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In this volume, a distinguished team of international authorities reports on the latest research on the origins of the most fundamental features of our world. Martin Rees begins the book with a bang, the Big Bang that was the probable start of our universe. The contributors then focus on the origins of the solar system, material complexity and the human species. The volume ends with essays by John Maynard Smith on social behavior, Ernest Gellner on society and John Lyons on language. The first in The Darwin College Lectures, the book is derived from a highly successful series of lively public lectures which have been revised and illustrated for publication under the editorship of Professor A.C. Fabian of the Institute of Astronomy, University of Cambridge.
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