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Posts tagged with "Book"

  • Mr. Humble and Dr. Butcher: A Monkey's Head, the Pope's Neuroscientist, and the Quest to Transplant the Soul
    Brandy Shillace

    Book

    A neurosurgeon’s audacious experiments raised ire from animal rights activists and interest from the Vatican

    Historian Brandy Schillace’s new book, Mr. Humble and Dr. Butcher—so titled to evoke Robert Louis Stevenson’s Jekyll and Hyde—offers a probing and provocative portrait of the American neurosurgeon and neurophysiologist Robert J. White (1926–2010), whose life’s ambition was to establish that the brain—the seat of consciousness, personhood, or, as a pious Catholic like White conceived… Read More
  • Vera Rubin: A Life
    Jacqueline Mitton and Simon Mitton

    Book

    A new biography paints a vivid picture of the life of dark matter pioneer Vera Rubin

    Vera Rubin would not have called herself the discoverer of dark matter. In fact, she once tried to prevent a press release from even including the word “discovery,” instead suggesting that the National Science Foundation’s press team write that her observations “provided convincing evidence.” It is, after all, rare that any topic has only a… Read More
  • CRISPR People: The Science and Ethics of Editing Humans
    Henry T. Greely

    Book

    A bioethicist breaks down the first human germline genome editing experiment

    On 25 November 2018, He Jiankui, a biophysicist at Southern University of Science and Technology in Shenzhen, China, announced that his laboratory had pulled off a previously unthinkable achievement: the successful modification of the germline genome of two living humans. Two children, female fraternal twins known by the pseudonyms Lulu and Nana, had been born… Read More
  • How to Avoid a Climate Disaster: The Solutions We Have and the Breakthroughs We Need
    Bill Gates

    Book

    Microsoft mogul Bill Gates offers a pragmatic approach to achieving greenhouse gas targets

    Bill Gates is not a climate scientist. In his new book, How to Avoid a Climate Disaster, he explains that he came to climate science indirectly, via issues of energy poverty that arose as part of his health and development work with the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation. “I am aware that I’m an imperfect… Read More
  • When Brains Dream: Exploring the Science and Mystery of Sleep
    Antonio Zadra and Robert Strickgold

    Book

    Dreams could be critical to consolidating memories, argue two sleep researchers

    In When Brains Dream, sleep scientists Antonio Zadra and Robert Stickgold detail the latest research that seeks to understand what occurs in our brains when we dream, and they present theories about what purposes dreaming may serve. The book takes the reader from humanity’s early religious understanding of dreams, through our initial attempts to study… Read More
  • Narrative in the Age of the Genome: Genetic Worlds
    Lara Choksey

    Book

    A scholar probes subtle shifts in stories told through genes

    “If the double helix is an icon of the modern age, then the genome is one of the last grand narratives of modernity,” writes Lara Choksey in her new book, Narrative in the Age of the Genome. Hybridizing literary criticism with a genre-spanning consideration of a dozen distinct literary works, and imbued throughout with deep… Read More
  • Extraterrestrial: The First Sign of Intelligent Life Beyond Earth
    Avi Loeb

    Book

    A high-profile astronomer argues that the strange interstellar object ‘Oumuamua may be an alien signal

    In the introduction of his sixth book, Extraterrestrial: The First Sign of Intelligent Life Beyond Earth, Avi Loeb, chair of the Harvard Department of Astronomy, acknowledges the elephant in the room: “In the spirit of transparency, know that some scientists find my hypothesis unfashionable, outside of mainstream science, even dangerously ill conceived. But the most… Read More
  • Four Lost Cities: A Secret History of the Urban Age
    Annalee Newitz

    Book

    Ancient human settlements are brought vividly to life in an engaging new analysis

    In Four Lost Cities, Annalee Newitz—a technology journalist and author of popular genre fiction—has unexpectedly turned their attention to the archaeology of the urban past. Each of the four sections of this volume describes a different case study. Çatalhöyük, the first case Newitz describes, is a fascinating example of a very early experiment in settled… Read More
  • This is the Voice
    John Colapinto

    Book

    A deep dive into voice research covers lyrical lilts, gargled rasps, and everything in between

    The larynx is critical for two broad functions: one life-sustaining, aiding in respiration and preventing the aspiration of food into the lungs; and the other life-enhancing, contributing to phonation, an essential component of communication. There was a time when the latter was largely ignored by researchers. However, in recent years, there has been an explosion… Read More
  • The Doctors Blackwell: How Two Pioneering Sisters Brought Medicine to Women—and Women to Medicine
    Janice P. Nimura

    Book

    Certain of her own exceptional nature, physician Elizabeth Blackwell dismissed those who aided her

    In 1849 Elizabeth Blackwell became the first woman to receive a medical degree from an American college. She was a resourceful, dedicated, and imaginative thinker. She was also a greedy, racist, and rivalrous snob. In The Doctors Blackwell, Janice Nimura shifts between Blackwell’s own account of her singular greatness and the story of her relationship… Read More