Using a broad selection of classic and current sources, The Natural History of the Earth probes selected discussions within biology, climatology, geology, and geomorphology and explores a selection of debates about Earth and life history, considering their origins and their present state-of-play.
After outlining the arguments, placing them in an historical context and indicating their significance, the book goes on to deal with specific debates. In the geosphere section, topics covered include geological processes, the bombardment hypothesis, frigid climates and cataclysmic floods, and in the section concerning the biosphere, the topics covered include evolutionary patterns, mass extinctions, patterns in life’s history and life–environment connections.
Written in a clear and accessible style, this volume will interest Earth and life scientists, physical geographers and any informed person fascinated by long-term Earth history. This accessible volume is illustrated throughout with over fifty informative diagrams, photographs, tables and over 700 references.
1. Introducing Debates 2. Building the Earth 3. Bombarding the Earth 4. Freezing the Earth 5. Flooding the Earth 6. Evolving Life 7. Destroying Life 8. History of Life 9. Life in Control?