Animal Behaviour

A Very Short Introduction
Author: Tristram D. Wyatt
Publisher: Oxford University Press
ISBN: 0198712154
Category: Science
Page: 146
View: 8225

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Animal behaviour is a central topic of zoology, and with the development of ideas concerning the role of genes as well as environment the subject has been transformed. Tristram Wyatt gives a modern view, including a sense of the power of gene knock-outs, computing and image analysis to enable detailed experiments and observations of behaviour.

Animal Rights: A Very Short Introduction


Author: David DeGrazia
Publisher: Oxford Paperbacks
ISBN: 9780192853608
Category: Nature
Page: 131
View: 8866

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By presenting models for understanding animals' moral status and rights, and examining their mental lives and welfare, the author explores the implications for how we should treat animals in connection with our diet, zoos, and research.

The Animal Kingdom: A Very Short Introduction


Author: Peter Holland
Publisher: Oxford University Press
ISBN: 0199593213
Category: Science
Page: 126
View: 1670

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Molecular biology has revolutionized our understanding of animals and their evolution. In this Very Short Introduction, Peter Holland provides an authoritative summary of the modern view of animal life, its origins, and the new classification resulting from DNA studies.

Evolution: a Very Short Introduction


Author: Brian Charlesworth,Deborah Charlesworth
Publisher: Oxford University Press
ISBN: 0198804369
Category:
Page: 160
View: 6211

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Less than 450 years ago, all European scholars believed that the Earth was at the centre of a Universe that was at most a few million miles in extent, and that the planets, sun, and stars all rotated around this centre. Less than 250 years ago, they believed that the Universe was createdessentially in its present state about 6000 years ago. Even less than 150 years ago, the view that living species were the result of special creation by God was still dominant. The recognition by Charles Darwin and Alfred Russel Wallace of the mechanism of evolution by natural selection hascompletely transformed our understanding of the living world, including our own origins. In this Very Short Introduction Brian and Deborah Charlesworth provide a clear and concise summary of the process of evolution by natural selection, and how natural selection gives rise to adaptations and eventually, over many generations, to new species. They introduce the central concepts of thefield of evolutionary biology, as they have developed since Darwin and Wallace on the subject, over 140 years ago, and discuss some of the remaining questions regarding processes. They highlight the wide range of evidence for evolution, and the importance of an evolutionary understanding forinstance in combating the rapid evolution of resistance by bacteria to antibiotics and of HIV to antiviral drugs. This reissue includes some key updates to the main text and a completely updated Further Reading section.ABOUT THE SERIES: The Very Short Introductions series from Oxford University Press contains hundreds of titles in almost every subject area. These pocket-sized books are the perfect way to get ahead in a new subject quickly. Our expert authors combine facts, analysis, perspective, new ideas, andenthusiasm to make interesting and challenging topics highly readable.

Veterinary Science


Author: James Yeates
Publisher: Oxford University Press
ISBN: 0198790961
Category: Medical
Page: 160
View: 5589

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Every year billions of animals, from housecats to racehorses to pythons, are treated by veterinarians. The use of veterinary science to treat the health of animals has a long history; for the past five centuries it has developed as our understanding of animals' fundamental biology, pathology, and pharmacology has grown. Rapid global changes expected in the twenty-first century will require the profession to respond proactively, embracing new challenges and opportunities. James Yeates, Chief Veterinary Officer of the RSPCA, introduces the field of veterinary science, covering the history of its scientific and clinical aspects from early practices to recent challenges such as the outbreak of BSE and antibiotic resistance, and considering the differences between human medicine and veterinary medicine. Analyzing the key roles played by diagnosis, treatment, and prevention with regard to the health of farm animals and pets, he relates this to wider aspects concerning public health, such as zoonoses (diseases that jump from animals to humans). Yeates also covers recent "One Health" approaches involving the health of both humans and animals, seen as synergistic, and discusses the challenges for the future of veterinary medicine, including the ethical dilemmas in balancing the interests of owners and animals when they do not coincide. ABOUT THE SERIES: The Very Short Introductions series from Oxford University Press contains hundreds of titles in almost every subject area. These pocket-sized books are the perfect way to get ahead in a new subject quickly. Our expert authors combine facts, analysis, perspective, new ideas, and enthusiasm to make interesting and challenging topics highly readable.

