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The Edge of Evolution: The Search for the Limits of Darwinism [Kindle Edition]

Michael J. Behe
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Produktbeschreibungen

Pressestimmen

"With this book, Michael Behe shows that he is truly an independent thinker of the first order. He carefully examines the data of evolution, along the way making an argument for universal common descent that will make him no friends among young-earth creationists, and draws in new facts, especially the data on malaria, that have not been part of the public debate at all up to now. This book will take the intelligent design debate into new territory and represents a unique contribution to the longstanding question of philosophy: Can observation of the physical world guide our thinking about religious questions?"
-- Professor David Snoke, Department of Physics and Astronomy, University of Pittsburgh

"In The Edge of Evolution Michael Behe carefully assesses the evidence of what Darwin's mechanism of random mutation and selection can achieve in well documented cases, and shows that even in those cases that maximize its power as a creative force it has only been able to generate very trivial examples of evolutionary change. Could such an apparently impotent and mindless force really have built the sophisticated molecular devices found throughout nature? The answer, he insists, is no. The only common-sense explanation is intelligent design."
-- Michael Denton, M.D., Ph.D., author of Nature's Destiny

"In crystal-clear prose Behe systematically shreds the central dogma of atheistic science, the doctrine of the random universe. This book, like the natural phenomena it so elegantly describes, shows the unmistakable signs of a very deep intelligence at work."
-- JEffrey M. Schwartz, M.D., Research Psychiatrist, UCLA, and author of The Mind & The Brain

"Until the past decade and the genomics revolution, Darwin's theory rested on indirect evidence and reasonable speculation. Now, however, we have begun to scratch the surface of direct evidence, of which this book offers the best possible treatment. Though many critics won't want to admit it, The Edge of Evolution is very balanced, careful, ¬and devastating. A tremendously important book."
-- Dr. Philip Skell, Evan Pugh Professor of Chemistry, Emeritus, at Pennsylvania State University, and member of the National Academy of Sciences

"With this book, Michael Behe shows that he is truly an independent thinker of the first order. In a day when the media present all issues in the football metaphor as two teams fighting, the intelligent design debate is presented simplistically as authors who are lapdogs for young-earth creationists versus evolutionists who are lapdogs for atheists. Michael Behe is no lapdog. He carefully examines the data of evolution, along the way making an argument for universal common descent that will make him no friends among young-earth creationists, and draws in new facts, especially the data on malaria, that have not been part of the public debate at all up to now. This book will take the intelligent design debate into new territory and represents a unique contribution on the longstanding question of philosophy: can observation of the physical world guide our thinking about religious questions?"
- Professor David Snoke, Department of Physics and Astronomy, University of Pittsburgh

"Until the past decade and the genomics revolution, Darwin's theory rested on indirect evidence and reasonable speculation. Now, however, we have begun to scratch the surface of direct evidence, of which this book offers the best possible treatment. Though many critics won't want to admit it, The Edge of Evolution is very balanced, careful, and devastating. A tremendously important book."
-- Dr. Philip Skell, Evan Pugh Professor of Chemistry, Emeritus, at Pennsylvania State University, and member of the National Academy of Sciences

Kurzbeschreibung

When Michael J. Behe's first book, Darwin's Black Box, was published in 1996, it launched the intelligent design movement. Critics howled, yet hundreds of thousands of readers -- and a growing number of scientists -- were intrigued by Behe's claim that Darwinism could not explain the complex machinery of the cell.

Now, in his long-awaited follow-up, Behe presents far more than a challenge to Darwinism: He presents the evidence of the genetics revolution -- the first direct evidence of nature's mutational pathways -- to radically redefine the debate about Darwinism.

How much of life does Darwin's theory explain? Most scientists believe it accounts for everything from the machinery of the cell to the history of life on earth. Darwin's ideas have been applied to law, culture, and politics.

