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From the author of the Pulitzer Prize-winning The Beak of the Finch, the riveting story of a biologist’s search for the foundations of behavior. Looking over the shoulder of some of the premier scientists in the filed, Jonathan Weiner takes us into their laboratories to show us how pieces of DNA actually shape behavior. He focuses on the work of Seymour Benzer, who, decades ago, with James Watson and Francis Crick, helped to crack the genetic code. Then, in a simple experiment using a few test tubes, a light bulb, and 100 fruit flies, Benzer invented the genetic dissection of behavior. Now we see how he and his students find and study genes that build our inner clocks, genes that shape the way we love, and genes that decide what we can (or cannot) remember. These breakthroughs help explain secrets of human behavior and may lead to advance treatments for behavioral disorders ranging from rage to autism to schizophrenia. In a narrative that sweeps from the first years of the century to the present, Weiner makes the process of scientific discovery and understanding almost tangible on the page. Time, Love, Memory is a brilliant work of scientific reportage.
“Stellar. . . . Weiner’s compelling portrait tells how [Seymour Benzer] and his fruit flies bestow on the most scientifically signfiant legacies of the century.” —Science News
“Time, Love, Memory is a beautifully written book that seamlessly weaves together science, history, and personalities.” —Scientific American
“Superlative. . . . Weiner has a rare gift for the poetry of experiment. With sparkle and considerable intelligence, he deftly reanimates the husk of technical discourse with the passion, prejudices and emotional outbursts that make scientific research such a fundamentally human enterprise.” —the Los Angeles Times
“Fascinating.... [A] compelling account of the origins of a scientific revolution [and] a poignant sketch of the scientist-as-artist.” —Newsday
“Weiner shines his formidable science-reporting light indoors....There is no better fly on the wall.” —The Philadelphia Inquirer