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TXT [Wonderful Life The Burgess Shale and the Nature of History Stephen Jay Gould] mythology

Stephen Jay Gould æ 2 Free download

High in the Canadian Rockies is a small limestone uarry formed 530 million years ago called the Burgess Shale It hold th. A decent but certainly out of date book The most interesting section is that regarding the anatomy of the Burgess biota and the historical narrative of Whittington Conway Morris and Briggs is also a highlight The technical details of chapter three might throw some readers off but I found them to be fascinatingUnfortunately most of the book is out of date Most of the weird wonders that Gould describes have been taxonomically re evaluated in the previous two decades and technical developments in systematics the concept of stem groups in cladograms now show that much Burgess biota ironically belong closer to the original classifications of Walcott Much of the biota are now considered to be stem groups of modern taxa evolutionary aunts and unclesI also found Gould s continued emphasis on the cone of increasing diversity to be uite exhausting Based on Gould s own definitions of diversity and disparity there is no fundamental problem with depicting increased diversity in modern geological eras because there simply are species Gould s diversity than in the Cambrian and Pre Cambrian Additionally Gould seems to be railing against concepts that either haven t been present in the evolutionary literature for decades perhaps centuries depiction of an evolutionary ladder or his examples of phylogenies are either strawmen or misinterpreted For example in Haeckel s illustrations Gould does not analyze the taxonomic groups represented nor does he consider that Haeckel perhaps wanted to show the phylogenies of the taxa he placed close to the top and thus gave them visual importance because after all there is only so much space on the page In cladograms and other methods of depicting phylogenies if the diagram is rooted the root is meant to depict the hypothetical last common ancestor Since clades are monophyletic all descended from a single common ancestor there is always going to be a cone of increasing diversity because the clade always depicts hierarchical branching lineages of descent The only way there would not be a cone is if there truly was a ladder within a single lineage something that Gould rightly disparages One could argue that this is because Gould was simply arguing against older methods of depicting phylogeny rather than the relatively new at the time cladistics but even these do not generally follow his pattern For example in a classic depiction of fossil horse phylogeny to use one of Gould s examples from chapter one the maximum disparity is reached in the Miocene and then scales back as it gets closer the the presentOverall the book is certainly not bad especially when it comes to the historical and anatomical aspects But in too many instances Gould is simply engaging in his typical revolutionary grandstanding and hyperbole Proceed carefully and read up to date texts as a follow up

Read Wonderful Life The Burgess Shale and the Nature of History

Wonderful Life The Burgess Shale and the Nature of History

Detail In this book Stephen Jay Gould explores what the Burgess Shale tells us about evolution and the nature of histor. Stephen Jay Gould performs a really unlikely feat in this book he makes arthropods as fascinating as dinosaurs In fact he makes a subject that could be extra ordinarily dull the process of taxonomic classification of a bunch of extra old fossils of small suidgy animals into a dramatic and gripping read THIS REVIEW HAS BEEN CURTAILED IN PROTEST AT GOODREADS CENSORSHIP POLICYSee the complete review here

