The Best American Science Writing

Alan Lightman, Editor, Jesse Cohen, Editor Harper Perennial $13.95 (300p) ISBN 978-0-06-072642-3
The editor's claim that we are now living in the ""golden age"" of science writing is borne out in this superb anthology of pop-science essays and news reports. Progressing from the hardest to the softest fields, the eclectic selections include think pieces on the conceptual foundations of physics, updates on cutting-edge controversies in genetic engineering and stem-cell research, profiles of leading researchers, ecological meditations and debunkings of the latest scientific fads and frauds. Among the brightest in a stellar lineup are Frank Wilczek's exploration of the worldview embodied in Newtonian mechanics; Jim Holt's humorous look at cosmologists' varying scenarios for the end of the world; Philip Alcabes's critique of the current panic over bio-terrorism; and Mark Solms's account of the return of repressed Freudian theories of the mind in contemporary neuropsychology. The essays are well attuned to a general audience, but scientists will also find them full of intriguing information and interpretations. The result is a wonderful collection that expands the mind without overwhelming it.
Reviewed on: 09/01/2005
Release date: 09/01/2005
Hardcover - 336 pages - 978-0-06-072641-6
Hardcover - 352 pages - 978-0-06-621162-6
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