Earth, Life, and Time Required and Supplemental Reading
Semester I (CPSP 118G Fall 2007)
Online Required Reading:
- Bjornerud, Marcia. 2005. Reading the Rocks: The Autobiography of the Earth. Westview.
- Sagan, Carl. 1995. The Demon-Haunted World: Science as a Candle in the Dark.
- Bilham, Roger. 2005. A flying start, then a slow slip.
- Bloom, Paul, and Deena Skolnick Weisbert. 2007. Why do some people resist science?. Edge: The Third Culture 210, May 17, 2007.
- Dissanayake, Chandrasekara. 2005. Of stones and health: medical geology in Sri Lanka. Science 309:
- McLaren, Karla. 2004. Bridging the Chasm Between Two Cultures. Skeptical Inquirer
- Lyell, Charles. 1830. Princples of Geology, Volume I,
Semester II (CPSP 118G Spring 2007)
- Zimmer, Carl. 2006. Evolution: The Triumph of an Idea. Harper Perennial. ISBN-10: 0-06-113840-1; ISBN-13: 978-0-06-113840-9
- Diamond, Jared. 1992. The Third Chimpanzee: The Evolution and Future of the Human
Animal. Harper Perennial. ISBN-10: 0-06-084550-3; ISBN-13: 978-0-06-084550-6
- Balter, Michael. 2005. Are
humans still evolving?. Science 309:234-238.
- Barnosky, Anthony D., Paul L. Koch, Robert S. Feranec, Scott L. Wing, and Alan B. Shabel. 2004.
Assessing the causes of
Late Pleistocene extinctions on the continents. Science 306:70-75.
- Burney, David A., and Timothy F. Flannery. 2005.
Fifty millennia of catastrophic extinctions after human contact. Trends in Ecology and Evolution 20:395-401
- Darwin, Charles. 1883. The Variation of Animals and Plants Under Domestication,
Second Edition, Volume I,
- Forster, Peter. 2004. Ice Ages
and the mitochondrial DNA chronology of human dispersals: a review. Philosophical
Transactions of the Royal Society of London B 359:255–264.
- Forster, Peter, and Shuichi Matsumura. 2005.
EVOLUTION: Enhanced: Did Early Humans Go North or South? Science 308:965-966.
- Holtz, Thomas R., Jr. 2002.
Chasing Tyrannosaurus and Deinonychus around the Tree of Life: classifying
dinosaurs. Pp. 31-38, in J.G. Scotchmoor, D.A. Springer, B.H. Breithaupt & A.F.
Fiorillo (eds.), Dinosaurs: The Science Behind the Stories, Society of Vertebrate
Paleontology, Paleontological Society & American Geological Institute.
- Mellars, Paul. 2006.
A new radiocarbon revolution and the dispersal of modern humans in Eurasia. Nature 439:931-935.
- Nesse, Randolph M., Stephen C. Stearns, and Gilbert S. Omenn. 2006.
Medicine needs evolution. Science 311:171-172.
- Orr, H. Allen. 2005. Annals of Science: Devolution. The New Yorker
May 30, 2005. [A detailed but non-technical review of the scientific problems with "Intelligent Design".]
- Zimov, Sergey A. 2005. Pleistocene
Park: return of the mammoth's ecosystem. Science 308:796-798.
Semester III (CPSP 218G Fall 2007)
- Diamond, Jared. 1999. Guns, Germs, and Steel: The Fate of Human Societies. Norton.
- Park, Robert. 2000. Voodoo Science: The Road from Foolishness to Fraud. Oxford
- Baker, Mitzi. 2006.
Darwin in medical school. Stanford Medical Magazine Summer 2006.
- Diamond, Jared. 2002.
Evolution, consequences and future of plant and animal domestication. Nature
- Diamond, Jared, and Peter Bellwood. 2003.
Farmers and their languages: the first expansions. Science 300:597-603.
- Gray, Russell D., and Quentin D. Atkinson. 2003.
Language-tree divergence times support the Anatolian theory of Indo-European origin.
- Gross, Liza. 2006.
Scientific illiteracy and the partisan takeover of biology. PLoS Biology 4(5):e167.
