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The Big Picture On the Origins of Life, Meaning, and the Universe Itself by Sean Carroll

The Big Picture On the Origins of Life, Meaning, and the Universe Itself

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A synthesis of cosmos-sprawling science and the most profound questions about life, death and our place in it all, The Big Picture is the ultimate guide to the scientific revolution that has taken us from Darwin and Einstein to the origins of life, consciousness and the universe. Carroll demonstrates that while our lives may forever be dwarfed by the immensity of the universe, they can be redeemed by our capacity to comprehend it and give it meaning.

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The Big Picture On the Origins of Life, Meaning, and the Universe Itself by Sean Carroll

Over the last few hundred years an avalanche of discoveries have changed our world dramatically, having a profound effect on what we think really matters. Now, in his most ambitious book yet, Sean Carroll breaks down how the universe works at the quantum, cosmic and human levels to reveal how our everyday lives connect to the underlying laws of nature.


'Language philosophy, quantum mechanics, general relativity - they're all in The Big Picture. Sean Carroll is a fantastically erudite and entertaining writer.'
Elizabeth Kolbert, author of New York Times bestseller The Sixth Extinction

'Carroll beautifully articulates the world view suggested by contemporary naturalism. Thorny issues like free will, the direction of time, and the source of morality are clarified with elegance and insight... This is a book that should be read by everybody.'
Carlo Rovelli, author of Seven Brief Lessons on Physics

'Weaving the threads of astronomy, physics, chemistry, biology, and philosphy into a seamless narrative tapestry, Sean Carroll enthralls us with what we've figured out in the universe and humbles us with what we don't yet understand. Yet in the end, it's the meaning of it all that feeds your soul of curiosity.'
Neil deGrasse Tyson, host of Cosmos: A Spacetime Odyssey

'Never hectoring, always tolerant, the author presents a seductively attractive picture of a universe whose ultimate laws lie within our grasp... [Carroll] gives us a highly enjoyable and lucid tour through a wide range of topics... even if you don't agree with what he says, you are unlikely to be enraged by such an urbane and engaging lecturer; more likely, you will be enthralled.'
Wall Street Journal

'A tour de force that offers a comprehensive snapshot of the human situation in our infinitely strange universe, and it does this with highly accessible language and engaging storytelling.'

'Carroll's new book reveals how physicists quest to better understand the fundamental laws of nature has led to astonishing insights into life, the universe, and everything.' Sabine Hossenfelder, Frankfurt Institute for Advanced Studies

About the Author

Sean Carroll is a theoretical physicist at the California Institute of Technology. In addition to the Royal Society Winton Prize, he has been awarded prizes and fellowships from the National Science Foundation, NASA, the American Physical Society and the American Institute of Physics. He lives in Los Angeles.

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Book Info

Publication date

1st September 2016


Sean Carroll

More books by Sean Carroll
Author 'Like for Like'


Oneworld Publications


480 pages


Popular Science
The Real World

Popular science



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