Free download Í PDF, DOC, TXT, eBook or Kindle ePUB free æ Stephen Jay Gould

E remains of an ancient sea where dozens of strange creatures lived a forgotten corner of evolution preserved in awesome. The drama I have to tell is intense and intellectual It transcends these ephemeral themes of personality and the stock stage The victory at stake is bigger and far abstract than any material reward a new interpretation of life s history In these sentences Gould not only tells us the theme of his book but how much his work means to him His passion for paleontology and the story of life resonate from every page His tone perspective and considerable writing skills make Wonderful Life a wonderful readThe Burgess Shale in the mountains of British Columbia is notable for its rich assortment of 500 million year old fossils Many were formed by soft bodied creatures never before known Typical fossils are from shells bones or teeth but these were thin residues left on shale stone These compressed layers of animals may have resulted from a mudslide on a shallow ocean floor which became sedimentary rock The site was discovered in 1909 by Charles D Walcott Secretary of the Smithsonian Institution and a leading paleontologist of his time He brought back many specimens to Washington Walcott classified his new specimens into existing major categories primarily arthropods or annelid worms In the 1970 s Harry Whittington a Cambridge paleontologist and his graduate students Simon Conway Morris and Derek Briggs began reassessing Walcott s collection along with newer specimens Gould relies on their and Walcott s monographs drawings and findings to develop a new interpretation He holds that many of these animals were from extinct phyla and neither arthropods or annelid worms He goes into great detail about the features of many unusual specimens to make his case Gould s skill as a writer is aptly demonstrated by his ability to explore taxonomic differences and still hold the interest of the lay readerGould sees these animals as uniuely specialized not as primitively simple as Walcott s classifications imply Gould holds that the Burgess Shale discoveries are representative of the Cambrian Explosion which produced many distinctly different body plans few of which survived Thus most Burgess Fossils were not precursors of modern forms He calls the variety of distinct body plans comprising different phyla disparity and differentiation within phyla diversity Gould posits that over time we have increased diversity but reduced disparity or to put it another way abundant variation within a limited number of anatomical designsGould believes Walcott s erroneous classifications were driven by preconceptions The greatest impediment to scientific innovation is usually a conceptual lock not a factual lock Walcott s preconceptions included a strict view of Darwinian gradualism thus he invented circumstances to explain the lack of Precambrian fossils Gould conversely is famous for his theory of punctuated euilibrium the idea that evolutionary change occurs in brief periods of rapid change albeit on geologic timescales in between longer periods of slow change Walcott had a religious belief that meant evolution had to lead to man Inherent in this belief is that evolution always goes in the direction of progress Thus Gould thinks Walcott shoehorned his specimens into existing phyla and major groups to show the progression he expected Gould does cut Walcott some slack noting that he had numerous high level administrative duties and that while a prolific collector he never had the time to spend with his specimens to adeuately analyze them Detailed analysis would have to wait for Whittington and his students who studied them carefully Walcott did not dissect the fossils to get at underlying structures Whittington Morris and Briggs did Amazingly they were able to expose individual layers despite the extreme compression revealing features hidden from WalcottA central theme of the book is Gould s belief that evolution is based on contingency not progress Evolution occurs to accommodate immediate not future needs When some fish developed forearm like fins it was for use in water not to colonize land Dinosaurs did not first acuire feathers to fly That these features proved useful later for something unrelated Gould feels is a contingency Those Burgess Shale lifeforms that have modern day progeny were lucky Most did not Thus in terms of the number of uniue anatomies Gould sees decline not expansion So that today despite a proliferation of species there are fewer phyla Gould describes the phrase survival of the fittest as a tautology What does fittest mean except those that survive He sees no way to have predicted which Burgess forms would make it to the present and which would not Given the many mass and lesser extinctions the dramatic changes in ocean and atmospheric conditions what features would later became critically important was a crap shoot Thus Gould holds that the fauna we see today even our own existence was entirely contingent on unpredictable events He points out that mammals lived alongside dinosaurs for 100 million years before the Cretaceous Tertiary extinction They survived as small animals in their holes and hideouts as dinosaurs ruled Without that huge asteroid striking 65 million years ago why would things be different todayIt should be noted that Gould s interpretations are controversial Simon Morris changed his views and in a 1998 book held that most Burgess Fossils were related to current forms More recently gene seuencing has identified relationships between animals that the fossil record missed Still the phyla determination of many Burgess Fossils remains unresolved Some people see Gould s idea of punctuated euilibrium as inconsistent with phyletic gradualism the predominant theory Many paleontologists see no contradiction Evolutionary change may be or less rapid but even rapid change operates over geologic timescales of millions of years Lastly some may find Gould s theory of contingency upsetting It makes me appreciate just being here and having the opportunity to read wonderful books like Wonderful Life Service Book ... of the Antiochian Orthodox Christian Archdiocese of North America evolution preserved in awesome. The drama I have to tell is intense and intellectual It transcends these A Curse So Dark and Lonely (Cursebreakers, ephemeral themes of personality and the stock stage The victory at stake is bigger and far abstract than any material reward a new interpretation of life s history In these sentences Gould not only tells us the theme of his book but how much his work means to him His passion for paleontology and the story of life resonate from Look Again every page His tone perspective and considerable writing skills make Wonderful Life a wonderful readThe Burgess Shale in the mountains of British Columbia is notable for its rich assortment of 500 million year old fossils Many were formed by soft bodied creatures never before known Typical fossils are from shells bones or teeth but these were thin residues left on shale stone These compressed layers of animals may have resulted from a mudslide on a shallow ocean floor which became sedimentary rock The site was discovered in 1909 by Charles D Walcott Secretary of the Smithsonian Institution and a leading paleontologist of his time He brought back many specimens to Washington Walcott classified his new specimens into Alle vi børn i Bulderby. De første historier om alle vi børn i Bulderby existing major categories primarily arthropods or annelid worms In the 1970 s Harry Whittington a Cambridge paleontologist and his graduate students Simon Conway Morris and Derek Briggs began reassessing Walcott s collection along with newer specimens Gould relies on their and Walcott s monographs drawings and findings to develop a new interpretation He holds that many of these animals were from Il piacere nel Medioevo extinct phyla and neither arthropods or annelid worms He goes into great detail about the features of many unusual specimens to make his case Gould s skill as a writer is aptly demonstrated by his ability to Drunk on the Moon erroneous classifications were driven by preconceptions The greatest impediment to scientific innovation is usually a conceptual lock not a factual lock Walcott s preconceptions included a strict view of Darwinian gradualism thus he invented circumstances to Der ganze weg explain the lack of Precambrian fossils Gould conversely is famous for his theory of punctuated Rich Habits Poor Habits euilibrium the idea that El Metal evolutionary change occurs in brief periods of rapid change albeit on geologic timescales in between longer periods of slow change Walcott had a religious belief that meant The Ichneutae of Sophocles, with Notes and a Translation Into English, Preceded by Introductory Chapters Dealing with the Play, with Satyric Drama, an evolution had to lead to man Inherent in this belief is that Kana Pict-o-Graphix evolution always goes in the direction of progress Thus Gould thinks Walcott shoehorned his specimens into Sienkiewicz. Żywot pisarza existing phyla and major groups to show the progression he TFS Ingenuity (The Terran Fleet Command Saga expected Gould does cut Walcott some slack noting that he had numerous high level administrative duties and that while a prolific collector he never had the time to spend with his specimens to adeuately analyze them Detailed analysis would have to wait for Whittington and his students who studied them carefully Walcott did not dissect the fossils to get at underlying structures Whittington Morris and Briggs did Amazingly they were able to Wybor idiomów angielskich expose individual layers despite the How Could She? extreme compression revealing features hidden from WalcottA central theme of the book is Gould s belief that Words on Words evolution is based on contingency not progress Evolution occurs to accommodate immediate not future needs When some fish developed forearm like fins it was for use in water not to colonize land Dinosaurs did not first acuire feathers to fly That these features proved useful later for something unrelated Gould feels is a contingency Those Burgess Shale lifeforms that have modern day progeny were lucky Most did not Thus in terms of the number of uniue anatomies Gould sees decline not Finding Magic (Downside Ghosts, expansion So that today despite a proliferation of species there are fewer phyla Gould describes the phrase survival of the fittest as a tautology What does fittest mean Half My Blood (Dartmoor, except those that survive He sees no way to have predicted which Burgess forms would make it to the present and which would not Given the many mass and lesser Ja - Ty - My extinctions the dramatic changes in ocean and atmospheric conditions what features would later became critically important was a crap shoot Thus Gould holds that the fauna we see today The Poisoned Honey Cake (Roman Mystery Scrolls, existence was Katyně entirely contingent on unpredictable Evolving Brains, Emerging Gods events He points out that mammals lived alongside dinosaurs for 100 million years before the Cretaceous Tertiary How Much Wood Would a Woodchuck Chuck? extinction They survived as small animals in their holes and hideouts as dinosaurs ruled Without that huge asteroid striking 65 million years ago why would things be different todayIt should be noted that Gould s interpretations are controversial Simon Morris changed his views and in a 1998 book held that most Burgess Fossils were related to current forms More recently gene seuencing has identified relationships between animals that the fossil record missed Still the phyla determination of many Burgess Fossils remains unresolved Some people see Gould s idea of punctuated Craft euilibrium as inconsistent with phyletic gradualism the predominant theory Many paleontologists see no contradiction Evolutionary change may be or less rapid but Król życia even rapid change operates over geologic timescales of millions of years Lastly some may find Gould s theory of contingency upsetting It makes me appreciate just being here and having the opportunity to read wonderful books like Wonderful Life


