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The Canon

Natalie Angier

In The Canon: The Beautiful Basics of Science, Natalie Angier reminds us that every cultured person should know a few big things about science, and this book – wonderfully bright and engaging – tells you what they are.

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Unless we are brilliant at science in our teenage years, many of us put off ‘childish things’ – science museums, palaeontology – in favour of museums, art galleries and concert halls. A cultured person, Natalie Angier argues, should know about the classic ideas of physics and biology as well as the classic works of Beethoven and Picasso. Drawing on conversations with many of the world’s leading scientists, Angier takes us on a vivid, good-humoured and informative tour of this neglected canon. An entertaining guide to scientific literacy – from stem-cell research to bird flu and global warming – that explains the machinery of this place we call home.