Verlegt von
Viking (2014-10-09)
Society & Social Sciences


How DNA and History Shape Our Identities and Our Futures

by Kenneally, Christine

The Invisible History of the Human Race is a deeply researched, carefully crafted and provocative perspective on how our stories, psychology, and genetics affect our past and our future.

We are doomed to repeat history if we fail to learn from it, but how are we affected by the forces that are invisible to us?

In The Invisible History of the Human Race Christine Kenneally draws on cutting-edge research to reveal how both historical artifacts and DNA tell us where we come from and where we may be going. While some books explore our genetic inheritance and popular television shows celebrate ancestry, this is the first book to explore how everything from DNA to emotions to names and the stories that form our lives are all part of our human legacy.

Kenneally shows how trust is inherited in Africa, silence is passed down in Tasmania, and how the history of nations is written in our DNA. From fateful, ancient encounters to modern mass migrations and medical diagnoses, Kenneally explains how the forces that shaped the history of the world ultimately shape each human who inhabits it.

Christine Kenneally is an award-winning journalist and author who has written for The New Yorker, The New York Times, Slate, Time magazine, New Scientist, The Monthly, and other publications. She is the author of The First Word: The Search for the Origins of Language, which was a finalist for the Los Angeles Times Book Award. She was born and raised in Melbourne, Australia, and lives in New York City.

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Christine Kenneally’s brilliant, ambitious work integrates cutting-edge genetics with a deeply humanistic perspective on our personal and communal past. Transcending the usual intellectual silos, she shows how historical events became inscribed in DNA and how our ancestry casts riveting shadows onto the future. This wholly original book will change how you view your parents, your children, and your own messy, mosaic self.

Quote: Amanda Schaffer

What a remarkable tour of the thousands of ways the past shapes who we are. Christine Kenneally covers everything from Tasmanian convict records to the absurdly complex genetics of height. By the end, you’ll have changed the way you think about identity, your name, and all those double helixes in your cells.

Quote: AJ Jacobs

a bold and absorbing work’; ‘beautifully written.

Review: The Weekend Australian

Christine Kenneally writes in this engrossing new book, genealogy’s boom gives us “historical transparency” as never before.

Review: Science Times

Australia & New Zealand: Black Inc., Italy: Mondadori

Quote: Publisher

Magnificently rich and sweeping in scope, in impeccable yet intimate prose.

Quote: Cordelia Fine

A lively, informative mix of genealogy and genetics.

Review: Kirkus

A sprawling, entertaining look at genetics and genealogy.

Review: Boston Globe

Christine Kenneally’s sensational book belongs in the backpack of anyone who wants to explore his or her family’s past. Crisply written and packed with myriad fresh facts and rights, The Invisible History will make the journey down the genealogical trail a lot richer and more meaningful.

Quote: Sylvia Nasar

Christine was also interviewed on WNYC’s “The Leonard Lopate Show” for a double segment.

Quote: WNYC

The construction of identity is the concern at the heart of this original and provocative book, which employs the approaches of psychology, sociology, philosophy, and Mendelian genetics.

Review: The New Yorker

Smart, splendid, highly entertaining - The breadth of this book; its abundance of enthralling accounts and astonishing science; its adept, vivid writing; and Kenneally’s exquisite calibrated judgment make it the richest, freshest, most fun book on genetics in some time.

Review: New York Times Book Review

Christine Kenneally’s interview on MSNCB’s “Morning Joe”

Quote: MSNCB

A complex, powerful, and engaging narrative… Kenneally offers a rich, thoughtful blend of science, social science, and philosophy in a manner that mixes personal history with the history of the human species.

Review: Publishers Weekly (starred)

Christine Kenneally vividly traces the astonishing 21st century progress in the science of who we are. And she never loses sight of the human stories we tell about our heredity and history, which constitute us just as much as bits and genes do.

Quote: Jordan Ellenberg

The word “brilliant” gets thrown around a lot, but it should be saved for Christine Kenneally and her book The Invisible History of the Human Race. Transcending the nature-nurture dichotomy, Kenneally shows us how our societies and our selves got to be the way they are. Don’t read this book looking for neat answers—gaze instead through a glorious kaleidoscope of science, psychology, history and first-class storytelling.

Quote: Susan Cain, New York Times bestselling author of QUIET

In the current fad for omnibus histories of absolutely everything, no one has succeeded in quite the way Christine Kenneally has. She approaches her task with a very specific enquiry: what is the interplay between genetics and human history? Searching for an answer, she uncovers worlds within worlds.

Review: Australian Book Review

Christine Kenneally’s THE INVISIBLE HISTORY OF THE HUMAN RACE has been shortlisted for the prestigious Stella Prize!

Quote: Stella Prize shortlist

Kenneally has a gift for explanatory journalism.

Review: Newsday

THE INVISIBLE HISTORY OF THE HUMAN RACE has been chosen as a New York Times “Notable Book” for 2014! “Kenneally takes a smart and highly entertaining look at the revelations DNA can provide.”

Quote: New York Times

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