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Your Inner Fish: A Journey into the 3.5-Billion-Year History of the Human Body

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3.95 of 5 stars 3.95  ·  rating details  ·  11,871 ratings  ·  893 reviews
Details on a Major New Discovery included in a New AfterwordWhy do we look the way we do? Neil Shubin, the paleontologist and professor of anatomy who co-discovered Tiktaalik, the “fish with hands,” tells the story of our bodies as you've never heard it before. By examining fossils and DNA, he shows us that our hands actually resemble fish fins, our heads are organized lik ...more
ebook, 163 pages
Published January 15th 2008 by Vintage (first published 2008)
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Community Reviews

(showing 1-30 of 3,000)
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Will Byrnes
How are embryos like fossils? How did we come to have the hands, arms, heads, bone structures, ears, eyes and many of the other parts we have? It turns out that homo sap is a very jury-rigged critter, an accumulation of biological compromises and re-purposed parts. One can look at fossils to see how we got from there, waaaay back there, to here, and one can also find, in comparing embryos of different species, evidence of our developmental history. DNA tells tales. Neil Shubin follows both paths ...more
Trevor
This really was a pleasure – another book recommended by Wendy – although what I liked most about it was possibly not the most obvious things about the book. From very early on I was in a bit of a world of my own and had started to wonder what to make of the fact that palaeontologists tend to make such wonderful science writers?

I’ve said it before, but I think Gould is a better writer than Dawkins – and that is a big statement for me, as I tend to prefer an English voice over an American one. I
...more
Fahad
السمكة داخلك: رحلة في تاريخ الجسم البشري

من نيل شوبين أحد أعضاء الفريق الذي اكتشف مستحاثة سمكة التيكتالك - والتي تعتبر حلقة في السلسلة التطورية-، يأتي هذا الكتاب الرائع والذي يناقش فيه المؤلف الكثير من المواضيع بدء من كيف يبحث عن العلماء عن المستحاثات؟ وأين؟ وكيف تطور الدماغ وتطورت العين والأذن، الكتاب رائع جداً في مجاله ويغري بقراءات أوسع.


19/ تراتب المستحاثات في صخور العالم.
21/ كيف يتم تحديد المنطقة التي سيتم البحث فيها عن المستحاثات.
24/ الطريقة المثلى لتصميم بعثة استكشافية.
24/ اكتشفت سمكتنا ال
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Katherine Furman
This book delivered exactly what I wanted: an explanation of evolution from fish (and before really) to man in layman's terms, but not moron layman--well-spoken layman. I had so many 'ah-ha!' moments while reading this book that my head began to spin a little, but in a good way. For instance, when I used to think about evolution the hardest part for me to wrap my mind around was the slow progress of body parts morphing from one form to the next. What this book enlightened me to was that it's not ...more
Nate
There are lots of titles out there in American bookstores that see the need to defend the idea of evolution from the claims of creationism and intelligent design. But this book is not one of them. Shubin assumes that you accept evolution to be a fact about the world and gets on with it. He is a fish paleontologist who teaches anatomy to first year medical students at the University of Chicago. If that sounds strange, it won’t so much after you’ve read his book. Paleontology and comparative anato ...more
Fatema Hassan , bahrain


لطالما كانت صعوبة العلوم تكمن في كونها تحديات لعقلنا في مساق التاريخ البشري ، يجتمع العقل البشري الذي يفوق سائر كائنات رقعة الكرة الأرضية ذكاءًا بآلاته وأدواته التي تتصاعد آليات تطورها مع الزمن ليقوم بإكتشافات محدودة بين الفينة والأخرى ليواجه تحديات علم أعزل فطري هو علم الأحياء ( البيولوجيا) والذي لا زالت الإحاطة بكل تجاويفه و حقائقه نوع من أنواع المستحيل ، يدرس الإنسان علم المتحجرات ( المستحاثات أو الأحافير ) ليتدرج فهمه نحو نوع التطور الذي أطلق جميع الكائنات الحية التي تجتمع فوق الكرة الأرضية
...more
Vince
If you have a semi-extensive science background, you'll probably find this book annoyingly vague. Lots of handwaving, little in the way of explanatory detail.

