THE REAL ORIGIN OF OUR SPECIES: a myth-busting, eye-opening landmark account of how humans evolved, offering a paradigm shift in our thinking about what the female body is, how it came to be, and how this evolution still shapes all our lives today
“A page-turning whistle-stop tour of mammalian development that begins in the Jurassic Era, Eve recasts the traditional story of evolutionary biology by placing women at its center…. The book is engaging, playful, erudite, discursive and rich with detail." —Sarah Lyall, The New York Times
“A smart, funny, scientific deep-dive into the power of a woman’s body, Eve surprises, educates, and emboldens.” —Bonnie Garmus, #1 New York Times best-selling author of Lessons in Chemistry
How did the female body drive 200 million years of human evolution? • Why do women live longer than men? • Why are women more likely to get Alzheimer’s? • Why do girls score better at every academic subject than boys until puberty, when suddenly their scores plummet? • Is sexism useful for evolution? • And why, seriously why, do women have to sweat through our sheets every night when we hit menopause?
These questions are producing some truly exciting science – and in Eve, with boundless curiosity and sharp wit, Cat Bohannon covers the past 200 million years to explain the specific science behind the development of the female sex: “We need a kind of user's manual for the female mammal. A no-nonsense, hard-hitting, seriously researched (but readable) account of what we are. How female bodies evolved, how they work, what it really means to biologically be a woman. Something that would rewrite the story of womanhood. This book is that story. We have to put the female body in the picture. If we don't, it's not just feminism that's compromised. Modern medicine, neurobiology, paleoanthropology, even evolutionary biology all take a hit when we ignore the fact that half of us have breasts. So it's time we talk about breasts. Breasts, and blood, and fat, and vaginas, and wombs—all of it. How they came to be and how we live with them now, no matter how weird or hilarious the truth is.”
Eve is not only a sweeping revision of human history, it’s an urgent and necessary corrective for a world that has focused primarily on the male body for far too long. Picking up where Sapiens left off, Eve will completely change what you think you know about evolution and why Homo sapiens has become such a successful and dominant species.
About the Author
CAT BOHANNON is a researcher and author with a Ph.D. from Columbia University in the evolution of narrative and cognition. Her essays and poems have appeared in Scientific American, Mind, Science Magazine, The Best American Nonrequired Reading, The Georgia Review, The Story Collider, and Poets Against the War. She lives with her family in Seattle.
"For over a century and a half since Darwin, we have talked about the origin of man. But what about women? Marshaling considerable wit, scholarship, and cutting edge science Cat Bohannon traces the history and importance of female biology and, in the process, gives us a refreshing new view on the origin of humanity." —Neil Shubin, University of Chicago biologist and author of Your Inner Fish
"Eve was immeasurably useful to me in my life-long quest to understand my own body. I highly recommend it to anyone who is on the same journey." —Hope Jahren, best-selling author of Lab Girl and Story of More "This book is almost fantastically interesting. Every few pages there would be some fact I didn't know or an idea that was new to me, and I would ask my wife if she knew, and she’d say, “What? You’re kidding! No!” and we'd end up talking for half an hour, and it would be midnight, and I'd only read 8 pages. So this book took a LONG time to read, but for the best possible reasons. Frankly, I’m writing this while I’m still on page 387, where Cat Bohannon talks about why sex feels good. I definitely plan to finish." —Charles Mann, best-selling author of 1491
"A smart, funny, scientific deep-dive into the power of a woman’s body, Eve surprises, educates, and emboldens. Who runs the world? Girls!" —Bonnie Garmus, #1 New York Times best-selling author of Lessons in Chemistry
"A capacious investigation of women throughout time....Bohannon...creates a jaunty, digressive, and often whimsical tale examining the origins of some defining features of womanhood....Fascinating...Prodigious research informs a spirited history of humanity." —Kirkus Reviews (starred)
"Bohannon offers a bracing corrective to male-centric evolutionary accounts. She balances scientific rigor with entertaining prose....It’s an illuminating and fresh take on how human evolution unfolded." —Publishers Weekly