A Natural History of the Senses

Author: Diane Ackerman

Publisher: Vintage

ISBN: 0307763315

Category: Science

Page: 352

View: 2203

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Diane Ackerman's lusciously written grand tour of the realm of the senses includes conversations with an iceberg in Antarctica and a professional nose in New York, along with dissertations on kisses and tattoos, sadistic cuisine and the music played by the planet Earth. “Delightful . . . gives the reader the richest possible feeling of the worlds the senses take in.” —The New York Times

A Natural History of the Senses

Author: Diane Ackerman

Publisher: Vintage

ISBN: 0679735666

Category: Family & Relationships

Page: 331

View: 854

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A naturalist guides readers through the human senses, discussing the evolution of the kiss, the sadistic cuisine of eighteenth-century England, the chemistry of pain, and the melodies of Earth

A Natural History of Love

Author of the National Bestseller A Natural History of the Senses

Author: Diane Ackerman

Publisher: Vintage

ISBN: 0307763323

Category: Psychology

Page: 384

View: 3729

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The bestselling author of A Natural History of the Senses now explores the allure of adultery, the appeal of aphrodisiacs, and the cult of the kiss. Enchantingly written and stunningly informed, this "audaciously brilliant romp through the world of romantic love" (Washington Post Book World) is the next best thing to love itself. From the Trade Paperback edition.

Cultivating Delight

A Natural History of My Garden

Author: Diane Ackerman

Publisher: Harper Collins

ISBN: 0060505362

Category: Nature

Page: 272

View: 3198

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In the mode of her bestseller A Natural History of the Senses, Diane Ackerman celebrates the sensory pleasures of her garden through the seasons. Whether she is deadheading flowers or glorying in the profusion of roses, offering sugar water to a hummingbird or studying the slug, she welcomes the unexpected drama and extravagance as well as the sanctuary her garden offers. Written in sensuous, lyrical prose, Cultivating Delight is a hymn to nature and to the pleasure we take in it.

Deep Play

Author: Diane Ackerman

Publisher: Vintage

ISBN: 0307763331

Category: Philosophy

Page: 256

View: 7443

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With A Natural History of the Senses, Diane Ackerman let her free-ranging intellect loose on the natural world. Now in Deep Play she tackles the realm of creativity, by exploring one of the most essential aspects of our characters: the abitlity to play. "Deep play" is that more intensified form of play that puts us in a rapturous mood and awakens the most creative, sentient, and joyful aspects of our inner selves. As Ackerman ranges over a panoply of artistic, spiritual, and athletic activities, from spiritual rapture through extreme sports, we gain a greater sense of what it means to be "in the moment" and totally, transcendentally human. Keenly perceived and written with poetic exuberance, Deep Play enlightens us by revealing the manifold ways we can enhance our lives. From the Trade Paperback edition.

A Slender Thread

Rediscovering Hope at the Heart of Crisis

Author: Diane Ackerman

Publisher: Vintage

ISBN: 0307763366

Category: Psychology

Page: 320

View: 1269

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his astonishing book by the prizewinning, bestselling author of A Natural History of the Senses reveals Ackerman's parallel lives as an observer of the wildlife in her garden and as a telephone crisis counselor. "(Ackerman) brings a luminous and illuminating combination of sensuality, science, and speculation to whatever she considers."--San Francisco Examiner. From the Hardcover edition.

Prime Mover

A Natural History of Muscle

Author: Steven Vogel

Publisher: W. W. Norton & Company

ISBN: 9780393324631

Category: Science

Page: 370

View: 3283

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A fascinating introduction to the world of muscle explores the role this important tissue plays in a host of important tasks, from maintaining a heartbeat to hunting prey. Reprint.

