What is Life?
In their latest work, acclaimed authors Lynn Margulis and Dorion Sagan plunge into the very heart of living matter. Transcending both mechanistic and vitalistic concepts of life, this captivating book argues that the question "What is life?" is a linguistic trap. To answer according to the rules of grammar, we must supply a noun, the name of a thing. But life on Earth is more like a verb. It is a material process, surfing over matter like a strange, slow wave. It is a controlled artistic chaos, a set of chemical reactions so staggeringly complex that more than four billion years ago it began a sojourn that now, in human form, composes love letters and uses silicon-chip computers to calculate the temperature of matter at the birth of the universe. Life is existence's celebration. Complementing this absorbing account of the nature of life are eighty remarkable illustrations that range from the smallest known organism (Mycoplasma bacteria) to the largest (the biosphere itself). Creatures both strange and familiar enhance the pages of What Is Life?, inviting readers to reconsider preconceptions not only about life itself but about their own personal part in it.
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WHAT IS LIFE?User Review - Kirkus
The authors of Mystery Dance: The Evolution of Human Sexuality (1991) return to the fundamental biological questions, this time taking on the slipperiest of all issues. Wisely, they avoid any ... Read full review
LibraryThing ReviewUser Review - yapete - LibraryThing
Margulis is a first rate biologist, but this book falls far short of my expectations. It seems like she received an invitation to write book and put this one hastily together. It jumps from one thing ... Read full review