Learning


Author: Mark Haselgrove
Publisher: Oxford University Press
ISBN: 0199688362
Category: Psychology
Page: 144
View: 4423

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What is learning? How does it take place? What happens when it goes wrong? The topic of learning has been central to the development of the science of psychology since its inception. Without learning there can be no memory, no language and no intelligence. Indeed it is rather difficult to imagine a part of psychology, or neuroscience, that learning does not touch upon. In this Very Short Introduction Mark Haselgrove describes learning from the perspective of associative theories of classical and instrumental conditioning, and considers why these are the dominant, and best described analyses of learning in contemporary psychology. Tracing the origins of these theories, he discusses the techniques used to study learning in both animals and humans, and considers the importance of learning for animal behaviour and survival. ABOUT THE SERIES: The Very Short Introductions series from Oxford University Press contains hundreds of titles in almost every subject area. These pocket-sized books are the perfect way to get ahead in a new subject quickly. Our expert authors combine facts, analysis, perspective, new ideas, and enthusiasm to make interesting and challenging topics highly readable.

Darwin: A Very Short Introduction


Author: Jonathan Howard
Publisher: Oxford Paperbacks
ISBN: 0192854542
Category: Biography & Autobiography
Page: 125
View: 8682

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Arguments still rage about the implications of the evolutionary theory, and scepticism about Darwin's contribution to knowledge is widespread. This accessible study reasserts the importance of Darwin's work for the development of modern biology.

Game Theory: A Very Short Introduction


Author: Ken Binmore
Publisher: OUP Oxford
ISBN: 0191579580
Category: Mathematics
Page: 200
View: 9673

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Games are everywhere: Drivers manoeuvring in heavy traffic are playing a driving game. Bargain hunters bidding on eBay are playing an auctioning game. A firm negotiating next year's wage is playing a bargaining game. The opposing candidates in an election are playing a political game. The supermarket's price for corn flakes is decided by playing an economic game. Game theory is about how to play such games in a rational way. Even when the players have not thought everything out in advance, game theory often works for the same reason that mindless animals sometimes end up behaving very cleverly: evolutionary forces eliminate irrational play because it is unfit. Game theory has seen spectacular successes in evolutionary biology and economics, and is beginning to revolutionize other disciplines from psychology to political science. This Very Short Introduction introduces the fascinating world of game theory, showing how it can be understood without mathematical equations, and revealing that everything from how to play poker optimally to the sex ratio among bees can be understood by anyone willing to think seriously about the problem. ABOUT THE SERIES: The Very Short Introductions series from Oxford University Press contains hundreds of titles in almost every subject area. These pocket-sized books are the perfect way to get ahead in a new subject quickly. Our expert authors combine facts, analysis, perspective, new ideas, and enthusiasm to make interesting and challenging topics highly readable.

Economics: A Very Short Introduction


Author: Partha Dasgupta
Publisher: OUP Oxford
ISBN: 9780191578281
Category: Business & Economics
Page: 192
View: 872

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Economics has the capacity to offer us deep insights into some of the most formidable problems of life, and offer solutions to them too. Combining a global approach with examples from everyday life, Partha Dasgupta describes the lives of two children who live very different lives in different parts of the world: in the Mid-West USA and in Ethiopia. He compares the obstacles facing them, and the processes that shape their lives, their families, and their futures. He shows how economics uncovers these processes, finds explanations for them, and how it forms policies and solutions. Along the way, Dasgupta provides an intelligent and accessible introduction to key economic factors and concepts such as individual choices, national policies, efficiency, equity, development, sustainability, dynamic equilibrium, property rights, markets, and public goods. ABOUT THE SERIES: The Very Short Introductions series from Oxford University Press contains hundreds of titles in almost every subject area. These pocket-sized books are the perfect way to get ahead in a new subject quickly. Our expert authors combine facts, analysis, perspective, new ideas, and enthusiasm to make interesting and challenging topics highly readable.

