The Origin of Species by Charles Darwin

The Origin of Species

Darwin's theory of natural selection issued a profound challenge to orthodox thought and belief: no being or species has been specifically created; all are locked into a pitiless struggle for existence, with extinction looming for those not fitted for the task. Yet The Origin of Species (1859) is also a humane and inspirational vision of ecological interrelatedness, revealing the complex mutual interdependencies between animal and plant life, cli...

Details The Origin of Species

TitleThe Origin of Species
Release DateMay 1st, 2004
PublisherCastle Books
GenreScience, Nonfiction, Classics, Biology, Evolution, Philosophy

Reviews The Origin of Species

  • Pam
    such a freakin' genius! and the sadest part is, that his "science" literally killed him. if you've read a lot in Darwin (as I have) you come to understand that as a religious man, his studies seriously conflicted with his beliefs. I hate it when I hear someone say that Darwin says, "we come from monkeys." because that is not the case.his theory is on EVOLUTION, not monkeys. all he wanted people to understand was adaptation and survival of the fit...
  • Ahmad Sharabiani
    On the Origin of Species by Means of Natural Selection or the Preservation of Favoured Races in the Struggle for Life = On Natural selection = Natural selection, Charles Darwin Natural selection is the differential survival and reproduction of individuals due to differences in phenotype. It is a key mechanism of evolution, the change in the heritable traits characteristic of a population over generations. Charles Darwin popularized the term "Natu...
  • Sean Barrs
    Charles Darwin changed the world when he wrote this book.I mean if you think about it logically, no other book has had such a powerful impact on the way humanity views the earth; yes, we have countless religious doctrine, but never before had there been a book that so drastically alternated our perceptions of the mechanisms that are behind our existence. Im not talking about on a spiritual level, a level of ideas that cannot be scientifically pro...
  • Manny
    Dear Carol,Thank you for your mail, and of course I remember meeting you on the flight last month! It was a very interesting discussion and I'm still thinking about it. The semester has now started here at Creationist U and I am working hard, but I found time to read the book you recommended. And I'm glad I did, because it was really a lot better than I thought it would be.I guess I was expecting Darwin to be like Richard Dawkins, but he was resp...
  • Stephen M
    Edits for NR because I love him that much. This:"This preservation of favourable variations and the rejection of injurious variations, I call Natural Selection. Variations neither useful not injurious would not be affected by natural selection, and would be left a fluctuating element, as perhaps we see in the species called polymorphic."We shall best understand the probable course of natural selection by taking the case of a country undergoing so...
  • Darwin8u
    One general law, leading to the advancement of all organic beings, namely, multiply, vary, let the strongest live and the weakest die. Charles Darwin, The Origin of Species It is amazing to think that this mild, scientific book published a little less than 155 years ago caused (and is still causing) such a complete storm. I'm surprised at how adapted we have become (or at least the segment of those people on the planet who don't reject Darwin's ...
  • Paul E. Morph
    Ah, you can't really review a book like this. It's almost complete transcended its role as a seminal scientific tome and become a legitimate historic artefact. You can't review a historic artefact.This is a fantastic read, even viewed in a completely different way to how it would have been read at the time. It really is amazing how much evolutionary biology Darwin was able to formulate almost a century before Watson and Crick's discovery of DNA. ...
  • Dan
    Too much to unpack here and not an easy read as it was written 150 years ago. Despite all of the knocks against reading Origin for enjoyment, I can only express extreme awe and state the obvious - how much of a genius Darwin was. From his theory of natural selection to glacier theory, to hybrid plants, to fossil theory and a dozen other biological and geological theories that he developed or contributed to, it is remarkable to me how very little ...
  • Lisa (Harmonybites)
    Decry or applaud it, there's no question this work has had a profound effect not just on science, but the culture at large. What I wouldn't read this book for is the science, or in an effort to either defend or refute the argument for evolution. The core of Darwin's argument certainly is still what was taught in my Catholic high school biology class (taught by a nun). In a nutshell, the theory is that given there are wide-ranging subtle Variation...
  • Joey Woolfardis
    "If, however, a caterpillar were taken out of a hammock made up, for instance, to the third stage, and were put into one finished up to the sixth stage, so that much of its work was already done for it, far from feeling the benefit of this, it was much embarrassed, and, in order to complete its hammock, seemed forced to start from the third stage." On the Origin of Species is one of the most important books ever written. Although a lot of people-...
  • Michael
    I swear I cannot figure what all the fuss is about. This is a science book. It was sometimes a bit tough to read because of the depth into detail. If I were an anthropologist I'm sure I would more appreciate that detail, but as a layman it did at times seem too thick. If I were lost in an uncivilized world and had only two books, I would want a Webster's dictionary and this Origin of Species. The dictionary to learn word definitions and this book...
  • Clif Hostetler
    My book group selected this book for discussion probably because of the historic impact it has had on the field of science. However, I found it to be very worthy of respect from a literary viewpoint. Charles Darwin's writing comes across as a methodical thinker and patient explainer to many recalcitrant readers who are determined not to believe a word he says. He had me convinced after only a couple dozen pages, but he kept doing what seemed to m...
  • Jessica
    Are you an Evangelical Christian? Or, perhaps you are a student participating in one of nation's modern and progressive science classes, learning about the Origins of Man, but confused by the lack of scientifically observable studies missing from your text books. Fortunately for you, Darwin spent decades of his life documenting the observable changes in various species, hypothesizing about these changes and drawing some interesting conclusions ab...
  • Markus
    On The Origin of SpeciesDarwin (1809-1882)Darwin published this book in 1859. It is his scientific treaty based on the idea of all organism living on the earth to be descendants from one or several original progenitors.The work is mostly a transcription of the authors notes throughout his years of study and his famous voyage on the HMS Beagle to the Southern Hemisphere. It had likely been addressed to the quite sceptic scientific community of his...