But Darwin's theory has been proven only in one sense: There is little question that all species on earth descended from a common ancestor. Overwhelming anatomical, genetic, and fossil evidence exists for that claim. But the crucial question remains: How did it happen? Darwin's proposed mechanism -- random mutation and natural selection -- has been accepted largely as a matter of faith and deduction or, at best, circumstantial evidence. Only now, thanks to genetics, does science allow us to seek direct evidence. The genomes of many organisms have been sequenced, and the machinery of the cell has been analyzed in great detail. The evolutionary responses of microorganisms to antibiotics and humans to parasitic infections have been traced over tens of thousands of generations.

As a result, for the first time in history Darwin's theory can be rigorously evaluated. The results are shocking. Although it can explain marginal changes in evolutionary history, random mutation and natural selection explain very little of the basic machinery of life. The "edge" of evolution, a line that defines the border between random and nonrandom mutation, lies very far from where Darwin pointed. Behe argues convincingly that most of the mutations that have defined the history of life on earth have been nonrandom.

Although it will be controversial and stunning, this finding actually fits a general pattern discovered by other branches of science in recent decades: The universe as a whole was fine-tuned for life. From physics to cosmology to chemistry to biology, life on earth stands revealed as depending upon an endless series of unlikely events. The clear conclusion: The universe was designed for life.

Produktinformation

  • Format: Kindle Edition
  • Dateigröße: 1006 KB
  • Seitenzahl der Print-Ausgabe: 338 Seiten
  • ISBN-Quelle für Seitenzahl: 0743296222
  • Verlag: Free Press; Auflage: Reprint (5. Juni 2007)
  • Verkauf durch: Amazon Media EU S.à r.l.
  • Sprache: Englisch
  • ASIN: B000RG1OF2
  • Text-to-Speech (Vorlesemodus): Nicht aktiviert
  • X-Ray:
  • Durchschnittliche Kundenbewertung: 3.0 von 5 Sternen  Alle Rezensionen anzeigen (2 Kundenrezensionen)
  • Amazon Bestseller-Rang: #315.680 Bezahlt in Kindle-Shop (Siehe Top 100 Bezahlt in Kindle-Shop)

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5.0 von 5 Sternen Successful search 22. Juli 2008
Format:Gebundene Ausgabe
Behe cleans up with the idea that the Creator God or the Intelligent Designer is a stopgap for the lack of explanation potency. The representatives of a belief in a Creator are often ridiculed for their assumption that they can fill their explanation gap not scientifically only with the idea of a Creator. Therefore, since they are not scientific, they cannot be taken serious. Intelligent Design is nothing but a stopgap, they say. Is this true? Hardly, because they who support "Intelligent Design" or "Creation" do not have the argument of creation from lack of the needed knowledge. Instead they have their argument from a specific knowledge which is the knowledge about intelligent existence. How? Humans are intelligent existence. Humans, who are intelligent beings, plan and create. We know this, so the argument of creation by intelligence is an argument of knowledge, of experience, whereas evolution has no experience on its side. Evolution is the unproved assumption.
But many scientists say that there is no place within science for creation ideas. Creation is for them a constructed argument, based on lack of knowledge. Since science does not yet know how biology really came into being with al its complex systems, they even do not know how natural processes started - evolutionists having nothing more than only theories - it is plain, these Intelligent Design proponents say that a creator or intelligent design must fill the gap- this is plain for those who want to believe this. But those who believe this ,and Behe seems to belong to them, make clear that their decision to belief is based on the knowledge that all we know for sure is that intelligence can be made responsible for intelligently constructed entities. Creation is observable because we see what human beings do.
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1.0 von 5 Sternen Scientific dishonesty 24. März 2011
Von Joda
Format:Gebundene Ausgabe
For simplicity, I'll focus on just one detail of the book, that discredited it for me.

Figure 6.1 on page 115 (the lower panel) shows a rugged fitness landscape taken from Sergey Gavrilets (2004, "Fitness landscapes and the origin of species." Princeton University Press).

