Ed Yong, CLSC Author, I Contain Multitudes: The Microbes Within Us and a Grander View of Life

Thursday, July 06, 2017

Location Hall of Philosophy

Gate pass required. Purchase at our Main Gate Welcome Center; (716) 357-6250

A groundbreaking, wondrously informative and vastly entertaining examination of the most significant revolution in biology since Darwin, I Contain Multitudes presents a “microbe’s-eye view” of the world that reveals a marvelous, radically reconceived picture of life on earth.

Every animal, whether human, squid or wasp, is home to millions of bacteria and other microbes. Ed Yong prompts us to look at ourselves and our animal companions in a new light — less as individuals and more as the interconnected, interdependent multitudes we assuredly are. The microbes in our bodies are part of our immune systems; in the deep oceans, mysterious creatures without mouths or guts depend on microbes for all their energy; and bacteria provide squid with invisibility cloaks, help beetles to bring down forests and allow worms to cause diseases that afflict millions of people.

Many people think of microbes as germs to be eradicated, but those that live with us — the microbiome — build our bodies, protect our health and shape our identities. Yong takes the reader on a grand tour through our microbial partners, changing both our view of nature and our sense of where we belong in it.

Ed Yong is an award-winning science writer who reports for The Atlantic and whose blog, “Not Exactly Rocket Science” is published as part of the National Geographic blog network. His writing has appeared in Nature, Scientific American, Slate, The Guardian, The New Yorker and The New York Times. For his work, Yong has received the National Academies Communication Award from the National Academy of Sciences; the National Union of Journalist’s Stephen White Award; and the Best Science Blog from the Association of British Science Writers for “Not Exactly Rocket Science.”