Bird Sense

What It's Like to Be a Bird

Author: Tim Birkhead

Publisher: Bloomsbury Publishing USA

ISBN: 0802779689

Category: Nature

Page: 288

View: 3427

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What is it like to be a swift, flying at over one hundred kilometres an hour? Or a kiwi, plodding flightlessly among the humid undergrowth in the pitch dark of a New Zealand night? And what is going on inside the head of a nightingale as it sings, and how does its brain improvise? Bird Sense addresses questions like these and many more, by describing the senses of birds that enable them to interpret their environment and to interact with each other. Our affinity for birds is often said to be the result of shared senses--vision and hearing--but how exactly do their senses compare with our own? And what about a bird's sense of taste, or smell, or touch, or the ability to detect the earth's magnetic field? Or the extraordinary ability of desert birds to detect rain hundreds of kilometres away--how do they do it? Bird Sense is based on a conviction that we have consistently underestimated what goes on in a bird's head. Our understanding of bird behaviour is simultaneously informed and constrained by the way we watch and study them. By drawing attention to the way these frameworks both facilitate and inhibit discovery, Birkhead identifies ways we can escape from them to explore new horizons in bird behaviour. There has never been a popular book about the senses of birds. No one has previously looked at how birds interpret the world or the way the behaviour of birds is shaped by all their senses. A lifetime spent studying birds has provided Tim Birkhead with a wealth of observation and a unique understanding of birds and their behaviour that is firmly grounded in science.

The Ephemeral History of Perfume

Scent and Sense in Early Modern England

Author: Holly Dugan

Publisher: JHU Press

ISBN: 1421404222

Category: Literary Criticism

Page: 280

View: 631

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Dugan’s inspired analysis of a wide range of underexplored sources makes available to scholars a remarkable wealth of information on the topic.

The Sensational Past: How the Enlightenment Changed the Way We Use Our Senses

Author: Carolyn Purnell

Publisher: W. W. Norton & Company

ISBN: 0393249360

Category: History

Page: 288

View: 7250

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Sight, smell, hearing, taste, and touch—as they were celebrated during the Enlightenment and as they are perceived today. Blindfolding children from birth? Playing a piano made of live cats? Using tobacco to cure drowning? Wearing “flea”-colored clothes? These actions may seem odd to us, but in the eighteenth century, they made perfect sense. As often as we use our senses, we rarely stop to think about their place in history. But perception is not dependent on the body alone. Carolyn Purnell persuasively shows that, while our bodies may not change dramatically, the way we think about the senses and put them to use has been rather different over the ages. Journeying through the past three hundred years, Purnell explores how people used their senses in ways that might shock us now. And perhaps more surprisingly, she shows how many of our own ways of life are a legacy of this earlier time. The Sensational Past focuses on the ways in which small, peculiar, and seemingly unimportant facts open up new ways of thinking about the past. You will explore the sensory worlds of the Enlightenment, learning how people in the past used their senses, understood their bodies, and experienced the rapidly shifting world around them. In this smart and witty work, Purnell reminds us of the value of daily life and the power of the smallest aspects of existence using culinary history, fashion, medicine, music, and many other aspects of Enlightenment life.

The Human Age: The World Shaped By Us

Author: Diane Ackerman

Publisher: W. W. Norton & Company

ISBN: 0393245845

Category: Science

Page: 352

View: 4959

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Winner of the 2015 National Outdoor Book Award for Natural History Literature and the 2015 PEN New England Henry David Thoreau Prize. A dazzling, inspiring tour through the ways that humans are working with nature to try to save the planet. Ackerman is justly celebrated for her unique insight into the natural world and our place in it. In this landmark book, she confronts the unprecedented reality that one prodigiously intelligent and meddlesome creature, Homo sapiens, is now the dominant force shaping the future of planet Earth. Humans have "subdued 75 percent of the land surface, concocted a wizardry of industrial and medical marvels, strung lights all across the darkness." We tinker with nature at every opportunity; we garden the planet with our preferred species of plants and animals, many of them invasive; and we have even altered the climate, threatening our own extinction. Yet we reckon with our own destructive capabilities in extraordinary acts of hope-filled creativity: we collect the DNA of vanishing species in a "frozen ark," equip orangutans with iPads, and create wearable technologies and synthetic species that might one day outsmart us. With her distinctive gift for making scientific discovery intelligible to the layperson, Ackerman takes us on an exhilarating journey through our new reality, introducing us to many of the people and ideas now creating—perhaps saving—our future and that of our fellow creatures. A beguiling, optimistic engagement with the changes affecting every part of our lives, The Human Age is a wise and beautiful book that will astound, delight, and inform intelligent life for a long time to come.

Tasty

The Art and Science of What We Eat

Author: John McQuaid

Publisher: Simon and Schuster

ISBN: 1451685009

Category: Psychology

Page: 304

View: 6742

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Draws on reports from kitchens, markets, farms, and laboratories to trace historical experiences of flavor while making predictions on how the sense of taste will evolve in coming decades.

