Author(s): Guy P. Harrison
This primer on essential scientific literacy gives readers the basics to understand themselves and the world around them, plus a glimpse of how much more science has to offer.
Science tells us a good deal about who we are, where we come from, the nature of the universe, how our brains work, and much, much more. Unfortunately, most people are largely unaware of this treasure trove of information. As a result, we are more prone to do things like aim nuclear weapons at each other, inflate the meaning of cultural differences, lay waste to the land, poison and deplete the oceans, fill the sky with carbon, and generally make poor judgments that cause needless trouble.
This book seeks to remedy this situation by providing scientific answers to the most basic yet important questions about existence. Following the standard six-question list used by journalists researching a news story, critical-thinking advocate Guy P. Harrison turns to science to answer the who, what, why, when, where and how of life on Earth.
How old is our planet? Where did it come from and where is it located in the universe? What is everything made of? When did life begin? Who are we as a species and what connections do we share with other life forms? Why is human culture continuously plagued by war, disease, and crime? Harrison not only offers science's best current answers to these crucial questions but shows how all of this information fits together. Going well beyond the simplistic factoids readily available on any smartphone, he reveals the wider implications and deeper meanings inherent in the scientific worldview.
Both entertaining and informative, this exciting tour of the cosmos and human nature will leave readers with an accurate, up-to-date view of realities small and large, near and far.