In weniger als einer Minute können Sie mit dem Lesen von On Growth and Form (Canto) auf Ihrem Kindle beginnen. Sie haben noch keinen Kindle? Hier kaufen oder mit einer unserer kostenlosen Kindle Lese-Apps sofort zu lesen anfangen.

An Ihren Kindle oder ein anderes Gerät senden


Kostenlos testen

Jetzt kostenlos reinlesen

An Ihren Kindle oder ein anderes Gerät senden

Der Artikel ist in folgender Variante leider nicht verfügbar
Keine Abbildung vorhanden für
Keine Abbildung vorhanden

On Growth and Form (Canto) [Kindle Edition]

D'Arcy Thompson , John Tyler Bonner

Kindle-Preis: EUR 12,24 Inkl. MwSt. und kostenloser drahtloser Lieferung über Amazon Whispernet

Kostenlose Kindle-Leseanwendung Jeder kann Kindle Bücher lesen  selbst ohne ein Kindle-Gerät  mit der KOSTENFREIEN Kindle App für Smartphones, Tablets und Computer.

Geben Sie Ihre E-Mail-Adresse oder Mobiltelefonnummer ein, um die kostenfreie App zu beziehen.

Weitere Ausgaben

Amazon-Preis Neu ab Gebraucht ab
Kindle Edition EUR 12,24  
Taschenbuch --  


First published in 1917, On Growth and Form was at once revolutionary and conservative. Scottish embryologist D'Arcy Wentworth Thompson (1860-1948) grew up in the newly cast shadow of Darwinism, and he took issue with some of the orthodoxies of the day--not because they were necessarily wrong, he said, but because they violated the spirit of Occam's razor, in which simple explanations are preferable to complex ones. In the case of such subjects as the growth of eggs, skeletons, and crystals, Thompson cited mathematical authority: these were matters of "economy and transformation," and they could be explained by laws governing surface tension and the like. (He doubtless would have enjoyed the study of fractals, which came after his time.) In On Growth and Form, he examines such matters as the curve of frequency or bell curve (which explains variations in height among 10-year-old schoolboys, the florets of a daisy, the distribution of darts on a cork board, the thickness of stripes along a zebra's flanks, the shape of mountain ranges and sand dunes) and spirals (which turn up everywhere in nature you look: in the curve of a seashell, the swirl of water boiling in a saucepan, the sweep of faraway nebulae, the twist of a strand of DNA, the turns of the labyrinth in which the legendary Minotaur lived out its days). The result is an astonishingly varied book that repays skimming and close reading alike. English biologist Sir Peter Medawar called Thompson's tome "beyond comparison the finest work of literature in all the annals of science that have been recorded in the English tongue." --Gregory McNamee

Über das Produkt

D'Arcy Thompson's classic On Growth and Form looks at the way things grow and the shapes they take. Analysing biological processes in their mathematical and physical aspects, this historic work, first published in 1917, has also become renowned for the sheer poetry of its descriptions. It is now available for a wider readership including a foreword by one of today's great populisers of science.


  • Format: Kindle Edition
  • Dateigröße: 5719 KB
  • Seitenzahl der Print-Ausgabe: 346 Seiten
  • Gleichzeitige Verwendung von Geräten: Bis zu 4 Geräte gleichzeitig, je nach vom Verlag festgelegter Grenze
  • Verlag: Cambridge University Press; Auflage: 1 (31. Juli 1992)
  • Verkauf durch: Amazon Media EU S.à r.l.
  • Sprache: Englisch
  • Text-to-Speech (Vorlesemodus): Aktiviert
  • X-Ray:
  • Word Wise: Nicht aktiviert
  • Amazon Bestseller-Rang: #659.006 Bezahlt in Kindle-Shop (Siehe Top 100 Bezahlt in Kindle-Shop)

  •  Ist der Verkauf dieses Produkts für Sie nicht akzeptabel?


Es gibt noch keine Kundenrezensionen auf
5 Sterne
4 Sterne
3 Sterne
2 Sterne
1 Sterne
Die hilfreichsten Kundenrezensionen auf (beta) 4.0 von 5 Sternen  9 Rezensionen
191 von 194 Kunden fanden die folgende Rezension hilfreich
2.0 von 5 Sternen Canto: An unfortunate redaction of a timeless classic 22. Juni 2005
Von Golan Levin - Veröffentlicht auf
Don't get me wrong -- "On Growth and Form" is one of my absolute top favorite books of all time. Possibly my favorite book, in fact. This review is a warning to make sure you get the right imprint.

Unfortunately some publishers think that they know better than D'Arcy Thompson, and cut out more than half of the original material. After all, nobody these days actually looks at equations, right? Well I do, and the pathetic edition by Canto (368 pages) weighs with less than 33% of the material in the modern unexpurgated reprint by Dover (1116 pages).

Amazingly enough, the redacted Canto version costs nearly the same as the Dover complete. If you care about this material, take care to get all of it.
25 von 25 Kunden fanden die folgende Rezension hilfreich
2.0 von 5 Sternen How to ruin a classic book with an abridged edition 6. Mai 2008
Von chelsea girl - Veröffentlicht auf
Format:Taschenbuch|Verifizierter Kauf
When I ordered the book, I didn't even realize the edition was abridged. The book arrived suspiciously smaller than I expected it, almost half size. I thought maybe my memory deceived me, but apparently no.