Animal Behavior

A Beginner's Guide
Author: John Byers
Publisher: Oneworld Publications
ISBN: 1780742614
Category: Science
Page: 192
View: 5789

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Why do birds have regional accents? Can horses learn math? What do animals without eyes see? Questions such as these have fascinated scientists and animal lovers alike long before ethology — the study of animal behavior — became recognized as a science in the 1970s. Now, as issues of conservation and welfare dominate the field, an understanding of how and why animals act the way they do has become even more critical. Communicating the passion of the scientists who have driven the discipline, John Byers draws together evolutionary theory, ecology, population biology, genetics, physiology, and anatomy to demonstrate the diversity involved when studying animals. By explaining the mechanisms and motivations behind a range of animal movements he illuminates key issues about our own behavior while equipping readers with the core knowledge and skills to further their own studies.

Bacteria: A Very Short Introduction


Author: Sebastian G.B. Amyes
Publisher: OUP Oxford
ISBN: 0199578761
Category: Science
Page: 152
View: 8240

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In this Very Short Introduction, Sebastian Amyes explores the nature of bacteria. As a fundamental branch of life, they inhabit every part of the Earth's surface. Amyes examines their origin and evolution, bacteria in the environment, and bacteria and disease, to demonstrate the fundamental role they play in our existence.

Human Evolution: A Very Short Introduction


Author: Bernard Wood
Publisher: OUP Oxford
ISBN: 0191577812
Category: Science
Page: 144
View: 9942

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This Very Short Introduction traces the history of paleoanthropology from its beginnings in the eighteenth century to the latest fossil finds. Although concentrating on the fossil evidence for human evolution, it also covers the latest genetic evidence about regional variations in the modern human genome that relate to our evolutionary history. Bernard Wood draws on over thirty years of experience to provide an insider's view of the field and some of the personalities in it, and demonstrates that our understanding of human evolution is critically dependent on advances in related sciences such as paleoclimatology, geochronology, systematics, genetics, and developmental biology. ABOUT THE SERIES: The Very Short Introductions series from Oxford University Press contains hundreds of titles in almost every subject area. These pocket-sized books are the perfect way to get ahead in a new subject quickly. Our expert authors combine facts, analysis, perspective, new ideas, and enthusiasm to make interesting and challenging topics highly readable.

Anxiety: A Very Short Introduction


Author: Daniel Freeman,Jason Freeman
Publisher: Oxford University Press
ISBN: 0199567158
Category: Psychology
Page: 155
View: 4428

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Are we born with our fears or do we learn them? Why do our fears persist? What purpose does anxiety serve? In this Very Short Introduction we discover what anxiety is, what causes it, and how it can be treated. Looking at six major anxiety disorders, the authors introduce us to this most ubiquitous and essential of emotions.

Social Psychology: A Very Short Introduction


Author: Richard J. Crisp
Publisher: Oxford University Press, USA
ISBN: 019871551X
Category: Psychology
Page: 136
View: 995

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In this Very short introduction Richard Crisp tells the story of social psychology, the study of how society shapes behaviour, beliefs, attitudes, and values. Covering the history of the field, its key thinkers and major theories, Crisp discusses groundbreaking research in human behaviour. From attitudes to attraction, prejudice to persuasion, health to happiness, social psychology provides insights that can change the world.

Hormones

A Very Short Introduction
Author: Martin Luck
Publisher: American Chemical Society
ISBN: 0199672873
Category: Science
Page: 136
View: 3101

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Hormones are vital to the workings of the body, and while many people are aware of what hormones do, few have an appreciation of the nature and importance of the endocrine system. In this very short introduction, Martin Luck explains what hormones are, what they do, where they come from, and how they work.

Logic

A Very Short Introduction
Author: Graham Priest
Publisher: Oxford University Press
ISBN: 0198811705
Category: Mathematics
Page: 156
View: 6083

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Logic is often perceived as having little to do with the rest of philosophy, and even less to do with real life. In this lively and accessible introduction, Graham Priest shows how wrong this conception is. He explores the philosophical roots of the subject, explaining how modern formal logic deals with issues ranging from the existence of God and the reality of time to paradoxes of probability and decision theory. Along the way, the basics of formal logic are explained in simple, non-technical terms, showing that logic is a powerful and exciting part of modern philosophy. In this new edition Graham Priest expands his discussion to cover the subjects of algorithms and axioms, and proofs in mathematics. ABOUT THE SERIES: The Very Short Introductions series from Oxford University Press contains hundreds of titles in almost every subject area. These pocket-sized books are the perfect way to get ahead in a new subject quickly. Our expert authors combine facts, analysis, perspective, new ideas, and enthusiasm to make interesting and challenging topics highly readable.

