I’ve had limited success with this query on Twitter, probably because not that many people were reading late last night when I posted this, but I can give a little more context here, so it’s worth repeating:
As part of something I’m working on but won’t talk about yet, I’m interested in learning something about the context in which Darwin wrote On the Origin of Species…. For that reason, I’m looking for a recommendation of a book about the book, as it were: ideally something fairly concise that talks about the antecedents of Darwin’s work. I’m sort of dimly aware that there were other people whose work fed into his, and how he arrived at his conclusions (which is why I think it would be useful for what I’m working on now), but I’d like to have a clearer picture of the whole thing.
I can and will read the actual book (which is cheaply available in electronic editions, yay for the public domain), but I’d like something about the scientific context in which it was produced. Ideally, as I said, this would be fairly concise, as I have limited time for reading these days, and it would be even better if it were recent enough to have an electronic edition (as I do most of my reading on a Nook or iPad these days). Failing that, I have access to a good academic library system, so obscurity is not a big factor.
Thanks in advance.