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SALK, Jonas.

The Survival of the Wisest.

New York, Harper & Row, 1973 Stock Code: 132946
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First edition, first printing, inscribed by the author on the front free endpaper, "For Gilbert Fitzhugh - with hope - Jonas Salk". The identity of the recipient is unknown, though one possibility is the retired chairman of the board of Metropolitan Life Insurance Company, Gilbert W. Fitzhugh (1911-1997), who in 1973 was living in San Diego, the location of the Salk Institute for Biological Studies. During the 1980s the then leader of Metropolitan Insurance, a successor to Fitzhugh, served on the Institute's board of trustees, which perhaps indicates a pre-existing connection between the two groups.
Famous for developing the first effective vaccine against polio, the American doctor Jonas Salk (1914-1995) published his first book, Man Unfolding, in 1972, in which he speculated upon the course of humanity's metabiological evolution. In The Survival of the Wisest, a speculative, philosophical work, Salk argues that "Man's ability to learn how to act wisely is critically important both for maintaining and improving the quality of human life and for survival on this planet" (dust jacket blurb). The work was published simultaneously in Canada by Fitzhery & Whiteside Limited.

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Octavo. Original black cloth, spine lettered in gilt, publisher's device to front board in gilt, blue endpapers. With the dust jacket.


Numerous diagrams to the text.


A fine copy, top edges of boards only very slightly sunned.


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