  • Lori
    Read a long time ago but wouldn't have been able to review it anyway. Some have done a great job I see. But not me, I don't have the words for this one and GR doesn't have enough stars.
  • Vanessa J.
    This is not exactly what I would call "fun reading," but it's worth it. At times, it was hard getting through this book, mainly because it's dense and sometimes Darwin tended to drag and not get to the point, but I'm glad I finally read it. However, I think I should have read this at another point of my life - I mean, it was exasperating to read something I had just studied at a biology course I was taking. I still don't regret reading this. If y...
  • D.G.
    My science education left a lot to be desired. I was never taught the Theory of Natural Selection in school but only heard it mentioned when some adults scoffed at it. Thankfully, my natural talents steered me away from a career in Biology or Genetics, so this lack of knowledge didnt affect my career prospects. It just affected my understanding of the world. I learned years later the basics of the theory but this just piqued my interest about rea...
  • Annie
    Sometimes when I read books with ideas that changed the world, I notice theyre boring. Not because its poorly written, archaically worded, or just a boring topic- all untrue- but because the ideas were so influential that the entire book is just one big duh, yeah, Im already on board with this, you dont need to harp on so much, I see what youre getting at and I agree it makes sense. (I remember a similar feeling with Singers Animal Liberation, fo...
  • Katie Bananas
    Celebratory 2:00 am review, just great!!! When I finished this, I was definitely clapping my hands!! This is not a story if you are one of those who are mad excited to read it. It's a tome of its size that is equivalent to an encyclopedia with depth, width, and value. It's the densest nonfiction I have read. It is an attempt to read a genre I really wasn't familiar with. Since I got into reading, I believe that nonfiction is one of the genres tha...
  • Pollopicu
    What in the world made me want to read this Goliath of a science book? My goodness! I guess if I had to search deep within myself I would have to say I wanted to read anything Darwin, just to see what all the fuss was about, but mostly because of the reviews I read on Goodreads. I thought The Origin of Species would turn me into the science-loving person I always thought lurked inside me.The main reason I finished it is because any science book t...
  • Cora Judd
    Richard Dawkins' narration of this book is excellent -- I enjoyed it immensely, however, without my semester of physical anthropology, the essential points would have required much more mental attention. Dawkins inserts clarifying information throughout the book and while Darwin's writing is wonderfully clear, I think more of Dawkins' notes and updates would have been an enhancement.I was surprised to see how diverse Darwin's background research ...
  • Stephen
    3.0 to 3.5 stars. Not anything like what I would call a "fun" read, but I am really happy that I finally read this book given the tremendous influence it has had on the history on modern scientific thinking. The book itself, while dry, is fairly accessible and is not bogged down with overly complex scientific jargon. I would read a couple of chapters a day in between my "pleasure" reading and it made the book much easier to absorb. Definitely wor...
  • Kevin Shepherd
    "We are the one creature to whom natural selection has bequeathed a brain complex enough to comprehend the laws that govern the universe. And we should be proud that we are the only species that has figured out how we came to be." ~Jerry A. Coyne, Ph.D., University of ChicagoOn the Origin of Species is Darwin laying out his theory of natural selection in precise, laborious detail. He knew quite well many of the objections and arguments this suppo...
  • Rafael
    im just rating this 4 stars because of its complexity, but not for the contents of the book, witch can rightfully be called a piece of art, this has to be the most complex read i had in years, it's a beutifully explained book on evoulution of especies by natural and human selection, it is incredibly detail and meticulously explained, for maximum enjoyment you must know selections and natural order to fully understand this book as well as geograph...
  • Cassandra Kay Silva
    It took me awhile to drag myself into reading this one. People have always commented that it was so dull and that it was convoluted and hard to follow and I have always believed in evolution and found modern books very accessible on the subject so I thought why bother? Then again I have a thing for classics, and as my list of books on evolution grew I started to chide myself that I still had not even read from Darwin's own hand. So I bent to the ...
  • Karnika Kapoor
    Not to my surprise, many questions that are thrown at Richard Dawkins by the creationist on debate panels have been answered as it is in this book. If only people read this by themselves!It was fascinating how the "missing links" was explained by Darwin in a context of geology. Most importantly he was indicating towards Tectonics (that was brought into light many years after darwin's time by Alfred Wegener). Clearly, Darwin was way ahead of his c...
  • Joe
    Having finished Origin, I am taking the liberty of adding a few comments at the top of what I posted when I first added it to my "currently-reading shelf." To the would-be classics reader who is a bit daunted at the notion of tackling a fourteen chapter science book written in 19th Century technical terms I offer the suggestion that the back half of Origin is purely optional and can be let go. The first six chapters are the most enjoyable. Four i...
  • Morgan
    I can now truly say that, having read the Origin of Species, I find the theory of evolution to be complete and utter hogwash. Darwin never truly gives an explanation for how microevolution can realistically extrapolated into macroevolution. Also, when he brings up objections against his theory, he gives an elaborate excuse for why he cannot prove his point rather than proving it. I am still a firm believer in Creation. It is a lot more logical th...
  • Ruth
    With my brand new shiny degree in geology/paleontology, this was the first book I read after commencement. I give it 5 stars for the importance of its text, not for its readability.
  • Trish
    So this is the foundation of the theory of evolution. No, Darwin was not the first or only one with musings much like the ones described in this book, but he took some other people's theories (incl. that of his own grandfather) and took them further or perfected them.After having spent 5 years on the Beagle and thus seeing all kinds of places, Darwin had returned to England. It would be many years before he published this book but during the last...