A DEEP HISTORY OF MODERN HUMANS – FROM THE BIG BANG TO AN UNCERTAIN FUTURE

Human Origins

How the Big Bang propelled the Universe from nothing to everything through deep time • How Earth and our solar system formed • The origins of life on our young planet • Our deep, shared ancestry with all life • A brief summary of the evolution of life on Earth from the simplest bacteria to our ape family • The latest evidence of the evolution of our lineage from fossil bones and stone tool artefacts, ancient DNA and past climates and landscapes • The timing, the places and the reasons for past events leading to our evolution • The global expansion and contraction of populations divided by climatic and physical barriers • The role of high-calorie foods (meat and seafood), fire and climate in the evolution of a large brain • The possible origin of Homo sapiens along South Africa's southern coastal region • From hunter-gatherers to farmers and the establishment of early civilisations • Projection of recent trends into an uncertain future

Human Origins

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Who is John S. Compton?

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Available in multiple formats

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384 pages • Softcover • 240mm x 168mm • Varnished paper • More than 200 diagrams, images and photographs • 140,000 words • ISBN 978-0-620-69605-0 • Earthspun Books • March 2017

FROM A SINGULARITY ...

Human Origins opens to us the 'big history' shaping the Universe's violent arc through deep geological time. Earth Scientist John S. Compton integrates the latest advances from disciplines as diverse as archaeology, climatology and genetics to weave a rigorously scientific but compelling and accessible narrative stretching from the Big Bang to a planet supporting more than seven billion humans facing an uncertain future.

... TO HUMANITY

Unlike most popular science publications, Human Origins is the work of a writer as much as it is an integrated overview of 'everything' – painstakingly crafted by a scientist. Focusing on the last million years and the origins of our and other hominids' evolutionary responses to fast-changing geological and climatic evironments, John S. Compton's prose displays surefooted elegance as it steps lightly across the complex tapestry of time to leave large, indelible footprints on its readers' minds. Tracing our deep history through the latest, most up-to-date research in many fields of scientific endeavour, Human Origins is an immensely rewarding read for laypeople and an invigorating reference for scholars.

BY JOHN S. COMPTON

John S. Compton is an associate professor in the Department of Geological Sciences at the University of Cape Town (UCT). He received a PhD in Earth Sciences from Harvard University in 1986 and taught marine geology at the University of South Florida until 1996 before moving to UCT. John has published more than 50 papers and, in 2004, authored the popular "The Rocks and Mountains of Cape Town", a user-friendly guide to the geology of much of the Cape Floral Region Protected Areas World Heritage Site.

MULTIPLE FORMATS

Human Origins will be published in March 2017 in multiple formats.

HOW TO ORDER

Order your copy of Human Origins directly from the secure Gumroad site for $19.95 or ZAR299.00 (excluding shipping from local suppliers). You will be charged only when the book is delivered to you.

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JOURNEY THROUGH GEOLOGICAL TIME

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Abiotic to Animal World

"Placing human evolution within the context of the remote and distant past underscores just how recent our arrival is and, more importantly, that our arrival depended on all those who came before us."

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Endless forms most beautiful

"Our descent can be traced from the earliest ribbon-like creatures having a notochord to the many different types of fish ... who ventured onto land and would eventually evolve into reptiles and mammals."

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Breaking Human

"Although perhaps as many as 4 to 5 species in our lineage ... managed to live until fairly recently, we Homo sapiens are the only member of our lineage still standing today."

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