Sound

A Very Short Introduction
Author: Mike Goldsmith
Publisher: Oxford University Press
ISBN: 0198708440
Category: Science
Page: 144
View: 4666

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Sound is integral to how we experience the world, in the form of noise as well as music. But what is sound? What is the physical basis of pitch and harmony? And how are sound waves exploited in musical instruments? In this Very Short Introduction Mike Goldsmith looks at the science of sound and explores sound in different contexts, covering the audible and inaudible, sound underground and underwater, accoustic and electric, and hearing in humans and animals. He also considers the problem of sound out of place - noise and its reduction. ABOUT THE SERIES: The Very Short Introductions series from Oxford University Press contains hundreds of titles in almost every subject area. These pocket-sized books are the perfect way to get ahead in a new subject quickly. Our expert authors combine facts, analysis, perspective, new ideas, and enthusiasm to make interesting and challenging topics highly readable.

Ethnomusicology: A Very Short Introduction


Author: Timothy Rice
Publisher: Oxford University Press
ISBN: 0199794375
Category: Music
Page: 151
View: 8741

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Ethnomusicology, an academic discipline founded in 1950, has been defined as the study of the music of others. This definition, at once whimsical and very nearly true, is incomplete. Many of its strongest threads have emerged because a person or a people have wanted to understand themselves, their history, and their identity.

Organizations: A Very Short Introduction


Author: Mary Jo Hatch
Publisher: OUP Oxford
ISBN: 019161498X
Category: Social Science
Page: 176
View: 3947

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Most of us recognize that organizations are everywhere. You meet them on every street corner in the form of families and shops, study in them, work for them, buy from them, pay taxes to them. But have you given much thought to where they came from, what they are today, and what they might become in the future? How and why do they have so much influence over us, and what influences them? How do they contribute to and detract from the meaningfulness of lives, and how might we improve them so they better serve our needs and desires? This Very Short Introductions addresses all of these questions and considers many more. Mary Jo Hatch introduces the concept of organizations by presenting definitions and ideas drawn from the a variety of subject areas including the physical sciences, economics, sociology, psychology, anthropology, literature, and the visual and performing arts. Drawing on examples from prehistory and everyday life, from the animal kingdom as well as from business, government, and other formal organizations, Hatch provides a lively and thought provoking introduction to the process of organization. ABOUT THE SERIES: The Very Short Introductions series from Oxford University Press contains hundreds of titles in almost every subject area. These pocket-sized books are the perfect way to get ahead in a new subject quickly. Our expert authors combine facts, analysis, perspective, new ideas, and enthusiasm to make interesting and challenging topics highly readable.

Sexual Selection: A Very Short Introduction


Author: Marlene Zuk,Leigh W. Simmons
Publisher: Oxford University Press
ISBN: 0191084417
Category: Science
Page: 144
View: 5265

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What is responsible for the differences between the sexes in so many animals, from the brilliant plumage of birds of paradise to the antlers on deer? And why are the traits that distinguish the sexes sometimes apparently detrimental to survival? Even when they look more or less alike, why do males and females sometimes behave differently? Questions like these have intrigued scientists and the public alike for many years, and new discoveries are showing us both how wildly variable the natural world is, and how some basic principles can help explain much of that variation. Like natural selection, sexual selection is a process that results from differential representation of genes in successive generations. Under sexual selection, however, the crucial characteristics that determine whether an individual reproduces depend on sexual competition, rather than survival ability. This Very Short Introduction considers the history of our understanding of sexual selection, from Darwin's key insights to the modern day. Considering the investment animals place on reproduction, variation in mating systems, sexual conflict, and the origin of sexual dimorphism, Marlene Zuk and Leigh Simmons discuss questions such as whether females can really choose between males on aesthetic grounds, and how sexual conflict is resolved in different species. They conclude with a consideration of the thorny question of how, and even if, sexual selection theory applies to humans. ABOUT THE SERIES: The Very Short Introductions series from Oxford University Press contains hundreds of titles in almost every subject area. These pocket-sized books are the perfect way to get ahead in a new subject quickly. Our expert authors combine facts, analysis, perspective, new ideas, and enthusiasm to make interesting and challenging topics highly readable.