If you're a fan of well-written scientific prose, you'll definitely be driven around the bend. The author was chosen to write this book because he made a terrific discovery in northern Canada a few years back -- a key missing link between fish and mammals -- not because he can write his way out of a wet paper bag. Each chapter lunges hither
...more
Kapi
Update 12/2009: Shubin and I have just released 40 figures in this book as a deck of PowerPoint slides with the hopes that educators across the country will be able to use them in their lectures on evolution and biology. They're available for free on the Tiktaalik website: http://tiktaalik.uchicago.edu/book-to... Hope they're useful!

Review from 12/2007: Keep an eye out for this book's release in January of 2008. I worked extensively with the author while he was writing it, and was constantly ent
...more
Fahad Alqurain
انه احد افضل الكتب التي قرأتها في حياتي ولو قالوا لي أعطنا خمسة كتب أثروا فيك وغيروا مفاهيمك للحياة لا شك أن هذا الكتاب سيكون أحدهم

رائع يأخذك الى بداية نشأة الانسان ويحللها تحليلاً علمياً بأسلوب ادبي
كتاب لا بد أن تقرأه في حياتك سيغر حياتك ويقلب افكارك ،

إنني اقرا الكتاب وكأني انظر الى النجوم والعودة في الزمن . فقد بدأ ضؤ النجوم رحلته إلينا قبل دهور خلت ، قبل نشؤ العالم بزمن بعيد . إنني أحب أن افكر بأن النظر في الانسان أشبه مايكون بالتحديق في النجوم . إن كنت تعلم كيف تنظر فإن أجسامنا تصبح كبسولة
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Cindy
I really enjoyed this exploration into our human body and how it reveals pieces of our evolutionary ancestors.

You certainly don't need a science degree or much of a biology background at all to follow the steps from gills to ears or larynx. I would have appreciated more detail and a little less hand waving, but that's my inner scientist showing through.

He had a very detailed bibliography, with not just titles he drew on and others to explore, but commentary on why they might be useful. I love a
...more
Carlo
Apr 20, 2012 Carlo rated it 4 of 5 stars  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: Everyone interested in Evolution
Recommended to Carlo by: Trevor
I knew about this book from Trevor's review some time ago. I saw it in the Bibliography of some of Dawkins' books and it that of Why Evolution is True by Jerry A. Coyne which I recently read, and I got interested to read it very soon. It is truly a remarkable work. If not for anything, just because it shows how evolution can be very helpful in making advances in Medicine. Neil Shubin, who is very well versed in Comparative Anatomy, shows how certain parts of our body can only be understood in li ...more
Magila
I threw in the towel with this book about half way through. I found it to be dull, and missing a voice. It feels mostly as if the author is trying to convince his audience that evolution is real. It's written part to the layperson, part to the scientist or student, it's neither a textbook not a successful popular work to me. I love scientific books, and could point folks to a few which I believe were amongst the best that I read in the last year or two, but this book just misses the mark.

I woul
...more
Abu Hasan
رغم أني غير مقتنع يموضوع التطور بالصورة التي يريد الغرب فرضها، إلا أن هذا الكتاب يستحق أكثر من 4 نجوم لأسباب منها لغة المؤلف، وأسلوبه في عرض أفكار الكتاب، ومادة الكتاب نفسها
وما عرضه المؤلف في هذا الكتاب من عجائب تكوين أعضاء الإنسان وخصائصها التشريحية، لا يزيد المؤمن إلا إيمانا بربه ويحكمته وبأنه هو من خلق الإنسان وبقية المخلوقات على هذه الصورة الفريدة، لا الصدفة ولا الإنتخاب الطبيعي ولا الصراع من أجل البقاء، وبأن التطور وما يتعلق به ليسوا سوى حلقة في مسلسل الخلق
فتحي سرور
أنه كتاب العجائب!!!هل فكرت يوما في العلاقة بين الفواق(الزغطة)و يرقات الضفادع؟أو بين الفتاق و أسماك القرش؟؟هل فكرت من قبل في أن السبب في معظم أمراض العصر هو أستخدامنا لأجسامنا بما يخالف ما تطورت لأجله من الباية؟؟هل فكرت في مدى القرابة بينك و بين الذباب و الديدان؟؟.....و أذا كنت طالب طب:فأنت بالتأكيد تسألت مثلي عن السبب وراء الألاعيب التي تمارسها الأعصاب و الأوعية الدموية بمساراتها المعقدة علينا في بداية دراستنا للطب و ال recrurrent larngeal nerve مثال جيد.

