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Ecology and Evolution - Selected Information Resources: Selected Classic Books

Selected Classic Books

Origin of Species by Means of Natural Selection by Charles Darwin, c1859. An influential and controversial science book, written by a legendary naturalist/evolutionist/geologist who was mostly unemployed for his entire life. Many editions and a concordance to this work have been published. 1874 location circulating copy 1912 location circulating copy 1911 location Also online in PDF at Darwin Online

Synopsis and Classification of Living Organisms by Sybil P. Parker, c1982. A classic reference work down to the family level of living organisms. location

Five Kingdoms: an illustrated guide to the phyla of life on earth by Lynn Margulis, c1982. An emerging classic on classification. 3rd edition in 1998 and in 2009 this author published [current title] Kingdoms & Domains: an illustrated guide to the phyla of life on Earth 4th ed. c1998 location c2009 location

Animal Ecology by Charles S. Elton, c1927. Considered one of the first textbooks on the subject. For a time, Elton was an assistant to Julian Huxley (grandson of Thomas Huxley), studying animal life while on an Oxford University expedition in 1921. An edition with new introductory material was published in 2001. location 

Concepts of Ecology by Edward John Kormondy, c1969. An often-read book written by a biology educator, now retired, whose books began to appear in the 1960s and who later became a university chancellor. location 1 location 2

Systema Naturae (1735) by Carolus Linnaeus. Linnaeus' key work, Systema Naturae is considered by some to be the bible of natural history, covering animals, plants, and minerals. Its 10th edition no longer treated minerals. Marx Library facsimile of 1st volume of 10th ed. c1956 location 

Plant Anatomy by Katherine Esau, c1953. This classic text is said to have had a worldwide impact on the field. A 2nd edition was published in 1965. Russian-born Esau came to the U.S. by way of Germany and subsequently worked, was educated, and taught as a professor in the U.S. c1953 location 

Manual of the Botany of the Northern United States by Asa Gray, c1848. Useful for descriptions, occurrences, some drawings, or some notes on names, the Manual of Botany came out in 8 editions. Five editions of this work were published during Gray's life. location 

Ecology by Robert E. Ricklefs, c1973. A well-used textbook. location 3rd edition was published in 1990. Treats ecosystems, evolutionary ecology and social behavior, population biology and habitats. c1990 location  

Animal Species and Evolution by Ernst Mayr, c1963. This 1963 book has been cited according to Thomson's Web of Science database in over 3400 different publications since its publication. The author's essay, commenting on his work having been designated a citation classic by Thomson , appears in Contemporary Classics in Plant, Animal, and Environmental Sciences, ISI Press, c1986 location  His 2001 What Evolution Is is said to be derived from a number of his earlier works and geared toward a more general audience. (see Science Jan 4, 2002) location 

Origins of Life: from the birth of life to the origin of language by John Maynard Smith and Eors Szathmary, c1999 location

Walker's Mammals of the World by Ernest P. Walker, c1975. A reference classic featuring accounts and a photo of most living genera of mammals. From common to rare, a comprehensive source. The 6th edition appeared in 1999. Most accounts feature a black-and-white species photo. A world distribution table by genus is also provided. c1999 location 


Science Research Support Librarian - Life Sciences

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Rachel Sperling
Marx Science and Social Science Library