The Gene is the story of one of the most powerful and dangerous ideas in our history, from best-selling, prize-winning author Siddhartha Mukherjee.
Spanning the globe and several centuries, The Gene is the story of the quest to decipher the master code that makes and defines humans, that governs our form and function.
The story of the gene begins in an obscure Augustinian abbey in Moravia in 1856, where a monk stumbles on the idea of a 'unit of heredity'. It intersects with Darwin's theory of evolution and collides with the horrors of Nazi eugenics in the 1940s. The gene transforms postwar biology. It reorganises our understanding of sexuality, temperament, choice and freewill. This is a story driven by human ingenuity and obsessive minds - from Charles Darwin and Gregor Mendel to Francis Crick, James Watson and Rosalind Franklin and the thousands of scientists still working to understand the code of codes.
This is an epic, moving history of a scientific idea coming to life by the author of The Emperor of All Maladies. But woven through The Gene like a red line is also an intimate history - the story of Mukherjee's own family and its recurring pattern of mental illness, reminding us that genetics is vitally relevant to everyday lives. These concerns reverberate even more urgently today as we learn to 'read' and 'write' the human genome - unleashing the potential to change the fates and identities of our children.
Majestic in its ambition and unflinching in its honesty, The Gene gives us a definitive account of the fundamental unit of heredity - and a vision of both humanity's past and its future.
©2016 Siddhartha Mukherjee (P)2016 Random House AudioBooks
I have read many books on genetics and history. Coming from a non biological background I have thoroughly enjoyed this book. It has a wonderful mixture of my two passions on life: history and genetics
This is a truly remarkable volume where the author unpacks for the layperson the history of Genetics. Of equal importance, the current issues concerning genes and their manipulation, right up to the present day, are expounded and explained. I learned a great deal from this fine book.
"Fascinating, exhilarating thought provoking all at the same time"
Very well researched, written and read - at times like a thriller, at times like a mystery and at times like a credible science journal. 20 hours very well spent!!
"Freaks become norms, and norms become extinct."
Monster by monster, evolution advanced”
― Siddhartha Mukherjee, The Gene: An Intimate History
We are a code a language, participants in the same rules of life that all forms life of this earth take part in and we as a species are beginning to to decode it and understand the power within that knowledge.
This book is a historical and personal description of what we have learned to this point, it is also a warning of how we have used this ideas to promote political agendas and prejudices that have developed into some of the most horrible events in human history, it also shows that we are at the very edge of discoveries that will liberate us from some of the worst illnesses that have ruled our lives and our death.
This book is very accessible and so, so interesting it is a shame many will not read it out of fear it would be too technical or too complicated, the truth is it will open a world of ideas and give you a perspective that will enrich your life and your understanding of what is being developed and a way of understanding some of the implications of this developments.
I enjoyed reading this book, and learning more about life itself and how truly amazing it is, this is about one of the most important technologies of our day and it how it influences and touches our most basic needs from gestation to death.
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