Synopses & Reviews
Charles Darwin's On the Origin of Species By Means of Natural Selection is both a key scientific work of research, still read by scientists, and a readable narrative that has had a cultural impact unmatched by any other scientific text. First published in 1859, it has continued to sell, to be reviewed and discussed, attacked and defended. The Origin is one of those books whose controversial reputation ensures that many who have never read it nevertheless have an opinion about it. Jim Endersby's major new scholarly edition debunks some of the myths that surround Darwin's book, while providing a detailed examination of the contexts within which it was originally written, published and read. Endersby provides a new, up-to-date and very readable introduction to this classic text and a level of scholarly apparatus (explanatory notes, bibliography and appendixes) that is unmatched by any other edition.
Charles Darwin's seminal formulation of the theory of Evolution, On the Origin of Species continues to be as controversial today as when it was first published.
Written for a general readership, On the Origin of Species sold out on the day of its publication and has remained in print ever since. Instantly and persistently controversial, the concept of natural selection transformed scientific analysis about all life on Earth. Beforethe Origin of Species, accepted thinking held that life was the static and perfect creation of God. By a single, systematic argument Darwin called this view into question. His ideas have affected public perception of everything from religion to economics. William Bynum's introduction discusses Darwin's life, the publication and reception of the themes of On the Origin of Species, and the subsequent development of its major themes. The new edition also includes brief biographies of some of the most important scientific thinkers leading up to and surrounding the Origin of Species, suggested further reading, notes and a chronology.
For more than seventy years, Penguin has been the leading publisher of classic literature in the English-speaking world. With more than 1,700titles, Penguin Classics represents a global bookshelf of the best works throughout history and across genres and disciplines. Readers trust theseries to provide authoritative texts enhanced by introductions and notes by distinguished scholars and contemporary authors, as well as up-to-datetranslations by award-winning translators."
A special anniversary edition with a cover by controversial artist Damien Hirst
This landmark work of scientific and philosophical thought sets forth Charles Darwin?s pioneering theory of evolution and the interdependence of species. On the Origin of Species had an immediate and profound impact on the literature and ideas of his contemporaries. Without setting out to be controversial, Darwin became quite possibly the most revolutionary writer of the Victorian age, overturning the widely held religious and scientific beliefs of his time.
About the Author
(1809-1882), a Victorian scientist and naturalist, is regarded as one of the most famous figures of science in history.
William Bynum is professor emeritus of the history of medicine at University College, London.
Damien Hirst is an acclaimed artist, known in particular for his series of works on death.