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Reading the rocks : the autobiography of the earth  Cover Image Book Book

Reading the rocks : the autobiography of the earth / Marcia Bjornerud.

Bjornerud, Marcia. (Author).


This armchair guide to the making of the geologic record shows how to understand messages written in stone. To many of us, the Earth's crust is a relic of ancient, unknowable history--but to a geologist, stones are richly illustrated narratives, telling gothic tales of cataclysm and reincarnation. For more than four billion years, in beach sand, granite, and garnet schists, the planet has kept a rich and idiosyncratic journal of its past. Fulbright Scholar Bjornerud takes the reader along on an eye-opening tour of Deep Time, explaining what we see and feel beneath our feet. Both scientist and storyteller, Bjornerud uses anecdotes and metaphors to remind us that our home is a living thing with lessons to teach. She shows how our planet has long maintained a delicate balance, and how the global give-and-take has sustained life on Earth through numerous upheavals.--From publisher description.

Record details

  • ISBN: 081334249X (hardcover : alk. paper)
  • ISBN: 9780813342498 (hardcover : alk. paper)
  • Physical Description: x, 237 p. ; 22 cm.
  • Publisher: Cambridge, MA : Westview Press, a member of the Perseus Books Group, c2005.

Content descriptions

Bibliography, etc. Note:
Includes bibliographical references (p. 213-226) and index.
Formatted Contents Note:
Acknowledgments -- Prologue : Stone Crazy. No place with no past -- The accidental diarist -- The Tao of Earth. The department of redundancy department, Inertia and spare parts -- Equals and opposites -- Going home to Mother Earth -- Everything old is new again -- The Earth fugue -- Reading rocks: a primer. Meeting rocks on common ground -- A rock by any other name -- Grammar and syntax of the three rock languages -- Mind the gap, what rocks don't tell us -- Putting everything in order -- Getting a date -- Peering into the primordial mists -- The great and the small. Geo-metry: Sizing up the Earth -- A sense of scale -- The importance of being erroneous -- Making retroactive measurements -- Tiny bubbles -- Stretchy coastlines and imperial microbes -- Lawmakers or outlaws? -- Measure for measure -- Mixing and sorting. Stars of rock and heavy metal -- Density is destiny -- Whither the water -- Mixed drinks and metaphors -- The mantle of power -- Waste management -- Mal de mer -- Only connect -- Innovation and conservation. You say you want a revolution -- The paradox of oxygen -- Coming out of the cold -- Swimming with the (not-yet-evolved) sharks -- An arthropod eat arthropod world -- The many legs of the arms race -- Communes and junkyards -- Something old, something new, everything borrowed -- Strength and weakness. Earth before geology -- Naming names and making maps -- A mechanical Earth -- The incredible shrinking Earth -- Earth unbound -- Epilogue: The once and future Earth -- Glossary -- Notes -- Index.
Subject: Geology.

Available copies

  • 1 of 1 copy available at Kirtland Community College.


  • 0 current holds with 1 total copy.
Show Only Available Copies
Location Call Number / Copy Notes Barcode Shelving Location Status Due Date
Kirtland Community College Library QE 31 .B524 2005 30534426 General Collection Available -

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