10 thoughts on “Wonderful Life The Burgess Shale and the Nature of History

  1. says:

    A book about wonder and a wonderful book The story of the Burgess Shale—from its initial misinterpretation to its reassessment 50 years later—is mind blowing This limestone outcropping which sits at an altitude of 8000 feet in the Canadian Rockies near British Columbia was at euatorial sea level 530 million years ago Its shale has revealed about 150 previously unknown arthropod genera and entirely new species with anatomies that woul

  2. says:

    A decent but certainly out of date book The most interesting section is that regarding the anatomy of the Burgess biota and the historical narrative of Whittington Conway Morris and Briggs is also a highlight The technical details of chapter three might throw some readers off but I found them to be fascinatingUnfortunately most of t

  3. says:

    This book was unlike anything else I'd ever read I suspect because it owes something to the scientific monograph Maybe? Not having ever read a scientific monograph they don't even call them that these days I don't know Anyway Gould repeated

  4. says:

    “The drama I have to tell is intense and intellectual It transcends these ephemeral themes of personality and the stock stage The

  5. says:

    Wonderful bookSome of the science has been overtaken in the uarter century since it was written but mainly in the details not in the main thrust of the arguments And it is very much a long argument if mostly with someone other than me I could h

  6. says:

    The Burgess Shale is a fossil deposit of importance eual to that of the Rift Valley sites of East Africa in that it provide

  7. says:

    The Burgess Shale's creatures with their anatomies as striking as bizarre are a perfect illustration of the history of life on Earth just a matter of contingency We are but we could never have been owning our surv

  8. says:

    Wonderful Life is pretty well wonderful If your curiosity about the Burgess Shale or the weird and wonderful beings of the Cambrian period needs sating this book should than do it It is uite dense — Gould may have been a popular science writer but he didn’t dumb it down — but it’s worth the time investmentIt’s true that

  9. says:

    Stephen Jay Gould performs a really unlikely feat in this book; he makes arthropods as fascinating as dinosaurs In fact he makes a subject that could be extra ordinarily dull the process of taxonomic classificatio

  10. says:

    I'm not saying anything startling or new when I say this book is awesomeSo for one thing it's a book about writing and about mythology and how w

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