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The Young Charles Darwin : Influences and Ideas - Keith Stewart Thomson

The Young Charles Darwin

Influences and Ideas

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What sort of person was the young naturalist who developed an evolutionary idea so logical, so dangerous, that it has dominated biological science for a century and a half? How did the quiet and shy Charles Darwin produce his theory of natural selection when many before him had started down the same path but failed? This book is the first to inquire into the range of influences and ideas, the mentors and rivals, and the formal and informal education that shaped Charles Darwin and prepared him for his remarkable career of scientific achievement. Keith Thomson concentrates on Darwin's early life as a schoolboy, a medical student at Edinburgh, a theology student at Cambridge, and a naturalist aboard the Beagle on its famous five-year voyage. Closely analyzing Darwin's "Autobiography" and scientific notebooks, the author draws a fully human portrait of Darwin for the first time: a vastly erudite and powerfully ambitious individual, self-absorbed but lacking self-confidence, hampered as much as helped by family, and sustained by a passion for philosophy and logic. Thomson's account of the birth and maturing of Darwin's brilliant theory is fascinating for the way it reveals both his genius as a scientist and the human foibles and weaknesses with which he mightily struggled.

"Thomson's "The Young Charles Darwin" is written in a highly accessible style that will appeal to a wide range of readers...There is much of value here."--;i>Review Forum on Charles Darwin and Darwiniana"--Catherine Day and James G. Lennox "Review Forum on Charles Darwin and Darwiniana "

Prefacep. vii
Acknowledgmentsp. xi
Falmouthp. 3
Antecedentsp. 10
Childhoodp. 22
Edinburghp. 32
Robert Jamesonp. 41
Mentors and Modelsp. 60
Lamarckiansp. 71
Cambridge Undergraduatep. 84
More Serious Thingsp. 101
Reading Sciencep. 116
Geology Againp. 126
HMS Beaglep. 131
Epiphaniesp. 145
Storms and Floodsp. 151
Natural Selection
First Thoughts on Evolutionp. 175
Notebook Bp. 191
Moving Forward, Living a Liep. 204
Finding His Placep. 219
First Draftsp. 227
Crisis and Resolutionp. 239
Notesp. 245
Indexp. 267
Table of Contents provided by Ingram. All Rights Reserved.

ISBN: 9780300136081
ISBN-10: 0300136080
Audience: Tertiary; University or College
Format: PDF
Language: English
Number Of Pages: 288
Published: 12th February 2009
Country of Publication: US