In the introduction of the editor, Mr. John Tyler Bonner, is so kind as to explain that he mistook a classic book on organism and form, for a scientific one. In order to make the book accessible to general public (who said it was not?) and to "correct" Mr. D'Arcy's writing, Mr. Bonner removed the "dangerous" chapters with "vague" (always according to him) arguments, and the "out-of-date" material, and finally to turned D'Arcy's book into his own.

What I want to clarify is that I am not giving two stars to Mr. D'Arcy's book, for this book I did not read. Instead I am giving 2 stars to Mr. Bonner, to Cambridge University Press, to Canto and to Amazon (for not noting this is an abridged piece of work) for destroying a classic.

REMINDER: THE BOOK IS ABRIDGED EDITION, and the editor not so great
13 von 14 Kunden fanden die folgende Rezension hilfreich
5.0 von 5 Sternen an abridged version of this wondrous book is *also* a good thing 16. April 2009
Von Fiona Webster - Veröffentlicht auf
I, too, am a longtime fan of D'Arcy Thompson's endearing (enduring) classic. I've read the discussion. I appreciate very much that Golan Levin, in "Canto: An unfortunate redaction of a timeless classic," and others as well, have made it clear to Amazon customers that the Canto (Cambridge University Press) version of this book is radically abridged, as compared to Dover's (apparently) unabridged edition. This kind of comparative information--about a book's being published under different editions, and what those editions contain--is the kind of crucial info which, as things stand, we customers have to contribute.

It's unfortunate, if understandable, that the bulk of the laudatory reviews here don't specify which edition these people read. Some of them appear to be from scientists and/or mathematicians: they are, perhaps, readers of the unabridged version. Viktor Blasjo's 5-star review *does* specify: he reports from the Dover unabridged, and a great report it is, too. He convinced me to pick up a copy.

Other reviewers seem to have come to D'Arcy Thompson from a more varied background, for their words remind me of my own experience: I first read this book at the age of 19, breathlessly turning the pages, filled to the brim with a sense of growing wonder about what science could do. In Thompson's hands, science opened up the secrets of Nature, right before my eyes. I'd read a fair amount of literature for my age, so from a more sophisticated angle, I relished the many passages of elegant writing--charmingly earnest, sometimes almost passionate. (Thompson's literary excellence comes in spurts, folks, so be patient.) "On Growth and Form" came, in time, to have a big influence on me: I'd been on the fence about science vs. literature for a major, and Thompson was the first in a series of dominoes that toppled me into a chemistry major, followed by medical school and becoming a doctor.

So what edition was this marvel of a book that I read? The abridged version, the 1961 edition, from the very same publisher (Cambridge University Press) and editor (John Tyler Bonner, PhD., Professor of Biology, Princeton University) to whom Levin and others have devoted so many unkind words.

I don't know, but I rather suspect, that at least a few of the other highly positive reviews have come from people who've had their experience of "On Growth and Form" with that very same abridged version. I did hear from someone in university publishing circles, in the '70s, that it was a surprising seller for such an odd little book.

Two of the other reviewers' comments, in particular, caught my attention:

"I have recommended it to home schoolers as the
best single book to inform a teenager about physics,
chemistry, biology, & practical thinking."

"This could be read by a junior or senior in high
school. But, I think it would be more appropriate
for college."

Can these people be talking about an 1100-page book? I'll grant any young person the ability to read anything, but the attention span, the sheer time it would take, to read 1100 pages... I just don't think they're talking about the unabridged version. One of the reasons Prof. Bonner gives for abridging the text, is to streamline the presentation of the ideas so as to keep the reader's attention. Is that *so* heretical? This is a master teacher talking here!

Oops--I got ahead of myself. Yes, Bonner was in fact *my* teacher. I had a real stroke of luck: John Tyler Bonner was my professor of Introductory Biology, freshman year. I savored his verbal brilliance in the lecture hall, and especially enjoyed getting to know his gentle, lively person, on various social occasions. His research was in slime molds--mind-boggling critters who change their form from a sheetlike syncytium to tall stalks like lollipops, then back again--an organism well-suited to the ideas of Thompson regarding stretching and shrinking of surfaces according to mathematically describable patterns.

I was an undergrad in the years 1973-77, by which time Professor Bonner's 1961 edit of D'Arcy Thompson's "On Growth and Form" was churning through multiple printings as an attractive, popular trade paperback. I knew lots of people who were reading it, or had it on their shelves. It was never assigned for any course (not even Prof. Bonner's Intro Biology), but somehow we all read it--science, poli-sci, history, English majors alike. But you don't have to go back to college with me to read at least some of what we read: Prof. Bonner's original 1961 introduction is in this Cambridge/Canto edition, plus his rousing 1992 follow-up. I haven't seen the book, so I don't know anything about the nature or extent of the re-edits in 1992, but Bonner does say a bit about them.

