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Charles Darwin: The Concise Story of an Extraordinary Man by [Tim M. Berra]

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Charles Darwin: The Concise Story of an Extraordinary Man Kindle Edition

4.6 out of 5 stars 26 ratings

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Editorial Reviews

About the Author

Tim M. Berra is professor emeritus of evolution, ecology, and organismal biology at the Ohio State University and a three-time Fulbright grant recipient. He is the author of several books, including Evolution and the Myth of Creationism.

--This text refers to an alternate kindle_edition edition.


"The ensemble of text and illustrations will render an indelible image of Darwin for those beginning to study him, and evolution, while a brief bibliography points the way to further exploration."


"This succinct biography spans Darwin's life in 15 brief chapters and reads like a museum guide, hitting the high points in an easily assimilated style. The copious illustrations, though, including reproductions of period paintings, title page facsimiles, and many of the author's own photographs, are worth poring over and may hold readers' attention longer than it takes to peruse the text. Patrons who want a quick, no-frills but still authoritative read on Darwin's life couldn't find a better source."

(Library Journal)

"A splendid overview derived from a series of lectures, and beautifully illustrated, with a detailed publishing history of all of Darwin's works."

(Nicholas Basbanes

"Charles Darwin: The Concise Story of an Extraordinary Man is the best brief biography on the market."

(Northern Territory News)

"Berra moves quickly through the life, yet finds time to include telling details, as well as sketches of appealing secondary characters."

(David Lumsden Australian Book Review)

"Berra, a retired professor of evolution who gives popular lectures on Darwin, writes leanly and to the point, but still produces a vivid and detailed portrait."

(Scott LaFee San Diego Union-Tribune)

"This work will be useful for introductory students and the general public... Recommended. All undergraduate and public libraries."


"This jewel box of a book offers an imminently readable tour of the great man. Every spread includes illustrations with fascinating captions."

(Jeffrey Cyphers Wright Brooklyn Rail)

"Berra has done masterful work, providing a lively and succinct account of Darwin's life that will provide an excellent introduction for the new reader who is interested in Darwin as well as a helpful review for knowledgeable Darwin enthusiasts!"

(Charles F. Urbanowicz Reports of the National Center for Science Education)

"There can be no doubt that this book will be very warmly received by Darwin enthusiasts because it is a passionate, well-informed, entertaining and colourful introduction to his life and achievements."

(Marta Cunat Romero European Review of History) --This text refers to an alternate kindle_edition edition.

Product details

  • ASIN ‏ : ‎ B0030T2ACE
  • Publisher ‏ : ‎ Johns Hopkins University Press; Illustrated edition (December 1, 2008)
  • Publication date ‏ : ‎ December 1, 2008
  • Language ‏ : ‎ English
  • File size ‏ : ‎ 4539 KB
  • Text-to-Speech ‏ : ‎ Enabled
  • Enhanced typesetting ‏ : ‎ Not Enabled
  • X-Ray ‏ : ‎ Not Enabled
  • Word Wise ‏ : ‎ Enabled
  • Sticky notes ‏ : ‎ Not Enabled
  • Print length ‏ : ‎ 157 pages
  • Customer Reviews:
    4.6 out of 5 stars 26 ratings

About the author

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Dr. Tim M. Berra is Academy Professor and Professor Emeritus of Evolution, Ecology and Organismal Biology at The Ohio State University. He received the Ph.D. in Biology from Tulane University in 1969. He is a three-time recipient of Fulbright Fellowships to Australia in 1969,1979, and 2009. He taught at the University of Papua New Guinea before joining the faculty of OSU in 1972. Over the last 50 years he has spent over 11 years doing fieldwork in Australia.

He is the author of over 85 scientific papers and 9 books including Evolution and the Myth of Creationism published by Stanford University Press in 1990. His book A Natural History of Australia (Academic Press, 1998) features 200 of his color photographs, 220 line drawings and maps, and over 500 references. Freshwater Fish Distribution featuring 169 maps, 324 fish drawings and 1,700 references was published by University of Chicago Press in 2007. Charles Darwin: The Concise Story of an Extraordinary Man, was published by Johns Hopkins University Press in 2009 and features 60 b/w illustrations and 16 color plates. Its sequel, Darwin & His Children: His Other Legacy, was published by Oxford University Press in 2013. It describes the lives of each of Darwin's 10 children with first cousin Emma Wedgwood from their birth to death. Berra's latest book is Bourbon: What the Educated Drinker Should Know. This lavishly ilustrated book was published by Accalim Books in 2019 and defines bourbon and its history and describes how it is made.

In 1992 Berra was visiting professor at the University of Concepcion in Chile, and in 1996 he was visiting professor at the University of Otago in New Zealand. He took early retirement from The Ohio State University in July 1995 to devote full time to research and writing.

Dr. Berra is the former editor of The Ohio Journal of Science and was a member of the Board of Trustees of the Columbus Zoo and Aquarium where he also served on the Conservation and Collection Management Committee. He was also the ichthyological book review editor of Copeia, the journal of the American Society of Ichthyologists and Herpetologists. He resigned these positions at the end of 2000 to pursue fieldwork on the life history of the nurseryfish in northern Australia supported by the National Geographic Society and the Columbus Zoo in 2001. He has spent eight field seasons over the past 16 years in the Northern Territory since then.

Berra is a member of the Board of Governors of the American Society of Ichthyologists and Herpetologists and Research Associate at the Museum and Art Gallery of the Northern Territory in Darwin, Australia where he spent most of 2001 working on nurseryfish. He returned to Darwin in 2003, 2004, and 2005 to continue his nurseryfish research. He was back in Darwin to keynote the bicentennial celebrations of Charles Darwin's birthday at Charles Darwin University in Sept. 2009. He is University Professorial Fellow at Charles Darwin University and a Fellow of the Linnean Society. Dr. Berra's paper in BioScience (May 2010) on inbreeding in the Darwin/Wedgwood families attracted international media attention including a story in the NY Times and NPR interview. He resumed field work in the Australian tropics in 2011, 2014, and 2016.

Preserved scientific specimens collected by Prof. Berra are housed at the National Museum of Natural History (Smithsonian Institution) in Washington D. C. and were the subject of an extensive article in the Columbus Dispatch 27 September 2009. In December 2014 The Ohio State University awarded Dr. Berra the title of Academy Professor in recognition of his on-going research after achieving emeritus status. The Australian-American Fulbright Commission profiled Berra's career in their flagship magazine, Minds and Hearts, 1 March 2017, p 12-15.

Berra is an Executive Bourbon Steward and a member of the Stave and Thief Society, a bourbon certification program of the Kentucky Distiller's Association.

Customer reviews

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4.6 out of 5
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