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Ideas can change the world

Aeon is a registered charity committed to the spread of knowledge and a cosmopolitan worldview.
But we can’t do it without you.

Aeon is a registered charity committed to the spread of knowledge and a cosmopolitan worldview. Our mission is to create a sanctuary online for serious thinking.

No ads, no paywall, no clickbait – just thought-provoking ideas from the world’s leading thinkers, free to all. But we can’t do it without you.

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ORIGINAL

Why life is the way it is

6 minutes

Chimeras and lightning: a radical perspective on the evolution of complex life

Life on earth – from mushrooms to humans and everything in between – seems enormously diverse. At the cellular level, however, almost all complex lifeforms are surprisingly similar. Why life is this way, though, remains mysterious. In this Aeon interview, the UK biochemist and author Nick Lane discusses his research on the connection between energy and genes, which, he hypothesises, made possible the radical transformation from single-celled organisms to complex life about 4 billion years ago.

Producer: Kellen Quinn

Interviewer: Nigel Warburton

Editor: Adam D'Arpino

Support Aeon

Ideas can change the world

Aeon is a registered charity committed to the spread of knowledge and a cosmopolitan worldview.

But we can’t do it without you.

Aeon is a registered charity committed to the spread of knowledge and a cosmopolitan worldview. Our mission is to create a sanctuary online for serious thinking.

No ads, no paywall, no clickbait – just thought-provoking ideas from the world’s leading thinkers, free to all. But we can’t do it without you.

Become a Friend for $5 a month or Make a one-off donation

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