A Brain For All Seasons: Human Evolution and Abrupt Climate Change

Paperback | November 1, 2003

byWilliam H. Calvin

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Winner of the 2002 Phi Beta Kappa Award in Science

Mankind has recently come to the shocking realization that our ancestors survived hundreds of abrupt and severe changes to Earth's climate. In this unique travelogue, William H. Calvin takes us around the globe and back in time, showing us how such cycles of cool, crash, and burn provided the impetus for enormous increases in the intelligence and complexity of human beings—and warning us of human activities that could trigger similarly massive shifts in the planet's climate.

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Winner of the 2002 Phi Beta Kappa Award in ScienceMankind has recently come to the shocking realization that our ancestors survived hundreds of abrupt and severe changes to Earth's climate. In this unique travelogue, William H. Calvin takes us around the globe and back in time, showing us how such cycles of cool, crash, and burn provid...

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Winner of the 2002 Phi Beta Kappa Award in ScienceMankind has recently come to the shocking realization that our ancestors survived hundreds of abrupt and severe changes to Earth's climate. In this unique travelogue, William H. Calvin takes us around the globe and back in time, showing us how such cycles of cool, crash, and burn provid...

William H. Calvin is an affiliate professor of psychiatry and behavioral sciences at the University of Washington School of Medicine in Seattle. He is the author or coauthor of ten books, including Lingua ex Machina, The Cerebral Code, How Brains Think, Conversations with Neil's Brain, and The River That Flows Uphill. The last third of...

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Format:PaperbackPublished:November 1, 2003Publisher:University Of Chicago PressLanguage:English

The following ISBNs are associated with this title:

ISBN - 10:0226092038

ISBN - 13:9780226092034

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Table of Contents

Preamble
51°N 0°E Darwins home—Catastrophic gradualism
51°N 0°W Evolution House, Kew Gardens—The Darwinian Quality Bootstrap
51°N 1°E Down among the fossils—All of those chimp-human differences
49°N 2°E Musée de lHomme in Paris—The Ghost of Habitats Past
50°N 8°E Bockenheim—Tracing roots back to the Big Bang
52°N 5°E Layover Limbo—IQ and evolutions package deals
22°N 14°E Contemplating the Sahara—Why climate can suddenly flip
0°N 22°E Latitude Zero—Population fluctuations and refugia
19°S 23°E Okavango Delta—The island advantage
25°S 16°E Sossusvlei Dunes—Hominid opportunities in deserts?
26°S 28°E Sterkfontein Caves—The big change in hominid diet
34°S 18°E Cape of Good Hope—The turning point that wasn't
1°S 37°E Nairobi—Creating new species from old ones
2°S 36°E Olorgesailie—The easiest tool of all
0°S 36°E Kariandusi—A layer cake of handaxes
0°S 36°E Lake Nakuru—Where droughts cause a boom time
1°N 36°E Lake Baringo—The earliest hominids
1°S 36°E Lake Naivasha—Droughts even in good times
3°S 35°E Olduvai Gorge—Degrees of separation
1°S 35°E Maasai Mara—The Crash-Boom-Boom cycle
20°N 15°E Libya by moonlight—The last big step toward humans
52°N 5°E Layover Limbo (again)—The Little Ice Age and its witch hunts
56°N 13°E Copenhagens ice cores—Slow ice ages and abrupt whiplashes
56°N 13°E The plane where its always noon—How ice age climate got the shakes
60°N 11°E High above Oslo—The ocean has a conveyor belt
63°N 6°E Out over the sinking Gulf Stream—Dans coffee cream trick
71°N 8°W Jan Mayen Island—Flushing the Gulf Stream
72°N 12°W The Greenland Sea—Losing the first Panama Canal
74°N 19°W Greenland fjords—What stops the conveyor
75°N 40°W Atop Greenland—Why melting can cause cooling
78°N 69°W Thule—Rube Goldberg cause-and-effect
73°N 95°W Somerset Island—North Poles arent what they used to be
68°N 105°W Crossing the North American coast—How we might stabilize climate
62°N 114°W Yellowknife, Northwest Territories—Feedbacks in the greenhouse
49°N 123°W Bumpy border crossing—Managing high-risk situations
Afterthoughts
Acknowledgments
Glossary
Recommended Reading
Chapter Notes
Subject Index