Evolution


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Coloured scanning electron microscope (SEM) of a water bear (Paramacrobiotus craterlaki) in moss. Photo by Eye of Science/Science Photo Library

Essay/
Evolution
Life is tough

Human life is fragile but tardigrades and other extremophiles show that life itself is in little danger of disappearing

David P Barash

Detail of White Cat (1935-38), by Gertrude Abercrombie. Courtesy the Smithsonian American Art Museum

Essay/
Biology
Life ≠ alive

A cat is alive, a sofa is not: that much we know. But a sofa is also part of life. Information theory tells us why

Michael Lachmann & Sara Walker

Crowds wait outside the entrance to the Académie Française for Henri Bergson to appear. Paris, 24 January 1918. From the Excelsior newspaper. Photo by Roger Violet/Topfoto

Essay/
Thinkers and theories
Henri Bergson, celebrity

Women loved Bergson’s philosophy of creativity, change and freedom, but their enthusiasm fuelled a backlash against him

Emily Herring

An exhibit depicts the life of a Neanderthal family in the new Neanderthal Museum in the northern town of Krapina, Croatia. 25 February 2010. Photo by Nikola Solic/Reuters

Essay/
Human evolution
The Neanderthal renaissance

Handprints on a cave wall, crumbs from a meal: the new science of Neanderthals radically recasts the meaning of humanity

Rebecca Wragg Sykes

Photo by Robert Postma/Design Pics/National Geographic

Essay/
Cognition and intelligence
The elephant as a person

Elephants might have the necessary capacities for personhood – we just need to help them acquire the cognitive scaffolding

Don Ross