Tamed, by Alice Roberts: #BookReview.

368 pages
Evolutionary Psychology, Philosophy of Physics

Subtitled ‘Ten Species the Changed Our World’, this book is a tremendous work of scholarship, intelligence, insight, and sheer common sense. Professor Roberts, the history and science buff often seen leading BBC TV documentaries, has pressed into service all her wide knowledge into describing how ten of the crops and animals we rely on came into our service.
She examines this process for Dogs, Wheat, Cattle, Maize, Potatoes, Chickens, Rice, Horses, Apples, and Humans. With her usual facility for presenting complex issues in simple terms, she explains the relationships of humanity with these important, life-sustaining ingredients. She examines our joint history, the relationships between wild and domesticated versions, the way in which such items became so vital to us in our quest to survive, and the way in which modern genetics studies are modifying and increasing our knowledge and understanding of these vital resources and our interaction with them.
More importantly in this crisis-threatened world we have created for ourselves and other species, she also sets out some ideas and guidelines about how best we might try to resolve some of the major issues now facing us. She writes in a way accessible to most, using imaginative scenarios to posit possible ways in which we first came to change our natural world and why.
At the end of the book we find the references and an index that comprise around 11% of the digital version, such has been the depth and breadth of her research.
This book is an important contribution to the broadening discussion now growing in intensity as more people, politicians, and even industries finally recognise the potential consequences of our overwhelming responsibility for the fast-approaching climate and species emergencies.
I urge everyone who wants to fully understand the real situation now facing the world and especially our species to read this astounding piece of crucial work.


[Any review is a personal opinion. No reviewer can represent the view of anyone else. The best we can manage is an honest reaction to any given book.]

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