Our Senses

An Immersive Experience

Author: Rob DeSalle

Publisher: Yale University Press

ISBN: 0300230192

Category: Psychology

Page: 312

View: 2599

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A lively and unconventional exploration of our senses, how they work, what is revealed when they don't, and how they connect us to the world Over the past decade neuroscience has uncovered a wealth of new information about our senses and how they serve as our gateway to the world. This splendidly accessible book explores the most intriguing findings of this research. With infectious enthusiasm, Rob DeSalle illuminates not only how we see, hear, smell, touch, taste, maintain balance, feel pain, and rely on other less familiar senses, but also how these senses shape our perception of the world aesthetically, artistically, and musically. DeSalle first examines the question of how perception and consciousness are formed in the brain, setting human senses in an evolutionary context. He then investigates such varied themes as supersenses and diminished senses, synesthesia and other cross-sensory phenomena, hemispheric specialization, diseases, anomalies induced by brain injuries, and hallucinations. Focusing on what is revealed about our senses through the extraordinary, he provides unparalleled insights into the unique wonders of the human brain.

Cooked

A Natural History of Transformation

Author: Michael Pollan

Publisher: Penguin

ISBN: 0143125338

Category: Cooking

Page: 468

View: 9933

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The author recounts the story of his culinary education and the roles of the four classical elements of fire, water, air and earth in transforming natural ingredients into delicious meals and drinks, in an account that traces his efforts to master classic recipes using one of the four elements. Reprint.

Skin

A Natural History

Author: Nina G. Jablonski

Publisher: Univ of California Press

ISBN: 0520242815

Category: Health & Fitness

Page: 266

View: 6648

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The rich cultural canvas of the skin is placed within its broader biological context in a complete guidebook to the pliable covering that makes humans who they are.

Animal Sense

Author: Diane Ackerman,Peter Sís

Publisher: Knopf Books for Young Readers

ISBN: 9780375923845

Category: Juvenile Nonfiction

Page: 48

View: 2834

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From the Hardcover edition.

The Spell of the Sensuous

Perception and Language in a More-Than-Human World

Author: David Abram

Publisher: Vintage

ISBN: 0307830551

Category: Philosophy

Page: 352

View: 6018

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Winner of the International Lannan Literary Award for Nonfiction Animal tracks, word magic, the speech of stones, the power of letters, and the taste of the wind all figure prominently in this intellectual tour de force that returns us to our senses and to the sensuous terrain that sustains us. This major work of ecological philosophy startles the senses out of habitual ways of perception. For a thousand generations, human beings viewed themselves as part of the wider community of nature, and they carried on active relationships not only with other people with other animals, plants, and natural objects (including mountains, rivers, winds, and weather patters) that we have only lately come to think of as "inanimate." How, then, did humans come to sever their ancient reciprocity with the natural world? What will it take for us to recover a sustaining relation with the breathing earth? In The Spell of the Sensuous David Abram draws on sources as diverse as the philosophy of Merleau-Ponty, Balinese shamanism, Apache storytelling, and his own experience as an accomplished sleight-of-hand of magician to reveal the subtle dependence of human cognition on the natural environment. He explores the character of perception and excavates the sensual foundations of language, which--even at its most abstract--echoes the calls and cries of the earth. On every page of this lyrical work, Abram weaves his arguments with a passion, a precision, and an intellectual daring that recall such writers as Loren Eisleley, Annie Dillard, and Barry Lopez.

A Natural History of Human Morality

Author: Michael Tomasello

Publisher: Harvard University Press

ISBN: 0674915879

Category: Psychology

Page: 206

View: 9037

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Michael Tomasello offers the most detailed account to date of the evolution of human moral psychology. Based on experimental data comparing great apes and human children, he reconstructs two key evolutionary steps whereby early humans gradually became an ultra-cooperative and, eventually, a moral species capable of acting as a plural agent “we”.

The Tree

A Natural History of what Trees Are, how They Live, and why They Matter

Author: Colin Tudge

Publisher: Broadway Books

ISBN: 0307395391

Category: Nature

Page: 459

View: 2059

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Looks at the world of trees, journeying around the world to explore the facts, characteristics, natural history, life cycles, evolution, and environmental impact of trees and forests.