Stephen Jay Gould (1941-2002) was an American professor and educator who proposed the theory of Punctuated Equilibrium in 1972. He was also one of the leading spokespeople for evolutionary theory, and wrote numerous books and articles, including many popular science books.

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Dinosaur Jungle   >   Dinosaur Scientists   >   Stephen Jay Gould

Stephen Jay Gould



Stephen Jay Gould (1941-2002) was an American professor and educator, who, together with Niles Eldredge proposed the theory of Punctuated Equilibrium in 1972>.

According to the theory, evolution takes place in bursts of speciation, separated by long periods of stability.

Gould was also one of the leading spokespeople for evolutionary theory, and wrote numerous books and articles, including many popular science books.


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Rocks of Ages: Science and Religion in the Fullness of Life
By Stephen Jay Gould

Phoenix Books
Audible Audiobook

Rocks of Ages: Science and Religion in the Fullness of Life
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Since the Renaissance people have been plagued by the tense battle between Science and Religion. Internationally renowned best selling author and evolutionist Stephen Jay Gould sheds new light on the dilemma in this provocative, fascinating, and relevant audio. In elaborating and exploring the issue, Gould argues that in order to experience the fullness of being human, we must cultivate a meaningful balance between a life of spirit and a life of rational inquiry; 2 realms, equally essential but utterly different.
The Structure of Evolutionary Theory
By Stephen Jay Gould

Brand: Belknap Press of Harvard University Press
Hardcover (1433 pages)

The Structure of Evolutionary Theory
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The world's most revered and eloquent interpreter of evolutionary ideas offers here a work of explanatory force unprecedented in our time--a landmark publication, both for its historical sweep and for its scientific vision.

With characteristic attention to detail, Stephen Jay Gould first describes the content and discusses the history and origins of the three core commitments of classical Darwinism: that natural selection works on organisms, not genes or species; that it is almost exclusively the mechanism of adaptive evolutionary change; and that these changes are incremental, not drastic. Next, he examines the three critiques that currently challenge this classic Darwinian edifice: that selection operates on multiple levels, from the gene to the group; that evolution proceeds by a variety of mechanisms, not just natural selection; and that causes operating at broader scales, including catastrophes, have figured prominently in the course of evolution.

Then, in a stunning tour de force that will likely stimulate discussion and debate for decades, Gould proposes his own system for integrating these classical commitments and contemporary critiques into a new structure of evolutionary thought.

In 2001 the Library of Congress named Stephen Jay Gould one of America's eighty-three Living Legends--people who embody the "quintessentially American ideal of individual creativity, conviction, dedication, and exuberance." Each of these qualities finds full expression in this peerless work, the likes of which the scientific world has not seen--and may not see again--for well over a century.

The Richness of Life: The Essential Stephen Jay Gould
By Stephen Jay Gould

W.W. Norton & Co
Hardcover (672 pages)

The Richness of Life: The Essential Stephen Jay Gould
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The most entertaining and enlightening writings by the beloved paleontologist, evolutionary biologist, and celebrant of the wonder of life.

"Nature is so wondrously complex and varied that almost anything possible does happen....I rejoice in [its] multifariousness and leave the chimera of certainty to politicians and preachers."―from Ever Since Darwin

Upon his death in 2002, Stephen Jay Gould stood at the pinnacle among observers of the natural world, recognized by Congress as a "living legend." His prodigious legacy―sixteen best-selling and prize-winning books, dozens of scientific papers, an unbroken series of three hundred essays in Natural History―combined to make Gould the most widely read science writer of our time. This indispensable collection of forty-eight pieces from his brilliant oeuvre includes selections from classics such as Ever Since Darwin and The Mismeasure of Man, plus articles and speeches never before published in book form.

This volume, the last that will bear his name, spotlights his elegance, depth, and sheer pleasure in our world―a true celebration of an extraordinary mind. 20 illustrations
The Science and Humanism of Stephen Jay Gould
By Richard York

Brand: Monthly Review Press
Released: 2011-01-01
Paperback (223 pages)

The Science and Humanism of Stephen Jay Gould
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Stephen Jay Gould was not only a leading paleontologist and evolutionary theorist, he was also a humanist with an enduring interest in the history and philosophy of science. The extraordinary range of Gould’s work was underpinned by a richly nuanced and deeply insightful worldview.

Richard York and Brett Clark engage Gould’s science and humanism to illustrate and develop the intellectual power of Gould’s worldview, particularly with regard to the philosophy of science. They demonstrate how the Gouldian perspective sheds light on many of the key debates occurring not only in the natural sciences, but in the social sciences as well. They engage the themes that unified Gould’s work and drove his inquires throughout his intellectual career, such as the nature of history, both natural and social, particularly the profound importance of contingency and the uneven tempo of change. They also assess Gould’s views on structuralism, highlighting the importance of the dialectical interaction of structural forces with everyday demands for function, and his views on the hierarchical ordering of causal forces, with some forces operating at large scales and/or over long spans of time, while others are operating on small scales and/or occur frequently or rapidly.

York and Clark also address Gould’s application of these principals to understanding humanity’s place in nature, including discussions of human evolution, sociobiology, and the role of art in human life. Taken together, this book illuminates Gould’s dynamic understanding of the world and his celebration of both science and humanism.

The Hedgehog, the Fox, and the Magister's Pox: Mending the Gap between Science and the Humanities
By Stephen Jay Gould

Brand: Belknap Press of Harvard University Press
Released: 2011-08-29
Paperback (288 pages)

The Hedgehog, the Fox, and the Magister s Pox: Mending the Gap between Science and the Humanities
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In his final book, Gould offers a surprising and nuanced study of the complex relationship between our two great ways of knowing: science and the humanities, twin realms of knowledge that have been divided against each other for far too long.
The Book of Life: An Illustrated History of the Evolution of Life on Earth
W. W. Norton & Company
Paperback (256 pages)

The Book of Life: An Illustrated History of the Evolution of Life on Earth
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A new edition of the beautifully illustrated depiction of the dramatic story of survival and extinction.

The Book of Life uses an exemplary fusion of art and science to tell the story of life on earth. The text, under the editorship of Stephen Jay Gould, provides a thorough understanding of the latest research and is accompanied by paintings prepared especially for this book. Never before has our planet's evolution been so clearly, so ingeniously explained. History is marked by disaster. The Book of Lifeexplains how mammals, having survived at least one of these disasters―the impact of a massive comet―luckily inherited the earth. Next came the rise of modern humans, who would shape the world as no creature has. As this fascinating history unfolds, gorgeous illustrations allow us to observe climate changes, tectonic plate movement, the spread of plant life, and the death of the dinosaurs. We discover the chains of animal survival, the causes and consequences of adaptation, and finally the environmental impact of human life. Color illustrations throughout.
Punctuated Equilibrium
By Stephen Jay Gould

Brand: Harvard University Press
Released: 2007-04-30
Paperback (408 pages)

Punctuated Equilibrium
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In 1972 Stephen Jay Gould took the scientific world by storm with his paper on punctuated equilibrium, written with Niles Eldredge. Challenging a core assumption of Darwin's theory of evolution, it launched the career of one of the most influential evolutionary biologists of our time--perhaps the best known since Darwin.

Now, thirty-five years later, and five years after his untimely death, Punctuated Equilibrium (originally published as the central chapter of Gould's masterwork, The Structure of Evolutionary Theory) offers his only book-length testament on an idea he fiercely promoted, repeatedly refined, and tirelessly defended. Punctuated equilibrium holds that the great majority of species originate in geological moments (punctuations) and persist in stasis. The idea was hotly debated because it forced biologists to rethink entrenched ideas about evolutionary patterns and processes. But as Gould shows here in his typically exhaustive coverage, the idea has become the foundation of a new view of hierarchical selection and macroevolution.

What emerges strikingly from this book is that punctuated equilibrium represents a much broader paradigm about the nature of change--a worldview that may be judged as a distinctive and important movement within recent intellectual history. Indeed we may now be living within a punctuation, and our awareness of what this means may be the enduring legacy of one of America's best-loved scientists.

The Mismeasure of Man (Revised & Expanded)
By Stephen Jay Gould

W. W. Norton & Company
Paperback (448 pages)

The Mismeasure of Man (Revised & Expanded)
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The definitive refutation to the argument of The Bell Curve.

When published in 1981, The Mismeasure of Man was immediately hailed as a masterwork, the ringing answer to those who would classify people, rank them according to their supposed genetic gifts and limits.

And yet the idea of innate limits―of biology as destiny―dies hard, as witness the attention devoted to The Bell Curve, whose arguments are here so effectively anticipated and thoroughly undermined by Stephen Jay Gould. In this edition Dr. Gould has written a substantial new introduction telling how and why he wrote the book and tracing the subsequent history of the controversy on innateness right through The Bell Curve. Further, he has added five essays on questions of The Bell Curve in particular and on race, racism, and biological determinism in general. These additions strengthen the book's claim to be, as Leo J. Kamin of Princeton University has said, "a major contribution toward deflating pseudo-biological 'explanations' of our present social woes."

Wonderful Life: The Burgess Shale and the Nature of History
By Stephen Jay Gould

Gould, Stephen Jay
Paperback (352 pages)

Wonderful Life: The Burgess Shale and the Nature of History
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"[An] extraordinary book. . . . Mr. Gould is an exceptional combination of scientist and science writer. . . . He is thus exceptionally well placed to tell these stories, and he tells them with fervor and intelligence."―James Gleick, New York Times Book Review

High in the Canadian Rockies is a small limestone quarry formed 530 million years ago called the Burgess Shale. It hold the remains of an ancient sea where dozens of strange creatures lived―a forgotten corner of evolution preserved in awesome detail. In this book Stephen Jay Gould explores what the Burgess Shale tells us about evolution and the nature of history.
Ever Since Darwin: Reflections in Natural History
By Stephen Jay Gould

W. W. Norton & Company
Paperback (288 pages)

Ever Since Darwin: Reflections in Natural History
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More than any other modern scientists, Stephen Jay Gould has opened up to millions the wonders of evolutionary biology. His genius as an essayist lies in his unmatched ability to use his knowledge of the world, including popular culture, to illuminate the realm of science.

Ever Since Darwin, Stephen Jay Gould's first book, has sold more than a quarter of a million copies. Like all succeeding collections by this unique writer, it brings the art of the scientific essay to unparalleled heights.


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