“FREE” books on Evolution … yes really …

The National Center for Science education has lots of FREE evolution book excerpt downloads (PDFs).

Who? – The NCSE are a not-for-profit, membership organization providing information and resources for schools, parents and concerned citizens working to keep evolution in public school science education. (Dr Eugenie Scott is a director). Mostly supported by teachers and professional scientists.

Why? – Education on evolution is their remit.

Is this Legal? – Yep, since these are only excerpts, so authors/publishers take the view that you would then be tempted into buying the full book.

For how long? – They have had this offer on the table since 2009, I stumbled across a link to it the other day.

Here is a sample of the list …

Am I a Monkey? (Johns Hopkins University Press) by Francisco J. Ayala

Charles Darwin’s On the Origin Of Species: A Graphic Adaptation (Rodale) by Michael Keller

The Darwin Archipelago (Yale University Press) by Steve Jones

The Darwinian Tourist (Oxford University Press) by Christopher Wills

Darwin’s Lost World (Oxford University Press) by Martin Brasier

Darwin’s Armada: Four Voyages and the Battle for the Theory of Evolution (WW Norton) by Iain McCalman

Darwin’s Universe: Evolution from A to Z (UC Press) by Richard Milner

Evidence of Evolution (Abrams Books) by Susan Middleton and Mary Ellen Hannibal

The Evidence for Evolution (University of Chicago Press) by Alan R. Rogers

Evolution, 2nd Edition (Sinauer Associates) by Douglas J. Futuyma

Evolution, Creationism, and the Battle to Control America’s Classrooms (Cambridge University Press) by Berkman and Plutzer

Evolution vs. Creationism, 2nd edition (Greenwood) by Eugenie C. Scott

Evolution: How We and All Living Things Came to Be (Kids Can Press) by Daniel Loxton

Evolution: The Story of Life (UC Press) by Douglas Palmer

Evolution: The Story of Life on Earth (Hill and Wang) by Jay Hosler. Illustrated by Kevin Cannon and Zander Cannon

The Evolutionary World: How adaptation explains everything from seashells to civilization (Thomas Dunne Books) by Geerat J. Vermeij

The Fossil Hunter (Palgrave Macmillan) by Shelley Emling

How and Why Species Multiply: The Radiation of Darwin’s Finches (Princeton University Press) by Peter R. Grant and B. Rosemary Grant

In the Light of Evolution: Essays from the Laboratory and Field (Roberts & Company Publishers) edited by Jonathan B. Losos

Life Ascending: The Ten Great Inventions of Evolution (W.W. Norton) by Nick Lane

Merchants of Doubt: How a Handful of Scientists Obscured the Truth on Issues from Tobacco Smoke to Global Warming (Bloomsbury Press) by Naomi Oreskes and Erik M. Conway

The Missing Link: An Inquiry Approach for Teaching All Students About Evolution (Heinemann) by Lee Meadows

Nonsense on Stilts: How to Tell Science from Bunk (University Of Chicago Press) by Massimo Pigliucci

Go check out their list here.

Here are some more Links on Evolution

  • One of the best places to learn about evolution is the website Understanding Evolution, sponsored by the Museum of Paleontology, University of California, Berkeley.
  • Another good starting point is this set of FAQs about evolution, from PBS.
  • The online notes for Evolution by Mark Ridley provide a more advanced presentation.
  • There is also NCSE’s Evolution Primers are written by NCSE’s scientific staff to explain key concepts or findings in evolution that are frequently misrepresented by creationists. Note that because the emphasis of the collection of primers mirrors the focus of creationists, and not of that of modern evolutionary theory, the collection of primers does not by any means give a complete picture of evolution.

Also … Here are some resources especially for teachers:

Also … a comprehensive NSCE further reading list is found here.

Its a vast topic, so if it is all new to you and you are feeling a bit lost, then here are some primers from the NSCE to help get you started.

Finally … (OK, there is lots more) …but this I thought was fun … Click here to learn about “Project Steve“, then NSCE tongue-in-cheek parody of a long-standing creationist tradition of amassing lists of “scientists who doubt evolution” or “scientists who dissent from Darwinism.”. Project Steve pokes fun at this practice and, because “Steves” are only about 1% of scientists, it also makes the point that tens of thousands of scientists support evolution. And it honors the late Stephen Jay Gould, evolutionary biologist, NCSE supporter, and friend.


Leave a Reply

%d bloggers like this: