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Trees of Life
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Systematics and the exact tracing of evolutionary pathways increasingly continue their renaissance as a major enterprise of biology. Theodore W. Pietsch's Trees of Life: A Visual History of Evolution is an excellent way to study and think about the historical process that is under way. -- E. O. Wilson, University Research Professor Emeritus, Harvard University

Table of Contents

Preface
Introduction
Brackets and Tables, Circles and Maps, 1554-1778
Early Botanical Networks and Trees, 1766-1815
The First Evolutionary Tree, 1786-1820
Diverse and Unusual Trees of the Early Nineteenth Century, 1817-1834
The Rule of Five, 1819-1854
Pre-Darwinian Branching Diagrams, 1828-1858
Evolution and the Trees of Charles Darwin, 1837-1868
The Trees of Ernst Haeckel, 1866-1905
Post-Darwinian Nonconformists, 1868-1896
More Late Nineteenth-Century Trees, 1874-1897
Trees of the Early Twentieth Century, 1901-1930
The Trees of Alfred Sherwood Romer, 1933-1966
Additional Trees of the Mid-Twentieth Century, 1931-1943
The Trees of William King Gregory, 1938-1951
Hints of New Approaches, 1954-1970
Phenograms and Cladograms, 1958-1966
Early Molecular Trees, 1962-1987
Notable Trees of the Past Four Decades, 1970-2010
Primeval Branches and Universal Trees of Life, 1997-2010
Glossary
Notes
References
Index

About the Author

Theodore W. Pietsch is Dorothy T. Gilbert Professor in the School of Aquatic and Fishery Sciences and Curator of Fishes at the Burke Museum of Natural History and Culture at the University of Washington in Seattle. He is the author of more than a dozen books, including The Curious Death of Peter Artedi: A Mystery in the History of Science and Oceanic Anglerfishes: Extraordinary Diversity in the Deep Sea.

Reviews

For those with an interest in the history of evolution. Birdbooker Report Trees of Life is the sort of book that instantly fascinates... This exemplary work is an important contribution to the history of evolution. Taxon Better than any work before it... Anyone interested in the history of phylogenetics and the study of evolutionary relationships should certainly pick up this wonderful book. In a field advancing as quickly as systematic biology, it is nice to look back at the past once in a while. -- Prosanta Chakrabarty Systematic Biology Trees of Life is a beautiful book, and the diversity of beautiful images within its pages should be of interest to historians of science, biologists, folks working at the intersection of science and art, and, honestly, anyone with a genuine interest in science and the study of the natural world. This is a taxonomy of trees of life, if you will. -- Michael Barton Dispersal of Darwin Evolution is often visualized as a branching tree, with the format depending on what the author desires to show. Evolutionary biologist Pietsch is more interested in the history of such trees as art. Choice With the concept of evolution now often iconified to the point of misrepresentation, Trees of Life reminds us that both the idea and its representation were-and are-fluid, debated, and reconstructed. -- Camillia Matuk Science Trees of Life commemorates the tree as a visual representation of life; science buffs will revel in this dazzling forest of transformation. -- Jen Forbus Shelf Awareness Looking at the ways images of trees have been used to depict the relationships between organisms over the past five centuries, Pietsch explores how the visual history of these 'trees of life' reveals changing human understandings of evolution. ISLE: Interdisciplinary Studies in Literature and Environment Pietsch, an evolutionary biologist, gathers together and explains more than 200 'tree of life' diagrams going back 450 years. These branch-like drawings-some simple, some incredibly elaborate-were made to illustrate interconnectedness between organisms and the process of evolution. They can be seen as scientific documents, artistic renderings, or both. -- John Lewis Baltimore Magazine The book testifies to Pietsch's encyclopaedic ambition and his unmistakable passion for the subject. His collection is rich and wide in scope... Because of this diversity, the book provides a very stimulating overview of (Western) attempts to make graphic sense of life and its history on this planet. It has no rival as an introduction to the subject. -- Nils Petter Hellstrom Journal Archives of Natural History Of interest primarily to naturalists and historians, the collection of symbolic relationships presents a unique evolutionary transition through time. -- Aron Row San Francisco Book Review Notable in this work is a nice balance between text and graphics... the book is an excellent source not only of the diversity of diagrams, but of the meaning behind each. -- E.O. Wiley Quarterly Review of Biology A luminous book... For classroom use, the brevity and simplicity of the introductory remarks will serve instructors who wish to teach these images' and their authors' significance to the history of biology and the history of scientific illustration. Biologists, historians of science, scholars interested in the intersections between art and design and science will find an abundance of images and wise commentary that reveals new details with each reading. -- Christine Manganaro Journal of the History of Biology The author has given us a new insight into the varying approaches to evolutionary trees, and an essential source book for the history of evolutionary concepts. -- Gina Douglas Biological Journal of the Linnean Society

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