The Superorganism

The Superorganism

The Beauty, Elegance, and Strangeness of Insect Societies

Book - 2009
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The Superorganism promises to be one of the most important scientific works published in this decade. Coming eighteen years after the publication of The Ants, this new volume expands our knowledge of the social insects (among them, ants, bees, wasps, and termites) and is based on remarkable research conducted mostly within the last two decades. These superorganisms--a tightly knit colony of individuals, formed by altruistic cooperation, complex communication, and division of labor--represent one of the basic stages of biological organization, midway between the organism and the entire species. The study of the superorganism, as the authors demonstrate, has led to important advances in our understanding of how the transitions between such levels have occurred in evolution and how life as a whole has progressed from simple to complex forms. Ultimately, this book provides a deep look into a part of the living world hitherto glimpsed by only a very few.
Publisher: New York : W.W. Norton, [2009]
Edition: First edition.
Copyright Date: ©2009
ISBN: 9780393067040
Branch Call Number: 595.71782 HOL
Characteristics: xxi, 522 pages : illustrations (some color) ; 27 cm
Additional Contributors: Nelson, Margaret C.
Wilson, Edward O.

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stewstealth
Sep 16, 2016

This book could probably be subtitled "The evolutionary basis for super-organisms" as this is the main thrust of the book. Additionally it is geared towards ants as this is the author's forte. That being said the book is informative. It is a scholarly look at the concept of the "super-organisms" as individual units with simple algorithms make a complex "intelligent" creature. Worth reading if you are interested.

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