عندما درست علم الأجنة للمرة خلال عامي الأ
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Kay
I feel bad not giving this book a higher rating. Heaven knows we can use more books that explain complex scientific material to the general public. Gifted writers such as Jonathan Weiner ( The Beak of the Finch ), David Quammen (The Flight of the Iguana), and Gilbert Waldbauer (Insects through the Seasons) have expanded my own intellectual horizons considerably, simultaneously educating and entertaining. Alas, I can’t in good conscience place Neil Shubin’s book in the same league. It read more l ...more
David
There are plenty of people writing reviews about this book detailing examples of what is covered in the book, but if you are on the fence about reading it, here is what the book offers: a basic overview of phylogenetics (specifically cladistics, which tries to use novel features to determine how species are related to each other), the natural history of several important innovations in the evolution of the body plan we share with other land-based vertebrates (birds, fish, mammals), and insight i ...more
Michael
This is a very important book that not only updated my knowledge on the current state of comparative anatomy in relation to evolutionary biology but also kept me turning the pages in absolute fascination. I almost read it in one sitting because I couldn't bear to put it down. No one who reads this could possibly have any doubts about the relatedness of all of life or the fact that we carry the evolutionary history of more than just humans inside us. I found the writing style less than elegant, b ...more
Lois Bujold
Nov 03, 2012 Lois Bujold rated it 5 of 5 stars  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: everyone
I read this a few years back, but was reminded of it by the inclusion of its author and materials on the PBS DVD "What Darwin Never Knew" (2009), which I caught belatedly tonight. Excellent science writing by the actual practitioner -- highly recommended. Shubin describes his search for the fossil fish that represents the first proto-quadrupeds on land; later, the discovery is backed up and deepened by a directed search for the genes and their mechanisms that made the differences.

Ta, L.
عبدالرحمن عقاب
كتابٌ حديث نسبيًا في نظرية التطوّر. يجمع فيه صاحبه كثيرًا من أوجه التشابه في الدقائق البيولوجية بين الإنسان وغيره من الكائنات كالسمك والذباب والفئران وقناديل البحر وغيرها ... ويبدأ الكاتب كتابه بقصّة اكتشافه وفريقه لسمكة "التيكتاليك" التي تعتبر حلقةً بين السمك والزواحف.
صيغ الكتاب بأسلوبٍ سهل وممتع، كما أنّه ترجم بإبداعٍ يُشكر له المترجم الفاضل "حسين غزلان"، فمن أخطر ما يواجه مثل هذه الكتب في مواضيع علميةٍ كهذه هو صعوبة "الصياغة " و " تعاسة" الترجمة.
وإذا كان الكاتب يُشير في الكتاب إلى ما يحويه
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HBalikov
For those who enjoyed the writings of paleontologist and evolutionary biologist, Steven Jay Gould, here is another master in communicating complex science to the lay person. Neil Shubin has the smarts, the skills, the enthusiasm and the insights to enlighten us on the manner in which we humans are part of the world's amazing collection of life forms past and present.

Gould taught at Harvard and was associated with the American Museum of Natural History. In remarkable parallel construction, Shubin
...more
محمد عطبوش

مقتطفات من الكتاب أشارككم بها:

99% من الكائنات التي عاشت على الأرض انقرضت
وجزء بسيط منها حفظ كمستحثات تحت ظروف مثالية. وجزء صغير من هذه المستحثات تم اكتشافه.

يجب البحث عن المستحثات في أماكن تحتوي صخور من نوع مناسب (رسوبية) بالعمر المناسب ومكشوفة الى السطح (لا يغطيها الكثير من التراب والنبات والبشر) والكثير من الحظ.

سكنت الكائنات في اليابسة قبل حوالي 365 مليون سنة.

قصة أنابيب العمارة ص125.

تجربة جين نوجين ص165.


نشأ التعدد في الخلايا بسبب (سباق التسلح التطوري) لكي تزداد المفترسات حجماً وقدرة على التهام ا
...more
Clif
When I was a kid, I loved to read the non-fiction books of Issac Asimov.

I was fascinated by how things worked, be they natural of something man-made and Asimov wrote to inform the layman like me of the wonders of everything from physics to biology (and even the Bible).

