Shadows of Forgotten Ancestors

Ranked #3 on the list Best Books by Ann Druyan

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About Shadows of Forgotten Ancestors

  • Year Released: 1993

Shadows of Forgotten Ancestors: A Search for Who We Are (1993) is a non-fiction book by the late Carl Sagan and his wife, Ann Druyan. World renowned scientist Carl Sagan and acclaimed author Ann Druyan have written a Roots for the human species, a lucid and riveting account of how humans got to be the way we are. Shadows of Forgotten Ancestors is a thrilling saga that starts with the origin of the Earth. It shows with humor and drama that many of our key traits — self-awareness, technology, family ties, submission to authority, hatred for those a little different from ourselves, reason, and ethics — are rooted in the deep past, and illuminated by our kinship with other animals. Sagan and Druyan conduct a breathtaking journey through space and time, zeroing in on critical turning points in evolutionary history, and tracing the origins of sex, altruism, violence, rape, and dominance. Their book culminates in a stunningly original examination of the connection between primate and human traits. Astonishing in scope, brilliant in its insights, and an absolutely compelling read, Shadows of Forgotten Ancestors is a triumph of popular science.

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