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Roundtable Review of Evolutionary History by Edmund Russell (book profile)

Hamblin, Jacob D., ed., Roundtable Review of Evolutionary History: Uniting History and Biology to Understand Life on Earth by Edmund Russell. H-Environment Roundtable Reviews 2, no. 3 (May 2012),
www.h‐net.org/~environ/roundtables/env‐roundtable‐2‐3.pdf.

Edmund Russell adopts a view of history that draws unflinchingly upon the lessons of evolutionary biology and employs the notion of the coevolution of plants, animals, and microorganisms to explain the causes and consequences of a broad range of events. These include the activities of daily life, such as picking up dog feces and using hand sanitizer, to episodes of enormous historical importance, such as the natural causes of the Industrial Revolution. Throughout his book, Russell wants to convince us that evolution is everywhere, happening all the time, and that humans have played an enormous role—conscious or not—in shaping evolutionary processes. He also hopes to encourage scholars to incorporate evolution into their own historical work.

(Text adapted from Jacob D. Hamblin's introduction to the Roundtable Review.)

H-Environment's Roundtable Book Reviews provide multiple perspectives on books and allow the authors the opportunity to respond. This unique dialogue can be a valuable insight into recent scholarship.

Copyright © 2012 H-Net: Humanities and Social Sciences Online. H-Net permits the redistribution and reprinting of this work for nonprofit, educational purposes, with full and accurate attribution to the author, web location, date of publication, H-Environment, and H-Net: Humanities & Social Sciences Online.

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