The whole book of Gavrilets is written, in order to prove this figure wrong. And it does so successfully. Behe, however, takes this figure as a proper illustration of a fitness landscape, as if it showed the current state of scientific knowledge about fitness landscapes.

Either, Behe took the figure without reading any smallest part of Gavrilets book. That would be negligence. Or he took it on purpose, knowing that it is an old, dated, and no longer valid illustration of fitness landscapes. That would be dishonesty.
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5.0 von 5 Sternen Quantitative Evaluation of the Limits of NeoDarwinian Evolution 9. August 2013
Von D. G. Frank - Veröffentlicht auf Amazon.com
Format:Taschenbuch|Verifizierter Kauf
Behe's sequel to Darwin's Black Box: The Biochemical Challenge to Evolution is very different from its predecessor, which deservedly created a firestorm in the scientific debate concerning origins, and will persist as a landmark in the demise of NeoDarwinian evolution. If you haven't read it, you should do so before you read this important sequel. "Darwin's Black Box" is very readable and accessible to the lay reader. I've used it in tandem with SJ Gould's Full House: The Spread of Excellence from Plato to Darwin to educate bright high-schoolers on the nature of science and scientific progress, and the debate on origins.

In "Darwin's Black Box," Behe makes the compelling case that NeoDarwinian mechanisms are incapable of producing the remarkably complex biological functions and systems we observe, because multiple simultaneous mutations/developments would be required in order to produce systems that could function and then be naturally selected for, while the NeoDarwinian paradigm is limited to progress in gradual, incremental steps. Behe illustrates his case by clearly describing in fascinating detail several irreducibly complex biological systems, most famously the bacterial flagellum.

So, having demonstrated that the NeoDarwinian model is incapable of producing irreducibly complex systems (macro-evolution), Behe addresses the next question: What CAN it do? This is where Behe's biochemistry expertise really shines. He reviews decades of research on the Malaria parasite (one of the longest-studied biological systems), and is able to tease out the quantitative limits of what NeoDarwinism is capable of: The EDGE of (micro) evolution.

Brace yourself for a serious read! Edge is more quantitative and technically oriented than Black Box, but just as important. At the least, you will emerge with a clear understanding of the micro-evolution of Malaria!

Once again, I am impressed by the rigor and intellectual honesty of Behe's work. Congratulations Professor Behe!

******* News Flash: April 2014: Behe's prediction in this book is vindicated concerning chloroquinone resistance requiring TWO genetic mutations. (National Academy of Science PNAS 2014 111 (17) E1759-E1767) *******
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4.0 von 5 Sternen Read it with an open mind. 12. Juni 2007
Von David Marshall - Veröffentlicht auf Amazon.com
Format:Gebundene Ausgabe|Verifizierter Kauf
Just as a massive star bends light, so emotion warps thought when we approach the question of origins. An eminent professor who takes the wrong position on this subject can lose tenure. A less eminent researcher may lose his job. Depite his forty-some peer-reviewed articles and a tenured faculty position, and the careful, measured tone in which he writes, Michael Behe will be called an "ID-iot," his honesty disputed, and anyone who agrees with him dismissed as an ignorant, red-neck hick who can barely muster the cognitive powers of a good high school student.

In such an environment (and if you doubt my appraisal, read some of the reviews below), it takes conscious intent to ignore manipulative appeals to the "argument from sociology" and attend to substance.

For the record, Behe is not an "ID-iot." He is a sharp and thoughtful biologist who doesn't think evolution can work on its own. In this book he argues for common descent, but argues that naturalistic evolution is limitted. He thinks the mechanisms suggested for powering the massive creativity and innovation in nature could not come from mutations alone.

His primary tool for advancing this argument is the evolution of the malaria bug, and of human immune defenses against it, over the past several thousand years. Behe shows that while microbes can and do evolve resistances to medicine, they generally do so by breaking down in some way, as does the human body. Touching briefly on the evolution of e coli and HIV, then on other critters, he makes the case that bugs that evolve rapidly, and through huge communities, demonstrate the limits to naturalistic evolution. The mathematical arguments he brings in to explain and support his more theoretical argument against the power of mutations, which some reviewers take issue with below, are not his main line of persuasion, nor, I admit, do they seem fully persuasive as developed here.

