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The Selfish Gene

544 pages, 2016

science & nature

science & nature

1064 books

The Selfish Gene, by Richard Dawkins, is a book that has sold over one million copies and has been translated into over 25 languages.

It has been critically acclaimed for its ability to articulate the gene-eye view of evolution. In this imaginative and powerful work, Dawkins discusses organisms as vehicles for their replication and gives center stage to these persistent units of information: genes. Forty years later, these insights remain as relevant today as they were when The Selfish Gene was first published in 1976.

This anniversary edition includes an epilogue from the author discussing the continuing relevance of these ideas in evolutionary biology today, as well as the original prefaces and foreword, and extracts from early reviews."

Understanding the Concept of 'Selfish' Genes

In The Selfish Gene, Richard Dawkins introduces us to the idea that genes are 'selfish'. He doesn't mean they have feelings or desires. Instead, he's saying that genes are programmed to ensure their own survival, even if it means sacrificing the organism they live in. It's a fascinating concept that will make you see evolution in a whole new light.

The Role of Genes in Evolution

Dawkins explores how genes play a crucial role in evolution. He suggests that it's not species or individuals that evolve, but genes themselves. They do this by influencing the traits and behaviors of the organisms they inhabit. This book will make you rethink everything you thought you knew about evolution.

The Power of Altruism

While genes may be 'selfish', Dawkins also discusses the power of altruism. He explains how genes can promote altruistic behavior in organisms, as it can increase the chances of the genes being passed on. It's a fascinating look into the complex interplay between genes and behavior.

The Concept of 'Memes'

Did you know that the term 'meme' was first coined by Richard Dawkins in The Selfish Gene? He uses it to describe how cultural information spreads from person to person, much like genes spread from generation to generation. It's a concept that's more relevant today than ever, in the age of viral internet content.

The Impact of Genes on Human Behavior

One of the most intriguing aspects of The Selfish Gene is how it delves into the impact of genes on human behavior. Dawkins suggests that our genes may influence our actions more than we realize. If you've ever wondered why we behave the way we do, this book will give you plenty to think about.

Quotes 5

The Selfish Gene by Richard Dawkins is a profound insight into the behavior of living things, on par with the works of Darwin himself.

Bill GatesBill Gates - Microsoft Co-founder

The Selfish Gene by Richard Dawkins revolutionized the way we see natural selection - the process that drives evolution.

Steven PinkerSteven Pinker - Cognitive Psychologist

The Selfish Gene by Richard Dawkins is a game-changer, it's a book that makes you rethink what you thought you knew about life on Earth.

Daniel DennettDaniel Dennett - Philosopher, Writer

The Selfish Gene by Richard Dawkins is a landmark in the field of biology. It's a must-read for anyone interested in evolution and the meaning of life.

Matt RidleyMatt Ridley - Science Writer

The Selfish Gene by Richard Dawkins is a seminal work that reshapes our understanding of the very nature of life.

Neil deGrasse TysonNeil deGrasse Tyson - Astrophysicist
Bill GatesSteven PinkerDaniel DennettMatt RidleyNeil deGrasse Tyson


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Matt Ridley

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