Danielle Clode reviews 'Adventures of a Young Naturalist: The Zoo Quest expeditions' by David Attenborough
David Attenborough turned ninety last year. In a short animation celebrating his birthday, two Aardman penguins muse on their first meeting with the famous naturalist. ‘There’s somethi More
Millions of words have been printed by and about Charles Darwin. There are hundreds of biographies, the dozens of books he wrote (including his own autobiography), as well as various pamph More
To complement our coverage of new books on the subject, we invited a number of writers, scholars, and environmentalists to nominate the books that have had the greatest effect on them from More
Danielle Clode reviews 'Wild Man From Borneo: A cultural history of the Orangutan' by Robert Cribb, Helen Gilbert, and Helen Tiffen
What does it mean to be human – nearly human, not-quite-human, or even inhuman? Such questions have preoccupied writers and researchers for centuries, from Charles Darwin and Mary Shelley to the uncanny valley of robotics, AI, and a trans-human future. In Wild Man from Borneo, Robert Cribb, Helen Gilbert, and Helen Tiffen explore this question through the ... More
Maralinga is a name familiar to most Australians as the site of British nuclear testing in the 1950s. Less familiar are the earlier tests at the Monte Bello Islands off Western Australia and Emu Field in South Australia. All have left a toxic legacy in our history.
Elizabeth Tynan’s finely researched book on the history of Maralinga and its precursors brin ... More
Danielle Clode reviews 'Crusoe’s Island: A rich and curious history of pirates, castaways and madness' by Andrew Lambert
The story of Robinson Crusoe, penned by Daniel Defoe in 1719, is one those remarkable books that created a new genre. The ‘Robinsonade’ or castaway story became one of the most popular forms of adventure novel, inspiring a host of famous ‘imitators’: Robert Louis Stevenson’s The Ebb-Tide (1894), R.M. Ballantyne’s The Coral Island (1858) ... More
By the end of the eighteenth-century, botany was one of the few sciences regarded as suitable for women. Carolus Linnaeus had infamously ...More
In 2010, writing in Westerly, Carmel Lawrence despaired about the lack of science writing in the collection of 'best non-fiction' of the year that she had been asked to review. It wasn't, she concluded, for want of material. Science writing had undergone a huge resurgence in popularity at t ... More
What is it about caves? An irresistibly enchanting hidey-hole to any small child and yet the birthplace of our deepest fears. Dragons, narguns, goblins, and gorgons are all born of caves, and yet who can go past an opening in the rock without peeking in? We cannot resist exploring this underworld of darkness which seems to provide safety from the perils outside, whi ... More
To complement the essays, commentaries, reviews, and photographic essay in this issue, we asked a group of leading environmentalists, scientists, commentators, and writers what they regard as the most urgent action needed for environmental reform.
There is an urgent need for widespread recognition of the interrelationship between the ... More