Natalie Angier is an American nonfiction writer and a science journalist for The New York Times Video: Natalie Angier – The Canon: A Whirligig Tour of the Beautiful Basics of Science (May 16, Panel discussion with Neil Turok, Michael D. Griffin, Nadia El-Awady and Stewart Brand, at the Quantum to Cosmos festival. Editorial Reviews. From Publishers Weekly. Science is underappreciated and undervalued in a The Canon: A Whirligig Tour of the Beautiful Basics of Science – Kindle edition by Natalie Angier. Download it once and read it on your Kindle. Natalie Angier, a science writer for the New York Times, has written a wonderful book called The Canon: A Whirligig Tour of the Beautiful.

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General Motors International award for writing about cancer.

Jul 11, Aimee rated it did not like it Shelves: I am reading this book slowly. The subtitle” A whirligig tour of the beautiful basics of science, should have been my first clue, but i translated whirligig as more whirlwind and i bought the book. Overall, I found ‘The Canon’ to fall short of expectations and I hope danon I find a book that delivers on it’s promise to make the basics jatalie science interesting and accesible. Science maintains its anger status not by means of a conspiracy against its nerdiness, but because, as its advocate readily enthuses, it is big, unwieldy, impossible to pin down.

Firstly, the author started by promising the reader that she was going to take a different approach from the typical introductory science book or class. Here she disputes zngier example of blood clotting as a point in favor of intelligent design:.

To see what your friends thought of this book, please sign up. The New York Times. I should have read this book only one chapter at a time. Clears up a lot of bunk, and would be useful as a refresher to get a handle on each subject.


The Canon: A Whirligig Tour of the Beautiful Basics of Science – Natalie Angier – Google Libros

Excellent book for anyone who was interested in science as a child and had it slowly leached out of them by the public school system.

The problem I had was that at times the author seemed to be more focused on finding cute ways to say things than on the ideas themselves. Angier so ably and naralie covers natali this slim — under pages — volume is the scientific method, probabilities, physics, chemistry, biology, geology, and astronomy. This is really interesting stuff. This got to the point that I started to feel dumb, not because I couldn’t understand the science, but because I couldn’t parse her goddamn sentences.

Apr 06, Joe rated it did not like it Recommends it for: Natalie Angier has 1 media appearance. Her tools are a talent for clear and concise description, along with a reliance on effective metaphor. To find out more, including how to control cookies, see here: Go further, and the alcoholic intoxication induced by severe overdose of puns and jokes gave me vertigo.

Anyway, if there’s a main idea here, it’s that the book blew. And that is a pity, because other books, more focused, do a much better job of enlightening beginners as to the basics of what each science does and is. The chapter on evolutionary biology natalje my favorite, and covers not only the mechanics of evolution but the controversy, and explains the canom and bad reasoning of the Intelligent Design movement.

But then another beautiful sentence is thrown at you and you go, OK.

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Review: The Canon by Natalie Angier | Books | The Guardian

I’m just glad I already caonn science, or I’d never want anything to do with it again. Her writing is a bit facile, but it’s still a great read. High schools tend to teach biology and chemistry before natqlie, but that is starting to change with the recognition that physics deals with the building blocks of life, and should be understood before chemistry, and then biology.

Sometimes the best explainers of a topic are outsiders or laymen, rather than practitioners in the field. Indeed, it was this activity that got us both the terms “gentleman scientist” and “dilettante,” descriptions you hardly ever hear applied to members of the general public anymore.


My gut tells me the author thinks this syntactical tactic is either intellectually illustrative or seductively scholarly, like James Bond giving a Powerpoint presentation, but with slightly less ass slapping. Angier argues that science is for sophisticates and then spends an entire book dressing it up in silly clothes to make it more palatable.

The book gets an extra star for putting the very well done chapter on probability up front, so I could get through it before I began to hate the very existence of the universe for leading to the study of science and thus the writing of this book. The attempt to personalize “science and scientists” by cutesipie finishes to many major statements ahgier a little distracting after awhile.