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After Man: A Zoology of the Future by Dougal…

After Man: A Zoology of the Future (1981)

by Dougal Dixon, John Butler (Illustrator), Philip Hood (Illustrator), Gary Marsh (Illustrator), Brian McIntyre (Illustrator)2 more, Diz Wallis (Illustrator), Roy Woodard (Illustrator)

Other authors: Desmond Morris (Introduction)

Other authors: See the other authors section.

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423625,018 (4.03)6

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» See also 6 mentions

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I remember thinking this was stupid ( )
  Baku-X | Jan 10, 2017 |
I remember thinking this was stupid ( )
  BakuDreamer | Sep 7, 2013 |
this book apparently caused a big stir when it was published 25 years ago, and it's quite justified. it's every bit as delightful & imaginative as those discovery channel CGI specials about dinosaurs roaming the earth. special added bonus is the very well written introductory section that simply (and accurately!) lays out the basics of biology and evolution; this alone makes the book worth it. so why the less than flawless score? while the author does have a few innovative and totally believable ideas (e.g., that the fast-breeding and hardy rodents will arise as the dominant predator class of the future), far too much of the book felt gimmicky or cut-and-paste (e.g., slap an elephant's trunk on a pig). the illustrations are good, and it's a fun read overall. ( )
  fireweaver | Mar 31, 2013 |
This book is very, very pretty, and also a fascinating excercise in worldbuilding for the fun of it. It describes a postulated future Earth, 50 million years from now, built on the remains of a world which was devastated by mankind and then regenerated after Man wiped himself out.

It's a wonderful demonstration of evolution in action, with a guide to Earth's evolutionary history in the front, and every new animal described in terms of its evolutionary history and sorted by biome, with gorgeous watercolor illustrations of everything.

I had some difficulties with the book itself, though: firstly, the particular species he chose to wipe out as a results of Mankind, and the species which survived - he thinks rabbits and rats would survive because of their ability to live among human habitats, but not deer, cats, or horses? I'm sure a lot of the individual choices were simply down to what animals he wanted to work with, and what would give cool results, -- and extinctions do often seem utterly arbitrary - but presenting it as the obvious result seems like sloppy thinking.

Much more importantly, though, he focuses entirely on charismatic animals. There is almost no mention of fish or invertebrates, and plant communities - which have if anything been more wholly altered by human action - are left unmentioned and completely unchanged, so that his fantastical rabbucks and giant predatory rats wander through a forest ecosystem of still entirely recognizable modern plants.
1 vote melannen | Dec 7, 2010 |
I first discovered this book when I was about eight years old in the local library. But then it was stolen so I could no longer drool over the beautifully drawn images. I found it again in later years, thanks to the internet, and it is one of my all-time favourite books. I can't rave about this book enough! ( )
  desertroamer | Jan 14, 2007 |
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» Add other authors (15 possible)

Author nameRoleType of authorWork?Status
Dougal Dixonprimary authorall editionscalculated
Butler, JohnIllustratormain authorall editionsconfirmed
Hood, PhilipIllustratormain authorall editionsconfirmed
Marsh, GaryIllustratormain authorall editionsconfirmed
McIntyre, BrianIllustratormain authorall editionsconfirmed
Wallis, DizIllustratormain authorall editionsconfirmed
Woodard, RoyIllustratormain authorall editionsconfirmed
Morris, DesmondIntroductionsecondary authorall editionsconfirmed
Mörling, MikaelTranslatorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Segnestam, MatsForewordsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
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The form and position of living things on earth can be attributed to two things -- evolution and environment.
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Amazon.com Product Description (ISBN 0312194331, Paperback)

What exotic creatures does tomorrow hold? Dougal Dixon's classic work of speculative anthropology blends science and fantasy in a stunning zoology of the future.

(retrieved from Amazon Thu, 12 Mar 2015 18:04:32 -0400)

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