Just in case someone missed that: I do not know about the nature or extent of the 1992 re-edits. So I'm not speaking for the quality of this specific edition--just for the 1961 Cambridge/Canto abridged edition that I came to know and love so well. It seems to bode well, though, that Prof. Bonner is still at the helm.

More generally, though, I'm speaking for the notion that there's room for both, or many: a classic book is important enough to deserve more than one treatment. Look at all the editions of classic works of fiction: abridged, unabridged, children's version, illustrated #1, illustrated #2, comic book, annotated, revised w/ newly-discovered author's notes, corrected edition after original hand-written manuscript found in trunk buried on Treasure Island...

You can read Prof. Bonner's '61 introduction (which I think is lovely, but then I would) and his '92 follow-up on the new edition (he comments insightfully about the continuing relevance of Thompson's ideas to the past 30 years' advances in biology). You can also read the foreword by Stephen Jay Gould. (I'm surprised Amazon didn't get *his* name into the author field!) Just use the oh-so-helpful LOOK INSIDE! feature. To read the Intro, do a search on "Editor's", click the first hit, read & page forward as far as you can, then click the next instance of "Editor's", and so on. (You may have to improvise a bit to read the whole intro in order.) To read Gould's forward, just search on "Gould."

I strongly encourage those of you who are interested in this issue of page-lengths of different editions, degrees of reduction of the text, etc., to use LOOK INSIDE! and read what Bonner has to say on that point. Some of the reasons he gives for further shortening of the work are truly Thompsonian. =grin= And, thanks to Amazon, you can read those remarks just as you might've in a bookstore--while you're considering which edition to buy, or whether to buy both.

Enough. Enjoy. The more the merrier.

Oh--the five stars? Those are for the Platonic ideal of D'Arcy Thompson's "On Growth and Form."
5 von 5 Kunden fanden die folgende Rezension hilfreich
5.0 von 5 Sternen A classic book, unlike any other 3. September 2008
Von John Duncan - Veröffentlicht auf
Most biologists have heard of D'Arcy Thompson's famous book, and have seen his drawings that show how apparently different animals -- fish, for example -- can be transformed into one another by distorting the coordinate system. Sometimes a simple skewing or stretching will suffice, but in other cases more complicated transformations are needed. Few, however, have read the book, and few realize that the famous drawings come right at the end of a long and detailed argument in which D'Arcy Thompson establishes the importance of purely physical considerations in deciding the forms taken by organisms.

D'Arcy Thompson was not opposed to the idea of natural selection, and recognized that it was part of the explanation of evolution. However, he was writing at the beginning of the 20th century at a time when he felt that natural selection was regarded as the complete and only explanation of evolution, and he wanted to show that it wasn't as simple as that. In a modern book, Richard Dawkins's "The Ancestor's Tale", we can read that "Animal shapes are malleable like plasticine. A fish can change in evolutionary time to whatever unfishy shape is required for its way of life." This is the point of view that D'Arcy Thompson considered exaggerated, because he argued that there are many physical constraints that limit this infinite malleability (less, perhaps, for animals that live in the water than for land animals that must take account of gravity, but real nonetheless). He shows that many features of animals must and do obey the same rules as those followed by engineers in designing bridges.

D'Arcy Thompson's style is quite unlike any other -- "scholarly" would be an understatement -- and much of the book can be read for the pleasure of the language. Even at the time of writing (originally 1917) it must have been optimistic to think that scientist readers could cope with abundant quotations from other writers left untranslated from Greek, Latin, German or French. (In the unabridged 2nd edition that I once leafed through but have not read, I think there were some in Spanish and Italian, but I didn't find any of these in the abridged edition.) Most of the French quotations are quite important for the argument, and I suppose the same is probably true for the others, so a modern reader inevitably loses some of the sense. The most extreme example is a whole page devoted to a quotation from Buffon in support of the author's contention that the popular idea that honeybees are brilliant engineers is due to a failure to understand the purely physical constraints involved in constructing a honeycomb.

Some of the other reviewers have commented that in preparing this abridged edition John Tyler Bonner emasculated the original. Although I have some sympathy with this criticism I think it is too strong. For many readers the effect of reading the abridged edition will be to stimulate them to read the book in full -- as I certainly shall now do.
3 von 3 Kunden fanden die folgende Rezension hilfreich
3.0 von 5 Sternen Oh for heaven's sake 23. Februar 2011
Von Brian Jayne - Veröffentlicht auf
Bonner's abridgment is a fine introduction to an interesting book and is perhaps getting too bad a rap here; anyone who wants to compare it to the original 1917 edition (or the 1945 American edition) is welcome to hit the Internet archive and download either, since both are out of copyright and freely available.
Waren diese Rezensionen hilfreich?   Wir wollen von Ihnen hören.

Kunden diskutieren

Das Forum zu diesem Produkt
Diskussion Antworten Jüngster Beitrag
Noch keine Diskussionen

Fragen stellen, Meinungen austauschen, Einblicke gewinnen
Neue Diskussion starten
Erster Beitrag:
Eingabe des Log-ins

Kundendiskussionen durchsuchen
Alle Amazon-Diskussionen durchsuchen

Ähnliche Artikel finden