- Karieva, Peter, Sean Watts, Robert McDonald, and Tim Boucher. 2007.
Domesticated Nature: shaping landscapes and ecosystems for human welfare Science 316:1866-1869.
- Mooney, Chris, and Matthew C. Nesbit. 2005. Undoing Darwin. Columbia Journalism Review
July/August 2005. [Two science writers discuss the Press's misleading coverage of evolution, falsely portraying a
"contraversy" in Science that doesn't actually exist.]
- Pagel, Mark, and Ruth Mace. 2004.
The cultural wealth of nations. Nature 428:275-278.
- The Science Behind the Destruction of New Orleans: for extra credit purposes, you should treat the following readings
as a single unit:
- Mooney, Chris. 2005. Thinking big about hurricanes.
American Prospect, Online Version Web Exclusive May 2005. [By science writer Chris Mooney, published exactly 100 days
before Katrina made landfall.]
- Bourne, Joel K., Jr. 2004. Gone with the water.
National Geographic October 2004. [11 months prior to Katrina's landfall.]
- Fischetti, Mark. 2001. Drowning New Orleans.
Scientific American October 2001. [Four years prior to Katrina's landfall.]
- Baker, D. James. 2000. NOAA REPORTS RECORD WARMTH FOR JANUARY - MARCH 2000. Earth Day Remarks on Global Climate Change
by NOAA Administrator Dr. D. James Baker, U.S. Coast Guard Station, Lake Pontchartrain, New Orleans. [Five years prior to Katrina's landfall.]
Recommended Readings for All ELT Students:
- Gonick, Larry. The Cartoon History of the Universe. Three bound
volumes so far. Holtz & Merck HIGHLY recommended this series to all students of all majors, since it
gives a very entertaining but very informative view of world history. The invidual bound
volumes published so far are:
- Gonick, Larry. 1997 (reprint edition). The Cartoon History of the Universe I: Volumes 1-7 From The
Big Bang to Alexander the Great. Main Street Books. [The paleontology and paleoanthropology chapters,
being written a couple of decades ago, are rather out of date. Still fun, though!]
- Gonick, Larry. 1994. The Cartoon History of the Universe II: Volumes 8-13 From the Springtime
of China to the Fall of Rome. Main Street Books. [Includes good overviews of the early
history of India and China. Funny how many "World History" courses at high schools and universities
frequenly overlook the history of half of humanity...]
- Gonick, Larry. 2002. The Cartoon History of the Universe III: From the Rise of Arabia
to the Renaissance. W.W. Norton & Company.
- Hosler, Jay. 2003. The Sandwalk Adventures: An Adventure in Evolution Told in Five
Chapters. Active Synapse. [Also recommended for all students of all majors. Buy it, read it,
pass it on to your friends and family! Probably THE most approachable all-ages description of how
evolution by natural selection works, told in comicbook form as a discussion between Charles Darwin and one
of his eyebrow mites. The appendix has a lot of useful information, too!]
- Quinn, Daniel. 1992. Ishmael: An Adventure of the Mind and Spirit. Bantam. [Recommended for all,
but most especially those who have already read The Third Chimpanzee and Guns, Germs, and Steel.
Revisits many of the same issues of those books, but from a different point-of-view and in a very different
genre (in the mode of a Socratic dialogue/New Age vision quest!).]
Required Readings from Past Colloquia:
- Flannery, Tim. 2001. The Eternal Frontier: An Ecological History of North America and Its
People. Atlantic Monthly Press.
- Fortey, Richard. 1997. Life: A Natural History of the First Four Billion Years of
Life on Earth. Vintage Press.
- McPhee, John. 1990. Basin and Range. Noonday Press.
- McPhee, John. 2000. Annals of the Former World. Farrar Straus & Giroux. [Large volume,
combining several of McPhee's earlier books (Basin and Range, In Suspect Terrain,
Rising from the Plains, and Assembling California), and the new Crossing the Craton.
Highly recommended to anyone who wants to go on in the Earth sciences.]
- Powell, James Lawrence. 2001. Mysteries of Terra Firma: The Age and Evolution of
the Earth. Free Press.
Last modified: 29 June 2007