Consilience Productions
Book Picks

Lives of a Cell
     ----- Notes of a Biology Watcher

by Lewis Thomas
published by Penguin USA
© 1974 by Lewis Thomas

Click on image to purchase.

Lewis Thomas managed to be both a top pathology researcher and a brilliant, sophisticated writer. He almost singlehandedly invented what we might call the "existential biological essay" genre with this book, in which a person of great learning and perceptiveness might dare, however tentatively, to ponder the meaning of life (in several senses of the word).
He has certain themes that he returns to again and again: humans as hive animals, cells as cooperatives, fear of death, the language of animal smells and sounds, the uselessness of medicine compared to nature's healing powers, a dislike of nation-states and their grand ambitions (war, the space program, various attempts to "manage" science). His method is suggestive, metaphorical, allusive. Thomas is the master of a specific literary tone, caught between awestruck wonder at the beauty of nature and elegant Mandarin weariness at the inability of humans to comprehend those wonders. To read him is to feel, at moments, that the chasm between the two cultures has been bridged.

back to earth book picks

home | music | democracy | earth | money | projects | about | contact

Site design by Matthew Fries | © 2003-19 Consilience Productions. All Rights Reserved.
Consilience Productions, Inc. is a 501(c)(3) non-profit organization. EIN#: 26-3118904.
All contributions are fully tax deductible.

Support the "dialogue BEYOND music!"

Because broad and informed public participation is the bedrock of a free, democratic, and civil society, your generous donation will help increase participation in the process of social change. 100% tax deductible.
Thank you!


Co-op America Seal of Approval  Global Voices - The world is talking, are you listening?

Consilience Productions
7915 35th Avenue, #3B
Jackson Heights, NY 11372
(917) 604-8809