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On the Origin of Species [物种起源]

所属栏目: Others

点    击: 2376

作    者:Charles Darwin

小说大小:1.05 MB

推荐等级:2级

整理时间:2010-07-09

内容简介

《物种起源》(The Origin of Species)是达尔文(Charles Robert Darwin, 1809 – 1882)论述生物进化的重要著作,出版于1859年11月24日。该书大概是19世纪最具争议的著作,其中的观点大多数为当今的科学界普遍接受。在该书中,达尔文首次提出了进化论的观点。他使用自己在1830年代环球科学考察中积累的资料,达尔文试图证明物种的演化是通过自然选择(天择)和人工选择(人择)的方式实现的。

必读理由
  影响世界历史进程的经典著作
  震撼世界的10本书之一
  1985年美国《生活》杂志评选的人类有史以来的最佳图书
  1986年英国《读书》杂志推荐的理想藏书
  所阐述的进化论是19世纪自然科学的三大发现之一
  人类思想发展史上一座最伟大的划时代的里程碑


Charles Darwin's On the Origin of Species, published on 24 November 1859, is a work of scientific literature which is considered to be the foundation of evolutionary biology. Its full title was On the Origin of Species by Means of Natural Selection, or the Preservation of Favoured Races in the Struggle for Life. For the sixth edition of 1872, the short title was changed to The Origin of Species. Darwin's book introduced the theory that populations evolve over the course of generations through a process of natural selection. It presented a body of evidence that the diversity of life arose by common descent through a branching pattern of evolution. Darwin included evidence that he had gathered on the Beagle expedition in the 1830s and his subsequent findings from research, correspondence, and experimentation.

Various evolutionary ideas had already been proposed to explain new findings in biology. There was growing support for such ideas among dissident anatomists and the general public, but during the first half of the 19th century the English scientific establishment was closely tied to the Church of England, while science was part of natural theology. Ideas about the transmutation of species were controversial as they conflicted with the beliefs that species were unchanging parts of a designed hierarchy and that humans were unique, unrelated to animals. The political and theological implications were intensely debated, but transmutation was not accepted by the scientific mainstream.

The book was written for non-specialist readers and attracted widespread interest upon its publication. As Darwin was an eminent scientist, his findings were taken seriously and the evidence he presented generated scientific, philosophical, and religious discussion. The debate over the book contributed to the campaign by T.H. Huxley and his fellow members of the X Club to secularise science by promoting scientific naturalism. Within two decades there was widespread scientific agreement that evolution, with a branching pattern of common descent, had occurred, but scientists were slow to give natural selection the significance that Darwin thought appropriate. During the "eclipse of Darwinism" from the 1880s to the 1930s, various other mechanisms of evolution were given more credit. With the development of the modern evolutionary synthesis in the 1930s and 1940s, Darwin's concept of evolutionary adaptation through natural selection became central to modern evolutionary theory, now the unifying concept of the life sciences.

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