Adam's Navel A Natural and Cultural History of the Human Form

ISBN-10: 0142004642

ISBN-13: 9780142004647

Edition: N/A

Authors: Michael Sims

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In this amusing and brilliantly conceived book, Michael Sims introduces you to your body. Moving from head to toe, Sims blends cultural history with evolutionary theory to produce a wonderfully original narrative in which he analyzes the visible parts of the body. In this fascinating brew of science and storytelling, readers encounter not only accessible explanations of the mechanics of their anatomy, but also the layers of mythology, religious lore, history, Darwinian theory, and popular culture that have helped to shape our understanding of any given body part. A titillating and unique book, Adams Navel is learned and entertaining, a marvelous lens through which to study the form we all inhabitbut may not really understand.
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Book details

List price: $15.00
Publisher: Penguin Publishing Group
Publication date: 6/29/2004
Binding: Paperback
Pages: 352
Size: 5.25" wide x 8.00" long x 1.00" tall
Weight: 0.726
Language: English

Michael Sims is the author of four nonfiction books: Darwin's Orchestra, Adam's Navel, Apollo's Fire, and a companion book to the National Geographic Channel series In the Womb: Animals. His three previous literary collections include The Annotated Archy and Mehitabel, The Penguin Book of Gaslight Crime, and Arsene Lupin, Gentleman-Thief. His writing has appeared in many periodicals in the U.S. and abroad, including New Statesman, Washington Post, Orion, American Archaeology, The Chronicle of Higher Education, and many others. He speaks often at colleges and other institutions and has appeared on many TV and radio programs, from CBS's Early Show and Inside Edition to a BBC Radio series about the human body. His Web site is;

Introduction: The Form Complete
Neanderthals Yawned
The Mystery of the Visible
Overture: Skin Deep
The Not-Quite-Naked Ape
The Hair of the Prophet
The Mark of the Beast
Burn It or Bury It
Samson's Hair
A Metaphysical Operation
The Etiquette of Deciduousness
The Family Face
The Face on Mars
The Vigilant Eye
Flesh Becomes a Mirror
The Blink of an Eye
The Dreaming Eye
Close Your Eyes
Houdini's Wiggle
The Ear of a Thousand Li
Darwin's Points and Houdini's Wiggle
Nor the Ear Filled with Hearing
A Ridiculous Organ
The Archaic Smile
Louis Armstrong's Lips
The Badge of a Harlot
A Kiss Is Just a Kiss
The Necessary and Ambivalent Tongue
Don't Read My Lips
The Weight of the World
Arms and the Man
The Monkey's Paw
A Free Hand
Finger Math
Rule of Thumb
Our Natal Autograph
Tobin's Palm
On the Other Hand
Playing Chess with Death
Madonna del Latte
Breasts and "the Breast"
Via Lactia
The She-Devil from Hooter City
The Pillow of Paradise Versus the Millstone of History
Adam's Navel
Untying the Knot
A Brief History of Navel-Gazing
A Leg to Stand On
Privy Members
The Commotion
Vagina Dialogues
Leonardo's Intelligent Organ
Boswell's Johnson
The Senator's Body Hair
Our Steed the Leg
Two Legs Good and Bad
The Scarecrow Learns to Dance
The Goddess with Beautiful Buttocks
Toes with Special Properties
Pedestrian Crossing
Selected Bibliography and Further Reading
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