Book Details

Freeman Dyson, renowned physicist and public intellectual, edits this year's volume of the finest science and nature writing.


Introduction by Freeman Dyson

Section A. Visions of Space
Andrew Corsello The believer, from Gentleman's Guarterly
Tom Wolfe One giant leap to nowhere, from The New York Times.
Steven Weinberg The missions of astronomy, from The New York Review of Books
Timothy Ferris Cosmic Vision, from National Geographic.
Timothy Ferris Seeking new earths, from National Geographic
Section B. Neurology displacing molecular biology
Jonah Lehrer Don't, from The New Yorker
Kathleen Mcgowan. Out of the past, from Discover.
John Colapinto Brain games, from The New Yorker
Section C. Natural beauty
Gustave Axelson The alpha accipiter, from Minnesota Conservation Volunteer
Don Stap Flight of the kulka, from Living Bird.
Matt Ridley Modern Darwins, from National Geographic
Tim Flannery. The superior civilization, from The New York Review of Books.
Kenneth Brower Still Blue, from National Geographic
Jane Goodall The lazarus effect, from National Geographic.
David Quammen Darwin's first clues, from National Geographic
Section D. The environment: Gloom and doom
Jim Carrier All you can eat, from Orion
Felix Salmon A formula for disaster, from Wired.
Dawn Stover Not so silent spring, from Conservation Magazine
Elizabeth Kolbert The catastrophist, from The New Yorker.
Elizabeth Kolbert The sixth extinction?, from The New Yorker
Section E. The environment: Small blessings
Robert Kunzig Scraping Bottom, from National Geographic
Michael Specter A life of its own, from The New Yorker.
Brian Boyd Purpose-driven life, from The American Scholar
Philip Gourevitch The monkey and the fish, from The New Yorker.
Section F. The environment: Big blessings
Richard Manning Graze anatomy, from Onearth
Burkhard Bilger. Hearth surgery, from The New Yorker
Evan Osnos Green Giant , from The New Yorker
George Black India, enlightened, from Onearth

Contributors' Notes

Other Notable Science And Nature Writing of 2009

Other distinguished submissions on this topic, selected by the series editor Tim Folger.

Adam Levey The Vanishing Youth Nutrient, from Prevention, September.
Alan Burdick The New Web of Life, from On Earth, Fall.
ALEC WILKINSON What Would Jesus Bet? , from The New Yorker, March 30.
Andrew Curry Rituals of the Nasca Lines, from Archaeology, May/June.
Anthony Aveni Apocalypse Soon? , from Archaeology, November/December.
Barry Lopez Notes from the Earth, from The American Scholar, Autumn.
Bill Sherwonit Reflections on Thrush Songs, Newt Tracks, and Old-Growth Stands of Trees, from Isle, Fall.
Bucky Mcmahon Relocation! Relocation! Relocation! , from Gentlemen's Quarterly, December.
Carl Zimmer The Entangled Bank. Discover, from November.
Charles Bowden Contested Ground, from Orion, November/December.
Charles Bowden Unseen Sahara, from National Geographic, October.
Chris Mooney Vaccination Nation, from Discover, June.
Christopher Solomon Foot Loose, from Outside, October.
Courtney Humphries The Body Politic, from April 14.
Daniel Goleman How Green is Green? , from Tricycle, Summer.
Daniel Libit The Bear Necessities, from The Washington Post Magazine, April 5.
David Gargill The General Electric Superfraud, from Harper's Magazine, December.
David Noland NASA and its Discontents, from Popular Mechanics, February.
David Wolman Turning the Tides, from Outside, January.
Douglas Fox California's Sinking Delta, from The Christian Science Monitor, December 2.
Elizabeth Kolbert Changing Rains, from National Geographic, April.
Erin Mccarthy Welcome to the Food Chain, from Popular Mechanics, July.
Frans De Waal The Empathy Instinct, from Discover, October.
Gary Taubes RNA Revolution, from Discover, October.
H. Allen Orr Which Scientist Can You Turst? , from The New York Review of Books, March 26.
Harrison H. Schmitt From the Moon to Mars, from Scientific American, July.
Heather Pringle Witness to Genocide, from Archaeology, January/February.
Jerome Groopman Robots That Care, from The New Yorker, November 2.
Joel Achenbach Will Yellowstone Blow Again? , from National Geographic, August.
John Horgan We Are Not Destined to Fight, from San Francisco Panorama, December 8.
Lester R. Brown Could Food Shortages Bring Down Civilization? , from Scientific American, May.
Liza Mundy Deer Heaven, from The Washington Post Magazine, April 26.
Marcia Angell Drug Companies & Doctors: A Story of Corruption, from The New York Review of Books, January 15.
Mark Dowie Nuclear Caribou, from Orion, January/February.
Mark Slouka Dehumanized, from Harper's Magazine, September.
Mckenzie Funk Arctic Landgrab, from National Geographic, May.
Michael J. Heckenberger Lost Cities of the Amazon, from Scientific American, October.
Michael Pollan Sneaky Orchids, from National Geographic, September.
Natalie Angier The Art of Deception, from National Geographic, August.
Neil H. Shubin This Old Body, from Scientific American, January.
Oliver Broudy Dead Man Driving, from Men's Health, December.
Oliver Broudy What If the Sun Could Kill You? , from Men's Health, July/August.
Richard Lewontin Why Darwin? , from The New York Review of Books, May 28.
Seth Lloyd Privacy and the Quantum Internet, from Scientific American, October.
Taras Grescoe The Trouble With Salmon, from Best Life, May.
Tom McGrath What If You Didn't Have to Grow Old? , from Men's Health, January/February.
Verlyn Klinkenborg Countdown to Extinction , from National Geographic, January.
Virginia Morrell Going to the Dogs, from Science, August 28.
William T. Vollmann Expectations, from San Francisco Panorama, December 8.