Unnatural Selection

cover of Unnatural Selection

Hardback - April 2015 - AU $39.99

Explains how humans are driving rapid contemporary evolution through the use of toxic chemicals and what we can do about it.

Gonorrhea. Bed bugs. Weeds. Salamanders. Polar Bears. People. All are evolving, some surprisingly rapidly, in response to our chemical age. In Unnatural Selection, Emily Monosson shows how our drugs, pesticides and pollution are exerting intense selection pressure on all manner of species. And we humans might not like the result. Monosson reveals that the very code of life is more fluid than once imagined. When our powerful chemicals put the pressure on to evolve or die, beneficial traits can sweep rapidly through a population. Species with explosive population growth – the bugs, bacteria, and weeds – tend to thrive, while bigger, slower-to-reproduce creatures, like ourselves, are more likely to succumb. + Full description

Unnatural Selection is eye-opening and more than a little disquieting. But it also suggests how we might lessen our impact: manage pests without creating super bugs; protect individuals from disease without inviting epidemics; and benefit from technology without threatening the health of our children.

- Short description


Hardback | April 2015 | $ 39.99
ISBN: 9781610914987 | 232 pages
Publisher: Island Press, USA


Emily Monosson is an independent biochemical toxicologist, writer, consultant and university instructor. She is an adjunct Professor at University of Massachusetts, Amherst, and teaches as a visiting faculty at Mount Holyoke College. She is the author of Evolution in a Toxic World. Environmental Health