BEYOND EARTH: The Search for Extraterrestrial Life by Roy A. Gallant

BEYOND EARTH: The Search for Extraterrestrial Life

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Gallant's search begins with Babylonian creation myths and Von Daniken's suggestion that ancient gods were really visitors from space, and before dealing with the actual space search he goes back to Greek and Roman science to trace the history of early astronomy. He reviews the life cycles of stars and what they're made of, then considers how life evolved on earth and its chances for existence on other planets. There are even excerpts from two science-fiction quests of the 1930s before Gallant gets down to necessary conditions for habitability, our recent attempts to listen to the universe with radio telescopes, and the messages of project Ozma and Sagan's ""cosmic greeting card."" None of this quite leads to Gallant's optimistic concluding sentence--""one day we will receive the reply we long for""--but it does consider the various topics that bear on the question, providing deeper background than Knight's similar (and admirably lucid) Eavesdropping on Space (1975).

Pub Date: Oct. 17th, 1977
Publisher: Four Winds