. At the same time, paradoxically, ill-informed opposition is also stronger than I can remember. This book is my personal summary of the evidence that the 'theory' of evolution is actually a fact—as incontrovertible a fact as any in science.
Imagine that you are a teacher of Roman history and the Latin language, anxious to impart your enthusiasm for the ancient world—for the elegiacs of Ovid and the odes of Horace, the sinewy economy of Latin grammar as exhibited in the oratory of Cicero, the strategic niceties of the Punic Wars, the generalship of Julius Caesar and the voluptuous excesses of the later emperors.
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Sifting through rich layers of scientific evidence, Dawkins' "The Greatest Show on Earth" is a stunning counterattack on advocates of "Intelligent Design," explaining the evidence for evolution while exposing the absurdities of the creationist "argument."

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