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Baas Becking's: Geobiology : Or Introduction to Environmental Science (Hardcover) (Dr. L.G.M. Bass
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I believe that the time is ripe for the presentation of an English version of this classic book. Baas Becking provided the original name “Geobiologie” and stands with Vladimir Vernadsky as one of the true pioneers in this field. While most geobiologists would be aware that Baas Becking wrote a seminal book originally defining the field, and they may even be aware of his most famous quote "everything is everywhere, but the environment selects", few would have any knowledge of the book's content. This is because the original version was written in Dutch, and because, as far as I am aware, there was only a single 1934 printing, so the book is rather rare. A translation of this book would stand as an important historical document and would help all practicing geobiologists to place their work within the historical context of the emergence of the field.
I believe that such a volume would be popular among practicing geobiologists at all levels, and beyond, I would expect that the book would have broad appeal to microbial ecologists, limnologists, oceanographers, geologists, naturalists, as well as to historians of science.
To broaden the appeal, and to place the book within the modern context, I would suggest that each chapter contains a short introduction. This introduction will outline the main points presented within the chapter and offer some modern insights and updates were relevant. I believe that these introductions should be short as to not distract from the main text. In other words, they would not be complete reviews of the field, but mainly help to place Bass Beckings ideas within a modern context. The text could also include some footnotes and annotations for further explanations and clarifications where required. As for the introductions, I could probably handle these myself. If not, I would solicit some expertise.Don Canfield