A short history of nearly everything

Book On CD
Published 2003
Item Details

In this book Bill Bryson explores the most intriguing and consequential questions that science seeks to answer and attempts to understand everything that has transpired from the Big Bang to the rise of civilization. To that end, Bill Bryson apprenticed himself to a host of the world's most profound scientific minds, living and dead. His challenge is to take subjects like geology, chemistry, paleontology, astronomy, and particle physics and see if there isn't some way to render them comprehensible to people, like himself, made bored (or scared) stiff of science by school. His interest is not simply to discover what we know but to find out how we know it. How do we know what is in the center of the earth, thousands of miles beneath the surface? How can we know the extent and the composition of the universe, or what a black hole is? How can we know where the continents were 600 million years ago? How did anyone ever figure these things out? On his travels through space and time, Bill Bryson encounters a splendid gallery of the most fascinating, eccentric, competitive, and foolish personalities ever to ask a hard question. In their company, he undertakes a sometimes profound, sometimes funny, and always supremely clear and entertaining adventure in the realms of human knowledge.

15 audio discs : digital ; 4 3/4 in.
digital optical 1.4 m. per second Digital recording
audio file CD audio
Read by Richard Matthews.
pt. 1. Lost in the cosmos (How to build a universe
Welcome to the solar system
The Reverend Evans's universe)
part 2. The size of the earth (The measure of things
The stone-breakers
Science red in tooth and claw
Elemental matters)
part 3. A new age dawns (Einstein's universe
The mighty atom
Getting the lead out
Muster Mark's quarks
The earth moves)
part 4. Dangerous planet (Bang!
The fire below
Dangerous beauty)
part 5. Life itself (Lonely planet
Into the troposphere
The bounding main
The rise of life
Small world
Life goes on
Good-bye to all that
The richness of being
Darwin's singular notion
The stuff of life)
part 6. The road to us (Ice time
The mysterious biped
The restless ape
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