Am I A Monkey?

Am I A Monkey?

Six Big Questions About Evolution

Book - 2010
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Despite the title, this is a serious primer on the theory of evolution. Evolutionary biologist/philosopher of science Ayala (U. of California, Irvine) presents an accessible introduction to Darwin's theory as the organizing principle of modern biology, what scientists mean by "theory," supporting evidence, and mechanisms of evolution. He maintains that evolution and religious beliefs need not be in conflict because they are different domains of knowledge. A bibliographic essay suggests further reading. Annotation ©2010 Book News, Inc., Portland, OR (

Blackwell Publishing

Despite the ongoing cultural controversy in America, evolution remains a cornerstone of science. In this book, Francisco J. Ayala—an evolutionary biologist, member of the National Academy of Sciences, and winner of the National Medal of Science and the Templeton Prize—cuts to the chase in a daring attempt to address, in nontechnical language, six perennial questions about evolution:

• Am I a Monkey?
• Why Is Evolution a Theory?
• What Is DNA?
• Do All Scientists Accept Evolution?
• How Did Life Begin?
• Can One Believe in Evolution and God?

This to-the-point book answers each of these questions with force. Ayala's occasionally biting essays refuse to lend credence to disingenuous ideas and arguments. He lays out the basic science that underlies evolutionary theory, explains how the process works, and soundly makes the case for why evolution is not a threat to religion.

Brief, incisive, topical, authoritative, Am I a Monkey? will take you a day to read and a lifetime to ponder.

Publisher: Baltimore : Johns Hopkins University Press, 2010
Description: xiii, 83 p. : ill., map ; 21 cm
ISBN: 9780801897542
Branch Call Number: 576.8 Aya


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Dec 23, 2016

Excellent short introduction. Objective, brief, and to the point while treating the subject matter sensitively. Highly recommended for anyone wanting a first introduction to evolutionary theory.

Apr 12, 2011

This book is the best place to start to get a handle on evolutionary theory. It is a collection of six short essays that end up being an excellent introduction to anyone wondering what all the fuss is about. Spoiler alert: You're not a monkey.

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