Book Search:  

 

 
Google full text of our books:

bookjacket

On Gaia:
A Critical Investigation of the Relationship between Life and Earth
Toby Tyrrell

Hardcover | 2013 | $35.00 / £24.95 | ISBN: 9780691121581
320 pp. | 6 x 9 | 16 halftones. 31 line illus. 12 tables. | SHOPPING CART

eBook | ISBN: 9781400847914 |
Our eBook editions are available from these online vendors

Reviews | Table of Contents
Chapter 1[PDF] pdf-icon
A Q&A with author Toby Tyrrell

Google full text of this book:
 

One of the enduring questions about our planet is how it has remained continuously habitable over vast stretches of geological time despite the fact that its atmosphere and climate are potentially unstable. James Lovelock's Gaia hypothesis posits that life itself has intervened in the regulation of the planetary environment in order to keep it stable and favorable for life. First proposed in the 1970s, Lovelock's hypothesis remains highly controversial and continues to provoke fierce debate. On Gaia undertakes the first in-depth investigation of the arguments put forward by Lovelock and others--and concludes that the evidence doesn't stack up in support of Gaia.

Toby Tyrrell draws on the latest findings in fields as diverse as climate science, oceanography, atmospheric science, geology, ecology, and evolutionary biology. He takes readers to obscure corners of the natural world, from southern Africa where ancient rocks reveal that icebergs were once present near the equator, to mimics of cleaner fish on Indonesian reefs, to blind fish deep in Mexican caves. Tyrrell weaves these and many other intriguing observations into a comprehensive analysis of the major assertions and lines of argument underpinning Gaia, and finds that it is not a credible picture of how life and Earth interact.

On Gaia reflects on the scientific evidence indicating that life and environment mutually affect each other, and proposes that feedbacks on Earth do not provide robust protection against the environment becoming uninhabitable--or against poor stewardship by us.

Toby Tyrrell is professor of Earth system science at the National Oceanography Centre Southampton (University of Southampton).

Review:

"Tyrrell's story is very informative and the reader will learn many fascinating stories of an organism's adaptation to an environment (rather than an environment conforming to an organism's need)."--Jonathan DuHamel, Arizona Daily Independent

"A systematic, dispassionate, retrospective examination of Gaia. . . . Tyrrell makes it very clear where he stands on Gaia, but the path of his journey is well reasoned--not a diatribe."--William Schlesinger, Nature Climate Change

"It is timely to present a systematic review of how Gaia theory looks in the light of . . . new information. Not too well is Toby Tyrrell's conclusion in this clear summary of the evidence to date. . . . Persuasive."--Jon Turney, Times Higher Education

"In On Gaia: A Critical Investigation of the Relationship between Life and Earth, Dr. Toby Tyrrell, for the first time, conducts a lengthy analysis of the scientific data for and against the Gaia Hypothesis. He concludes that the Gaia Hypothesis does not have enough scientific data to support it. He write eloquently, clearly, and succinctly describing how the Gaia Hypothesis lacks sufficient scientific evidence. . . . A fair and reflective analysis."--Gabriel Thoumi, MongaBay.com

"Tyrrell examines alternative arguments about the long-term characteristics of the Earth, considering geological and coevolutionary effects. He provides a detailed examination of how and why the environment cannot be affected by natural selection and how diverse physical factors affect living things. . . . Overall, a useful examination of the changing nature of Earth and the biologic/physical factors that affect the planet's organisms."--Choice

More reviews

Table of Contents:

Preface ix
1. Gaia, the Grand Idea 1
2. Good Citizens or Selfish Genes? 14
3. Life at the Edge: Lessons from Extremophiles 47
4. Temperature Paces Life 67
5. Icehouse Earth 88
6. Given Enough Time . . . 113
7. Evolutionary Innovations and Environmental Change 130
8. A Stable or an Unstable World? 145
9. The Puzzle of Life's Long Persistence 171
10. Conclusions 199
Notes 219
Further Reading 273
References 277
Acknowledgments 299
Index 301

Subject Area:

Shopping Cart:

  • For ebooks:

Our eBook editions are available
from these online vendors:

  • Amazon Kindle Store
  • Apple iBooks
  • Barnes & Noble Nook Store
  • Google Play eBook Store
  • Kno eBook Store
  • Kobo eBook Store
  • Many of our ebooks are available through
    library electronic resources including these platforms:

  • Books at JSTOR
  • Ebrary
  • Ebook Library
  • EBSCO Ebooks
  • MyiLibrary
  • Dawsonera (UK)

  • Shopping Cart:

    • For hardcover/paperback orders:

      For hardcover/paperback orders in the United States, Canada, Latin America, Asia, and Australia

      Hardcover: $35.00 ISBN: 9780691121581

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

      Hardcover: £24.95 ISBN: 9780691121581

      Prices subject to change without notice

      File created: 4/17/2014

    Questions and comments to: webmaster@press.princeton.edu
    Princeton University Press

    New Book E-mails
    New In Print
    PUP Blog
    Videos/Audios
    Princeton APPS
    Sample Chapters
    Subjects
    Series
    Catalogs
    Textbooks
    For Reviewers
    Class Use
    Rights
    Permissions
    Ordering
    Recent Awards
    Princeton Shorts
    Freshman Reading
    PUP Europe
    About Us
    Contact Us
    Links
    F.A.Q.
    PUP Home


    Bookmark and Share
    Send me emails
    about new books in:
    Earth Sciences
    More Choices
    Email:
    Country:
    Name: