Charles Darwin and His Legacy

“From so simple a beginning endless forms most beautiful and most wonderful have been, and are being evolved.” – Ending words of the Origin of Species. 

the-origin-of-speciesCharles Darwin–my favorite great naturalist who has shaped the view of the natural word through his awe inspiring book The Origin of Species–has described himself as a ‘very naughty boy’ during his young days in his autobiography, released after his death. He had a big family, with six brothers and sisters and was stuck in the middle of it, being the fourth child in the family. Darwin’s hobby involved collecting things and getting into them, which frustrates his father and his older sisters who were in charge of looking after him.

Childhood aside, he described the path of his career to be very confusing. His father wanted him to continue the family business and become a physician. He obeyed, describing that the practice was extremely boring. He found it dull. Later he mentioned that becoming a physician was completely useless for his future as a naturalist. After two years in Edinburgh university, he stopped the physician degree under the agreement of his father. He them was set on the path to be a clergymen, which he dropped soon after.

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The Seven Good Years by Etgar Keret

the seven good yearRemember the short story collection review I did a long time ago: The Bus Driver who Wanted to be God, by Etgar Keret. He is also the author of the book I’m going to review next. It’s a collection of his own life stories with an ironic end to it. He talked about everything. From love, to the bible and to his childhood twisted fantasies; from musings on aging, airlines, the writing life, and to humanities general oddness. I never get tired of rereading the story over and over again in my spare time.

The Seven Good Years is a an autobiography written over a coarse of seven year. Everything is just Keret’s short thought, his quick mind at the moment which he recorded. In a certain sense, it would more accurately be described as a series of very short essays.The story started at the time when his son was born, which was happened at the hospital, a little bit after bombing attack. Keret was mistaken as a bomb victim by an apparently very pesky journalist who was kicked out of the hospital at least three times. As his son was born, he wrote his fears about how his son could grow up in the future: a self hating Jew or a drug dealer? I wonder what his son would say when he reads his dad’s memoir  when he grows older.  I think it’s something along this line: ‘Dad! What exactly were you thinking when you wrote this?’

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