River Out of Eden
By Richard Dawkins, Richard Dawkins
The No.1 SUNDAY TIMES bestseller. A fascinating explanation of how evolution works, from bestselling author of THE GOD DELUSION, Richard Dawkins.The river of Dawkins's title is a river of DNA, flowing through time from the beginning of life on earth to the present - and onwards. Dawkins explains that DNA must be thought of as the most sophisticated information system imaginable: 'Life is just bytes and bytes of information,' he writes. Using this perspective, he describes the mechanisms by which evolution has taken place, gradually but inexorably, over a period of three thousand million years. It is the story of how evolution happens, rather than a narrative of what has actually happened in evolution. He discusses current views on the process of human evolution, including the idea that we all trace back to a comparatively recent African 'Eve', and speculates that the 'information explosion' that was unleashed on Earth when DNA came into being has almost certainly happened in other places in the universe.
Right Hand, Left Hand
By Chris McManus
Winner of the Aventis Science Book Prize. 'A scientific detective story, a brilliant cross between Edgar Allan Poe and Gray's anatomy' J G Ballard, New Stateman Books of the Year- Why are most people right-handed? Do left-handers behave differently from right-handers?- Why is the heart on the left-hand side of the body?- Why is each side of the human brain so different?- Why do the British drive on the left? Why do European languages go from left to right, while Arabic ones read the other way?- Why do clocks go clockwise?- What is the relationship between handedness and speech disorders, such as stuttering?RIGHT HAND, LEFT HAND uses sources as diverse as the paintings of Rembrandt and the sculpture of Michelangelo, the behaviour of Canadian cichlid fish and the story of early cartography. Modern cognitive science, the history of the Wimbledon tennis championship and the biographies of great musicians are also used to explain the vast repertoire of 'left-right' symbolism that permeates our everyday lives.