Appetite For Wonder

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Unweaving the Rainbow

Unweaving the Rainbow
  • Author : Richard Dawkins,Charles Simonyi Professor of the Public Understanding of Science Richard Dawkins
  • Publisher : Houghton Mifflin Harcourt
  • Release : 1998
  • ISBN : 9780395883822
  • Language : En, Es, Fr & De

Book Description :

Offers an assessment of what science is, how it feeds the human appetite for wonder, and how "unweaving" the mysteries of science can be even more beautiful than the mystery itself

An Appetite for Wonder

An Appetite for Wonder
  • Author : Richard Dawkins
  • Publisher : Harper Collins
  • Release : 2013-09-24
  • ISBN : 0062225812
  • Language : En, Es, Fr & De

Book Description :

With the 2006 publication of The God Delusion, the name Richard Dawkins became a byword for ruthless skepticism and "brilliant, impassioned, articulate, impolite" debate (San Francisco Chronicle). his first memoir offers a more personal view. His first book, The Selfish Gene, caused a seismic shift in the study of biology by proffering the gene-centered view of evolution. It was also in this book that Dawkins coined the term meme, a unit of cultural evolution, which has itself become a mainstay in contemporary culture. In An Appetite for Wonder, Richard Dawkins shares a rare view into his early life, his intellectual awakening at Oxford, and his path to writing The Selfish Gene. He paints a vivid picture of his idyllic childhood in colonial Africa, peppered with sketches of his colorful ancestors, charming parents, and the peculiarities of colonial life right after World War II. At boarding school, despite a near-religious encounter with an Elvis record, he began his career as a skeptic by refusing to kneel for prayer in chapel. Despite some inspired teaching throughout primary and secondary school, it was only when he got to Oxford that his intellectual curiosity took full flight. Arriving at Oxford in 1959, when undergraduates "left Elvis behind" for Bach or the Modern Jazz Quartet, Dawkins began to study zoology and was introduced to some of the university's legendary mentors as well as its tutorial system. It's to this unique educational system that Dawkins credits his awakening, as it invited young people to become scholars by encouraging them to pose rigorous questions and scour the library for the latest research rather than textbook "teaching to" any kind of test. His career as a fellow and lecturer at Oxford took an unexpected turn when, in 1973, a serious strike in Britain caused prolonged electricity cuts, and he was forced to pause his computer-based research. Provoked by the then widespread misunderstanding of natural selection known as "group selection" and inspired by the work of William Hamilton, Robert Trivers, and John Maynard Smith, he began to write a book he called, jokingly, "my bestseller." It was, of course, The Selfish Gene. Here, for the first time, is an intimate memoir of the childhood and intellectual development of the evolutionary biologist and world-famous atheist, and the story of how he came to write what is widely held to be one of the most important books of the twentieth century.

Eighteenth-Century Fiction and the Reinvention of Wonder

Eighteenth-Century Fiction and the Reinvention of Wonder
  • Author : Sarah Tindal Kareem
  • Publisher : OUP Oxford
  • Release : 2014-10-23
  • ISBN : 0191003123
  • Language : En, Es, Fr & De

Book Description :

A footprint materializes mysteriously on a deserted shore; a giant helmet falls from the sky; a traveler awakens to find his horse dangling from a church steeple. Eighteenth-century fiction brims with moments such as these, in which the prosaic rubs up against the marvelous. While it is a truism that the period's literature is distinguished by its realism and air of probability, Eighteenth-Century Fiction and the Reinvention of Wonder argues that wonder is integral to—rather than antithetical to—the developing techniques of novelistic fiction. Positioning its reader on the cusp between recognition and estrangement, between faith and doubt, modern fiction hinges upon wonder. Eighteenth-Century Fiction and the Reinvention of Wonder unfolds its new account of fiction's rise through surprising readings of classic early novels—from Daniel Defoe's Robinson Crusoe to Jane Austen's Northanger Abbey—and brings to attention lesser-known works, most notably Rudolf Raspe's Baron Munchausen's Narrative of His Marvellous Travels. In this bold new account, the eighteenth century bears witness not to the world's disenchantment but rather to wonder's relocation from the supernatural realm to the empirical world, providing a reevaluation not only of how we look back at the Enlightenment, but also of how we read today.

Intellectual Appetite

Intellectual Appetite
  • Author : Paul J. Griffiths
  • Publisher : CUA Press
  • Release : 2009-08-01
  • ISBN : 0813216869
  • Language : En, Es, Fr & De

Book Description :

The appetite for knowledge--wanting to know things--is very strong in humans. Some will sacrifice all other goods (sex, power, food, life itself) for it. But this is not a simple appetite, and this book treats some of its complications, deformations, beauties, and intensities.

