The master of destiny; 1930 a biography of the brain Free eBook

Download The master of destiny;  1930 a biography of the brain Free eBook

The master of destiny;  1930 a biography of the brain Free eBook

An excerpt  from the author's introduction:

Race after race of man has appeared on this earth, lasted but a short span of time, and then met disaster and extinction. Our modern race is of this series.

 We have reason to believe that it differs in quality from its forerunners chiefly in its cerebral endowment. That its progress from animalhood to civilization is due to this endowment, is not questioned, for its victory over the environment, its ascendency over all other animals is plainly due to its superior brainpower. How did this race originate? Like all the other races preceding it? Or by some aberrant, instantaneous freak of creation? How did it acquire its characteristic brain? As the bird its wings, as the elephant its trunk, as the camel its hump, or by a divine act of separate and special creation?

 Those who maintain the quarrel over man's origin are not those who have familiarized themselves with the history of the world and its creatures; they are not the astronomers, the geologists, the biologists, the anthropologists or the archeologists. They are clearly those who prefer believing in thinking, the traditionalists, good men mayhap but not necessarily wise. In the earlier days of science (it is only four or five hundred years old), its devoted laborers were persecuted by Church and State. They had to give respectful attention to criticism or else perish by fire and sword. But, as we have advanced slowly from religious persecution and the auto-da-fe to mere intolerant and wordy remonstrance, the scientist has paid but scant attention to these quarrels.

 He feels that as they are not of his making, neither are they his concern. Perhaps he is not quite right there. To be sure, he is criticized, not wisely but too well, and for the most part not quite fairly. We have criticized him for an assumed lack of reverence, but even more for his obvious indifference to our criticism. This has justice in it for, though his indifference to criticism may be excused, the ignorance upon which this criticism is founded should be his first concern, for the man of science is the teacher and ignorance is his very opportunity. Heretofore, however, he has seen his opportunity too narrowly, for he has been content to teach only the few embryo scientists apprenticed to his own particular field.

He has not until very lately, realized that his hard-won knowledge is far more needed and therefore far more owed to those who are most ignorant of it, in short, to the great mass of men and women outside the scientific world. "You are irreligious," said his critics. "You have been weighed and found wanting in that devotional attitude we find essential to humanity. You do not even listen to our reproaches. You are irreverent!" For the most part, there has been no answer. The men of science have been strangely preoccupied with their own business of finding out all they can of their fellow man, of his nature, his origin, his difficulties, his dangers, and of his predictable future, all in the faith that such knowledge will ultimately benefit mankind.

Content of the book

Chapter I. Primitive ancestors I origin and early days of the brain 11. Ancestors before the apes 24 the brain from fish to man iii. Man in the making 51 human progress from prehistoric to modern times iv. Eden or evolution 85 geneses and the origin of species v. Birthplace and early beginnings of man 107 influences of forest and plain on brain development vi. Dawn of the primate brain 129 the lowest of the monkey kind vii. On the way upward 152 brains of the old world monkeys viii. Manlike tendencies 168 brains of gibbon and orang-outang ix. Human in miniature 186 the brain of the chimpanzee- Almost human 212 the brain of the gorilla xl human at last 239 the brain of prehistoric man xil implements of human success 267 how the hand, foot, and brain led the way to humanity xiii estimates and values 301 assets and liabilities of the human brain xiv. The final test of the brain 330 world cooperation and civilization

Author Tilney, Frederick,:
Publication Date 1930
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