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The Species That Changed Itself

How Prosperity Reshaped Humanity

Edwin Gale



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Allen Lane
16 February 2021
An inquisitive, expansive and fascinating exploration of how humans have, in changing the world, changed ourselves Other species adapt to their environments; we alone create ours. Over generations, we have remade the world to suit ourselves - using improved knowledge and technology to confront the traditional scourges - and for the most part we enjoy prosperity beyond the dreams of our ancestors. What's more, in changing our world, we have also reshaped the human phenotype - the interaction between genes and environment that moulds our bodies and minds.

The results can be seen in the streets of our post-industrial cities. We are taller and heavier, and live longer. We think and behave differently, and die from once-rare diseases. Our experiences of life have been transformed, and in turn so have our societies.

Weaving together biology, social anthropology, epidemiology and history, Edwin Gale examines the shifting physical and mental dimensions of our lives, from ageing to illness, food production to reproduction, designer bodies to IQ tests, and asks- are we a self-domesticated species?
By:   Edwin Gale
Imprint:   Allen Lane
Country of Publication:   United Kingdom
Dimensions:   Height: 240mm,  Width: 162mm,  Spine: 35mm
Weight:   611g
ISBN:   9780241292693
ISBN 10:   0241292697
Pages:   400
Publication Date:   16 February 2021
Audience:   College/higher education ,  Professional and scholarly ,  General/trade ,  Primary ,  Undergraduate
Format:   Hardback
Publisher's Status:   Active

Edwin Gale studied English Literature at Cambridge before pursuing a medical career. After training in Cambridge, Nottingham, Copenhagen and Oxford he was appointed to Bart's Hospital in London, and was made Professor in 1992. An expert in diabetes research, he edited Diabetologia, the European journal of diabetes, from 2004-2011, and wrote many broad-based commentaries and reviews over that period. He retired in 2011.

Reviews for The Species That Changed Itself: How Prosperity Reshaped Humanity

A fascinating thesis argues that biologically we are unlike any generation that has gone before... [Gale's] book is humane and fascinating and it boasts a compelling argument. You will not be bored reading it and if you can't be bothered to read it cover to cover you can simply open it at random to find a good story for your next dinner party. -- James Marriot * Times *

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