David Suzuki: The Autobiography

David Suzuki: The Autobiography

David Suzuki: The Autobiography

David Suzuki: The Autobiography

Synopsis

The first volume of David Suzuki's autobiography, Metamorphosis, looked back at his life from 1986, when he was 50. In this eagerly awaited second installment, Suzuki, now 70, reflects on his entire life and on his hopes for the future. The book begins with his life-changing encounters with racism while interned in a Canadian concentration camp during World War II and continues through his troubled teenage years and later successes as a scientist and host of PBS's The Nature of Things. With characteristic candor and passion, he describes his growing consciousness of the natural world and humankind's precarious place in it; his travels throughout the world and his meetings with international leaders, from Nelson Mandela to the Dalai Lama; and the abiding role of nature and family in his life. David Suzuki is an intimate and inspiring look at one of the most uncompromising people on the planet.

Excerpt

In 1986, the year I turned fifty, I had the temerity to write Metamorphosis: Stages in a Life. It was not intended as an autobiography but as a series of essays. My publisher encouraged me to supplement the pieces with more and more personal material, until the essays were reduced to three at the end of the book. To my astonishment and delight, people were interested in my experiences, and the book sold more copies than any other I have written. At the time, at the relatively young age of half a century, I didn’t feel I had matured enough to have a perspective on my life. Now, two decades later, I know I was still a child in maturity, and even now, looking in the mirror, I have difficulty reconciling the old man gazing back at me with the still-young person in the mind behind the face.

Although all people on Earth, as members of one species, share the same anatomy of the brain, the same chemistry of neurons, and similar sense organs, each of us “perceives” the world in a very personal way. We experience it through perceptual filters that are shaped by our individual genes and experiences, by our gender, ethnic group, religious background, socioeconomic status, and so on. Essentially, our brains “edit” the input from our sensory organs, “making sense” of it within . . .

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