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Life Cycles:
Reflections of an Evolutionary Biologist
John Tyler Bonner

Paperback | 2015 | $39.95 | £32.95 | ISBN: 9780691602738
Hardcover | 2016 | $99.95 | £83.95 | ISBN: 9780691632193
222 pp. | 5 x 8 | 24 line illus.
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Within a single captivating narrative, John Bonner combines an intensely personal memoir of scientific progress and an overview of what we now know about living things. Bonner, a major participant in the development of biology as an experimental science, draws on his life-long study of slime molds for an understanding of the life cycle-the foundation of all biology. In an age of increasing specialization and fragmentation among subfields of biology, this is a unique work of reflection and integration.

Originally published in 1993.

The Princeton Legacy Library uses the latest print-on-demand technology to again make available previously out-of-print books from the distinguished backlist of Princeton University Press. These editions preserve the original texts of these important books while presenting them in durable paperback and hardcover editions. The goal of the Princeton Legacy Library is to vastly increase access to the rich scholarly heritage found in the thousands of books published by Princeton University Press since its founding in 1905.


"If we measure books by the degree to which they alter our perceptions, then this one is certainly a winner. We will never be able to look at a rotting log in quite the same way again or dig through the soil in the garden."--Steven Austad, Natural History

"Charming, fascinating, and insightful, this slim volume combines a memoir of a life in science with an accessible distillation of what we know about the workings of living things."--Kirkus Reviews

"Bonner's prose is a felicitous blend of science simply explained, gentle but insistent rigor, and a fetching triad of wry humor, personal anecdote and unexpected diversion. This makes for an enchanting book that reflects a thoughtful preoccupation with life cycles and their evolution...rang[ing]...widely from the inherent importance of the size of particular organisms to the nature of animal thought and human culture."--Bernard Dixon, New Scientist

"This, then, is not only a book that grapples with some of the most profound issues in biology but also a professional autobiography; a life history that has intertwined with the life cycles under study....Bonner's book ought to be a classic."--Peter Calow, The Times Higher Education Supplement

Table of Contents:

The Background1
Ch. 1Beginnings3
Ch. 2The Life Cycle15
The Period of Size Increase37
Ch. 3Becoming Larger by Becoming Multicellular39
Ch. 4Becoming Larger by Developing68
Ch. 5Becoming Larger during Evolution93
The Adult Period121
Ch. 6Becoming Aware123
Ch. 7Becoming Social158
Ch. 8Becoming Cultural179
Selected Reading201

Other Princeton books authored or coauthored by John Tyler Bonner:


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Hardcover published in 1993

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  • For hardcover/paperback orders in Europe, Africa, the Middle East, India, and Pakistan

 Hardcover  £83.95 ISBN: 9780691632193

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File created: 4/20/2017

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