Strange Wonder

Strange Wonder
  • Author : Mary-Jane Rubenstein
  • Publisher : Columbia University Press
  • Release : 2009-03-05
  • ISBN : 0231518595
  • Language : En, Es, Fr & De

Book Description :

Strange Wonder confronts Western philosophy's ambivalent relationship to the Platonic "wonder" that reveals the strangeness of the everyday. On the one hand, this wonder is said to be the origin of all philosophy. On the other hand, it is associated with a kind of ignorance that ought to be extinguished as swiftly as possible. By endeavoring to resolve wonder's indeterminacy into certainty and calculability, philosophy paradoxically secures itself at the expense of its own condition of possibility. Strange Wonder locates a reopening of wonder's primordial uncertainty in the work of Martin Heidegger, for whom wonder is first experienced as the shock at the groundlessness of things and then as an astonishment that things nevertheless are. Mary-Jane Rubenstein traces this double movement through the thought of Emmanuel Levinas, Jean-Luc Nancy, and Jacques Derrida, ultimately thematizing wonder as the awesome, awful opening that exposes thinking to devastation as well as transformation. Rubenstein's study shows that wonder reveals the extraordinary in and through the ordinary, and is therefore crucial to the task of reimagining political, religious, and ethical terrain.

Dawkins' God

Dawkins' God
  • Author : Alister E. McGrath
  • Publisher : John Wiley & Sons
  • Release : 2014-11-11
  • ISBN : 1118964799
  • Language : En, Es, Fr & De

Book Description :

A fully updated new edition of a critically acclaimed examinationof the theories and writings of Richard Dawkins by a world-renownedexpert on the relation of science and religion Includes in-depth analysis of Dawkins’ landmark treatiseThe God Delusion (2006), as well as coverage of his laterpopular works The Magic of Reality (2011) and TheGreatest Show on Earth (2011),and a new chapter on Dawkins as apopularizer of science Tackles Dawkins’ hostile and controversial views onreligion, and examine the religious implications of his scientificideas including a comprehensive investigation of the ‘selfishgene’ Written in an accessible and engaging style that will appeal toanyone interested in better understanding the interplay betweenscience and religion

Darwin the Writer

Darwin the Writer
  • Author : George Levine
  • Publisher : OUP Oxford
  • Release : 2011-06-30
  • ISBN : 0191620629
  • Language : En, Es, Fr & De

Book Description :

Charles Darwin's On the Origin of Species, arguably the most important book written in English in the nineteenth century, transformed the way we looked at the world. It is usually assumed that this is because the idea of evolution was so staggeringly powerful. Prize-winning author George Levine suggests that much of its influence was due, in fact, to its artistry; to the way it was written. Alive with metaphor, vivid descriptions, twists, hesitations, personal exclamations, and humour, the prose is imbued with the sorts of tensions, ambivalences, and feelings characteristic of great literature. Although it is certainly a work of "science," the Origin is equally a work of "literature," at home in the company of celebrated Victorian novels such as Middlemarch and Bleak House, books that give us a unique yet recognisable sense of what the world is really like, while not being literally 'true'. Darwin's enormous cultural success, Levine contends, depended as much on the construction of his argument and the nature of his language, as it did on the power of his ideas and his evidence. By challenging the dominant reading of his work, this impassioned and energetic book gives us a Darwin who is comic rather than tragic, ebullient rather than austere, and who takes delight in the wild and fluid entanglement of things.

The Next Enlightenment

The Next Enlightenment
  • Author : Walter Truett Anderson
  • Publisher : St. Martin's Press
  • Release : 2015-03-10
  • ISBN : 1466891866
  • Language : En, Es, Fr & De

Book Description :

In The Next Enlightenment, Walter Truett Anderson treats Eastern spiritual traditions and Western philosophy, psychology and science as steps along the same evolutionary path rather than as completely separate and incompatible schools of thought. In the opening chapters, he looks at five different "Liberation Movements" that emerged in the modern world: the eighteenth century European Enlightenment; the nineteenth century upheaval resulting from the publication of Darwin's Origin of Species; and in the twentieth century, existentialism, psychoanalysis, and the human potential movement of the 1960s and 1970s. He then argues that this century's next surge of thought and action will regard the exploration of the physical universe and the study of human consciousness as two sides of the same coin, and equally important, come to understand personal enlightenment as a natural process of growth rather than a supernatural gift bestowed upon a chosen few. Elegantly argued and written with a sense of humor, The Next Enlightenment offers a refreshing vision of how the ancient quest for enlightenment is taking on new life in a rapidly-changing, globalizing world.