Once I worked as a lowly night janitor in a Bell Telephone office. I couldn't wait for my lunch hour to run to the basement, pull up a chair and dig into what Asimov had to say on the structure of the atom and how electricity worke
...more
Tom Meyer
If Richard Dawkins attacks Creationism with rhetorical broadsides, Shubin does it with a carefully-aimed silenced rifle; less dramatic, but far more effective and humane.

Unless I missed something, I don't think Shubin uses the word "evolution" anywhere in the book. But he presumes Common Descent and -- without the reader having to be consciously aware of this -- causes the reader to presume it as well. He or she has to for the book to make any sense. Indeed, until the final chapter, I don't thin
...more
Al-waleed Kerdie
كتاب جميل يبدأه كاتبه في رحلة إكتشافه لأول مستحاثة بدأت بالإنتقال من حياة الماء إلى البرماء و هي التيكتاليك, ينتقل بنا الكاتب لاحقا في دروس تشريحية عن بعض أجزاء الإنسان و صلتها بالأنواع الأخرى محاولا إيضاح العلاقة بين الإنسان و الأنواع الأخرى في تاريخ شجرة الحياة التطوري و محاولات العلماء الحثيثة في اكتشاف هذه التشريحات و التي نال الكثير منهم جوائز نوبل عن إسهاماتهم العلمية. إننا لا نرتبط فقط بالرئيسيات كما يهيئ للبعض بل نتعداها إلى جميع الأنواع من سمك القرش و قنديل البحر و الديدان و الإسفنج و ا ...more
Nicole
Dr. Shubin's book leans more to the evolutionary connections between organisms. He covers an enormous list of experimental evidence in passing which links the way the genes have been reused over millions, and in a few cases billions, of years in constituting the various body & sensory parts. Change the regulation and combination of genes to get a whole new organism.
From Paracoccus dentrificans to humans via the Poriferans, Cnidarians, & the Chordates.

This is a great book to read with "En
...more
Tuệ Trần
Caution: Chán cực. Nếu bạn chờ đợi một điều gì đó giàu tính khai phá hơn cái tiêu đề, thì đừng đọc.
Keith Davis
Neil Shubin is a paleontologist who spent years teaching anatomy to medical students. His combined background in ancient fossils and human anatomy gives him a unique perspective on the evolution of the human body, both its wonders and its flaws. Shubin's view of the human body is like a car that has been rebuilt many many times to serve different functions. Imagine you started with a small sedan and then expanded it into a big family minivan, then added a racing engine, then attached a plow and ...more
Yiğit Efe
"Bir Volkswagen Kaplumbağa'yı, saatte iki yüz elli km hızla gidecek şekilde donatıp modifiye ettiğinizi varsayalım. 1933'te Adolf Hitler, Dr. Ferdinand Porsche'yi, bir galon benzinle altmış beş km yol kat edecek ve ortalama bir Alman ailesinin güvenle ulaşımını sağlayacak ucuz bir otomobil geliştirmekle görevlendirmişti. Sonuçta Vosvos Kaplumbağa ortaya çıktı. Otomobilin bu geçmişi, yani Hitler'in planı, günümüzde bu Kaplumbağa'da yapabileceğimiz değişiklikleri sınırlı kılar; motorunu ancak bir ...more
Ur Salem
Neil who discovered Tiktaalik does not even draw any attention to the fish, 'bichir', and if it had any possible link with his "discovery" despite the fact that both share major characteristics.

In comparison to the snob, Richard Dawkins, here you have Neil Shubin who does take fossils as a major line of evidence in contrast to the former that regards fossils as just another "bonus" material that we do not need to understand ourselves with! (for more on Dawkins please refer to the following threa
...more
Kitty
This book spoke to my biology background. I was fascinated by the anatomical structures that are similar in humans and other animals. Good information and illustrations without being overly academic.
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  • Our Inner Ape: A Leading Primatologist Explains Why We Are Who We Are
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  • Climbing Mount Improbable
  • The Panda's Thumb: More Reflections in Natural History
  • Written in Stone: Evolution, the Fossil Record, and Our Place in Nature
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The Universe Within: Discovering the Common History of Rocks, Planets, and People Great Transformations in Vertebrate Evolution

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“We were not designed rationally, but are products of a convoluted history.” 13 likes
“In a perfectly designed world —one with no history— we would not have to suffer everything from hemorrhoids to cancer.” 10 likes
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