This book is not about Irreducible Complexity (IC). Behe defends the concept, and his examples of it, briefly, but that is not the main line of discussion, critics to the contrary. He's offered a lenghthier defense of IC elsewhere. (While I've read some of his Dover testimony, and some of the summary given in a critic's book, and agree he could have done better at some points, I think carefully considered written articles provide a better forum for ideas than a courtroom drama. As someone who has been known to stutter himself in interviews, I'm not inclined to judge a person's intelligence or argument on how well he holds up against hours of verbal examination by a well-prepared and clever attorney. In Debating Design, he seems to me to do well vs. Kenneth Miller and his famous Type III Secretory System.) But here Behe comes at the question from below, rather from above, looking at the actual known history of recent evolution among well-studied microorganisms. The book is, therefore, a good compliment to Darwin's Black Box.

Read it, and the discussion that will follow (both sides), and make up your own mind. Don't let the raw emotions so in evidence sway you. Behe is right or he is wrong, but he is not a fool. For me, the primary issue remains the frequency and character of beneficial and creative mutations. Looking into the question a bit myself recently, I found a pattern very like what Behe describes. Ironically, it seems to me the best argument against the position Behe stakes out here that I have seen so far is theological. Why would God create the malaria bug? I am still not satisfied that anyone really has the history of life pegged.
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5.0 von 5 Sternen An Important Work 13. Juli 2007
Von The Professor - Veröffentlicht auf Amazon.com
Format:Gebundene Ausgabe
After reading the many negative reviews of this book, I decided to read the book from cover to cover. I conclude that the negative reviews do not reflect the total contents of the book. Much of the material in this book is a review of the literature, which almost none of the critics found fault with. One can quibble with Behe's statistics, most of which he relied on those computed by others, but I have concluded that his main point is valid. I and others would find it very helpful if those who disagree with Behe's results to do their own calculations or refer us to the relevant literature. I have done similar calculations, only with mammals, and have concluded that combining mutational probability and the number of mammal life forms that have existed historically paints a far worse picture than Behe documents for bacteria. The number of uncorrected mutations compared with the number of mammals does not provide much hope that Darwinian mechanisms alone could provide the raw material to evolve mammals from their theoretical common ancestor. There are far to few mammals and far too few uncorrected mutations, most all of which, as has been well documented, are detrimental or, worse yet, near neutral. Many if not most mammals have historically, and today, existed in relatively small numbers. Ecologists have estimated how many Pandas, bears, big cats, and other mammals have ever existed, and the numbers are tiny compared to bacteria. The most successful mammals are the rodents and even their number is tiny compared to bacteria. I also found that many of the critical reviews of this book were just plain wrong. One of many examples is the claim that Behe "quickly" dismissed "the Red Queen hypothesis as a 'silly statement' ....ignoring the existence of a substantial body of supporting scientific literature" is irresponsible. Professor Behe is not calling the Red Queen hypothesis silly, but the statement in Louis Carroll's Alice's Adventures in Wonderland and Through the Looking Glass. Behe then spends much time discussing why he concluded the Red Queen hypothesis may not be correct.
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4.0 von 5 Sternen The edge of evolution 3. Juli 2013
Von James Baker - Veröffentlicht auf Amazon.com
Format:Kindle Edition|Verifizierter Kauf
Great read for the intelligent ,open-minded student of the origin of life. It should be required reading for all college science students.
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4.0 von 5 Sternen deep. 10. Mai 2013
Von Kevin from Texas - Veröffentlicht auf Amazon.com
Verifizierter Kauf
This book was sometimes hard to follow, but Behe does a good job of explaining the implications of the science so most people can understand it. Evolution has its limits. There isn't enough time since life appeared on this planet to have allowed any life form to have evolved into what we have today. Behe does a great job of showing the limits of evolution.
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