Evolving Ourselves

Pages: 384
Imprint: Oneworld

Evolving Ourselves

How Unnatural Selection is Changing Life on Earth

Juan Enriquez, Steve Gullans

The spellbinding story of how we have overtaken nature to become the primary drivers of evolution on planet Earth

Paperback
9781780748412 (5 Nov 2015)
RRP £12.99

The Book

Why are rates of conditions like autism, asthma, obesity and allergies exploding at an unprecedented pace? Why are humans living longer, getting smarter and having far fewer children? If Darwin were alive today, how would he explain this new world? Could our children eventually become a different species - or several?

In Evolving Ourselves, futurist Juan Enriquez and scientist Steve Gullans take us on a sweeping tour of how humans are changing the course of evolution - sometimes intentionally, sometimes not. It is a chronicle of where our remarkable new capabilities for altering our bodies, other living creatures, and our environment are taking us in the near term, and introduces the possibility that we might cause our own extinction in the long run.

Additional Information

Pages 384
Imprint Oneworld

About the Author

Juan Enriquez and Steve Gullans are co-founders of Excel Venture Management, which builds start-ups in synthetic biology, big data, and new genetic technologies. Enriquez is a bestselling author and a global authority on the economic and political impacts of the life sciences. Gullans was a professor at Harvard Medical School for eighteen years, applying breakthrough technologies to diseases such as cancer, Parkinson's and Alzheimer's. They both live in Boston.

Reviews

'Enthralling...fascinating'.

- BBC Focus

'Fascinating'.

- Sunday Times

"A scintillating, witty, and sometimes scary account of how rapidly changing technologies are altering human evolution in consequential ways.”

- Daniel E. Lieberman, Edwin M. Lerner II Professor of Biological Sciences, Harvard University

"Provokes terror and inspiration in equal measure. Read this book and you will never think the same way about evolution ever again.”

- Paul Saffo, technology forecaster

"Evolution itself is evolving, human beings are the cause, and we all better wake up and do this more consciously before we domesticate ourselves into extinction.”

- Douglas Rushkoff, author of Present Shock

"For anyone with an interest in understanding the complexity that defines us as human beings, there is plenty to absorb in the cleverly woven pages of Evolving Ourselves. Written in an engaging and often entertaining style, the book pinpoints the unique situation in which Homo sapiens find themselves: deciding what we become next.”

- Dr. Louise Leakey, Turkana Basin Institute

"How far should we go in our ability to control every aspect of the world we live in, including our own bodies? Evolving Ourselves is a fascinating investigation of the global questions and microscopic details that will decide the fate of the human race.”

- Garry Kasparov, former world chess champion

"How big dare we dream? This intriguing, optimistic, and exhilarating book takes us into the laboratories of today's highly innovative molecular biology to explore the possible futures of humankind. If he were alive today, Darwin would be delighted and astonished by the way his ideas have inspired such creative modern research.”

- Janet Browne, author of Charles Darwin: A Biography; Aramont Professor of the History of Science, Harvard University

"We are going from evolution by natural selection to evolution by human design. The game has changed, and this book provides the new rules of engagement.”

- Peter H. Diamandis, chairman/CEO, XPRIZE; author of Abundance

"This book will be a long-lived classic; it is what Darwin would write if he were alive today. Few yet comprehend the awe-inspiring nature of synthetic biology and its implications for life on the planet going forward.”

- Jay Walker, curator of TEDMED

"Juan Enriquez and Steve Gullans convincingly argue that Darwin's driving force of natural selection no longer holds true in a world where little remains natural and free of the hand of man. Their book raises important questions that we all should consider deeply as individuals, as nations, and as a global community as we venture forth into this next phase of evolution.”

- Donald Ingber, M.D.,Ph.D., Founding Director, Wyss Institute for Biologically Inspired Engineering at Harvard University

"Rich in the fascinating details... Enriquez and Gullans take us down a path of observations and logic that leads to either your grandest hopes or darkest nightmares. Fasten your seat-belts, this rocket is about to take off.”

- Martin Blaser, author of Missing Microbes

"Enriquez and Gullans take off all the blinders and explore the myriad, astounding ways we humans are rapidly influencing and shaping, both intentionally and not, our future selves.”

- Linda Avey, co-founder 23andMe

"A provocative and sobering vision... Essential reading for anyone who retains hope that humanity, through shear application of ingenuity, will persevere, survive, and surmount the inestimable challenges that lie ahead.”

- George Daley, MD, PhD, Professor, Harvard Medical School

"Timely and exceptionally rich, this book is guaranteed to stimulate reflection on what the new biology means for our species.”

- DR. Erling Norrby, Former Permanent Secretary of the Royal Swedish Academy of Sciences

"Juan Enriquez and Steve Gullans brilliantly describe a future of extreme possibility and extreme responsibility. Thinking deeply about the implications of their work improves our chances of creating a desirable version of that future.”

- Tim Brown, CEO of IDEO, and author of Change by Design

"In a rapidly changing world, considerations of human evolution are rarely taken into account as a critical factor that shapes the immediate future. but Enriquez and Gullans will convince you otherwise. They will make you rethink what constitutes a victory (antibiotics! air travel!) over our natural biological constraints and its unintended consequences.”

- Hidde Ploegh, Professor of Biology, MIT and member of the Whitehead Institute for Biomedical Research