Family Treasures: A Study of the Inheritance of Normal Characteristics in Man

By David D. Whitney | Go to book overview

CHAPTER II
THE INDIVIDUAL

As one considers the make up of an individual person, one is amazed at the intricacy of the trillions of microscopic cells, various tissues, organs, and systems all working harmoniously together. Every part, to the smallest detail, seems to be arranged for efficiency in helping to maintain the whole as an active, self-sustaining, self-perpetuating, and highly organized mass of living material. How it is accomplished for several decades of years is still a deep mystery. But the purpose of its existence is still more baffling.

The Unity of the Body.--The individual acts as a whole and resembles a kind of living unit. Subjected to various kinds of environmental influences, it is able as a whole to adjust itself to them and to continue its activities. It grows, matures, produces new individuals like itself, gradually wastes away, and finally dies of old age. All of these phenomena occur in a very orderly manner, and seem to follow a definite course.

The body of the individual may be compared to a machine in that it can take into itself supplies of energy from the outside and transform them into other forms of energy which it uses for all of its activities. It surpasses a machine, however, in its ability to repair itself and to replace the worn out materials with new materials and thus continuously maintain itself.

Strange as it may seem, all human individuals are fun­ damentally alike. The form of the body, the number and the arrangement of the bones, the number of paired muscles, the various organs and systems, the position of the organs and their functioning, and the many other important parts

-30-

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Family Treasures: A Study of the Inheritance of Normal Characteristics in Man
Table of contents

Table of contents

  • Title Page 1
  • Contents 3
  • Preface 5
  • Chapter I- The Family 9
  • Chapter II- The Individual 30
  • Chapter III- Hair 48
  • Chapter IV- The Eyes 82
  • Chapter V- The Mouth 94
  • Chapter VI - The Ears 110
  • Chapter VII- The Nose, Cheeks, Chin, and Jaws 126
  • Chapter IX- The Feet 172
  • Chapter X- The Body 186
  • Chapter XI- Temperaments and Special Abilities 203
  • Chapter XII- Good Health 228
  • Chapter XIII- Birthmarks, Acquired Characters, and Disease 239
  • Chapter XIV- Sex 256
  • Chapter XV- Nature of Man 267
  • Glossary of Terms Commonly Used in the Study of Heredity in Man 288
  • Index 295
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