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A Brief History of Everyone Who Ever Lived : The Stories in Our Genes

A Brief History of Everyone Who Ever Lived : The Stories in Our Genes

Author: Adam Rutherford
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This is a story about you. It is the history of who you are and how you came to be. It is unique to you, as it is to each of the 100 billion modern humans who have ever drawn breath. But it is also our collective story, because in every one of our genomes we each carry the history of our species - births, deaths, disease, war, famine, migration and a lot of sex. Since scientists first read the human genome in 2001 it has been subject to all sorts of claims, counterclaims and myths. In fact, as Adam Rutherford explains, our genomes should be read not as instruction manuals, but as epic poems. DNA determines far less than we have been led to believe about us as individuals, but vastly more about us as a species. In this captivating journey through the expanding landscape of genetics, Adam Rutherford reveals what our genes now tell us about history, and what history tells us about our genes. From Neanderthals to murder, from redheads to race, dead kings to plague, evolution to epigenetics, this is a demystifying and illuminating new portrait of who we are and how we came to be.


This book is a captivating delight. With witty, authoritative, and profound prose, Adam Rutherford tackles the biggest of issues - where we came from, and what makes us who we are. He does more than any author to cut through the confusion around genetics, and to reveal what modern genetics has to say about our identity, history, and future -- Ed Yong Rutherford takes off on an extraordinary adventure, following the wandering trail of DNA across the globe and back in time. And on the way, he reveals what DNA can - and can't - tell us about ourselves, our history and our deep evolutionary heritage ... From the Neanderthals to the Vikings, from the Queen of Sheba to Richard III, Rutherford goes in search of our ancestors, tracing the genetic clues deep into the past ... Wide-ranging, witty, full of surprises and studded with sparkling insights - Rutherford uncovers the epic history of the human species, written in DNA -- Alice Roberts

Author description

Dr Adam Rutherford is a science writer and broadcaster. He studied genetics at University College London, and during his PhD on the developing eye, he was part of a team that identified the first genetic cause of a form of childhood blindness. He has written and presented many award-winning series and programmes for the BBC, including the flagship weekly Radio 4 programme INSIDE SCIENCE, THE CELL for BBC Four, and PLAYING GOD on the rise of synthetic biology for the leading science strand HORIZON, as well as writing for the science pages of the GUARDIAN. His first book, CREATION, on the origin of life and synthetic biology, was published in 2013 to outstanding reviews and was shortlisted for the Wellcome Trust Prize. | @AdamRutherford

Stock Information

General Fields

  • : 9780297609384
  • : Orion Publishing Co
  • : Weidenfeld & Nicolson
  • : August 2016
  • : 234mm X 153mm
  • : United Kingdom
  • : September 2016
  • : books

Special Fields

  • : Paperback
  • : 320
  • : Adam Rutherford
  • : 599.935