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Leonardo's Foot

How 10 Toes, 52 Bones, and 66 Muscles Shaped the Human World

By Carol Ann Rinzler

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Format: Paperback, 192 pages
Other Information: Illustrated
Published In: United States, 01 May 2013
A Selection of the Scientific American, History, and BOMC2 Book Clubs "An in-depth look at the anatomy and history of feet reveals their often overlooked importance in human evolution, medicine and art." --Science News "Stylish, informative, entertaining, and pleasantly personal ...Whether Rinzler is exploring how our feet explain or illuminate such topics as evolution, disability, racism, diet, or desire, she maintains a fascinating perspective on the peculiarities of being human." --Rain Taxi Review of Books "This neat little book draws a clear picture of our feet, providing understanding that extends far beyond the obvious. Readers often like to walk away from a book feeling they learned something--that the author left them with a new way to look at an old idea, and this book fulfills that need." --City Book Review "Rinzler lifts the lowly human foot to new heights in this appealing book." --Booklist (starred review) Leonardo's Foot stretches back to the fossil record and forward to recent discoveries in evolutionary science to demonstrate that it was our feet rather than our brains that first distinguished us from other species within the animal kingdom. Taking inspiration from Leonardo da Vinci's statement that "the human foot is a masterpiece of engineering and a work of art," Carol Ann Rinzler leads us on a fascinating stroll through science, medicine, and culture to shed light on the role our feet have played in the evolution of civilization. Whether discussing the ideal human form in classical antiquity, the impressive depth of the arching soles on the figures in Sandro Botticelli's Birth of Venus, an array of foot maladies and how they have affected luminaries from Lord Byron to Benjamin Franklin, or delving into the history of foot fetishism, Rinzler has created a wonderfully diverse catalog of details on our lowest extremities. This is popular science writing at its most entertaining--page after page of fascinating facts, based around the playful notion that appreciating this often overlooked part of our body is essential to understanding what it is to be human. Carol Ann Rinzler, a former nutrition columnist for the New York Daily News, has contributed to a number of publications, including the New York Times. She is the author of more than twenty books on health and medicine, including Nutrition for Dummies, an international bestseller translated into fourteen languages.

From the Author

"An in-depth look at the anatomy and history of feet reveals their often overlooked importance in human evolution, medicine and art." --Science News "Stylish, informative, entertaining, and pleasantly personal . . . Whether Rinzler is exploring how our feet explain or illuminate such topics as evolution, disability, racism, diet, or desire, she maintains a fascinating perspective on the peculiarities of being human." --Rain Taxi Review of Books "This neat little book draws a clear picture of our feet, providing understanding that extends far beyond the obvious. Readers often like to walk away from a book feeling they learned something--that the author left them with a new way to look at an old idea, and this book fulfills that need." City Book Review/San Francisco & Sacramento (five stars) "Rinzler lifts the lowly human foot to new heights in this appealing book." --Booklist (starred review) --------------------- From the Author I had just published the 5th edition of Nutrition for Dummies and was looking about for my next project. I started the search for a subject (a moment all writers anticipate with both pleasure and dread)... and then I thought about the foot--inelegant, overlooked, underreported and completely indispensable (it turns out) to our climb out of the caves into modern civilization. While it is common to credit our progress to the evolution of our increasingly more complex brain, in fact, we stood straight before we began to think straight, and our two feet have influenced our language, our politics, our religion, our legislation and, of course, our medicine. Who could resist such a mix? Ordinarily when I write I sit surrounded by medical books, including almost every single one of the Merck Manuals (I have collected all but two Manuals and all the Indexes). This time I had Dickens novels, the Bible, dictionaries in various languages, histories of the Roman Empire and the Nazi era, anthropology texts--and, yes, medical books. It was like being let loose in the biggest best toy store in the world.

Table of Contents

1. Destiny2. Defect3. Difference4. Diet5. DesireAppendix: Pais, ped, and pod

Promotional Information

Co-op availableSignificant galley printing. ARCs distributed at ALA Midwinter.National morning show TV campaignPublic and commercial radio broadcast campaign, including RTIR advertisingNational print and online campaigns targeting all major newspapers; women's magazines(O, The Oprah Magazine, Elle, etc.); fitness magazines (Runner's World, Running Times); science magazines (Science, Discover, etc.); culture magazines (New Yorker, Atlantic); health and literary blogs; and popular web sites such as Salon and Slate. [Note: the author is frequently quoted in magazines such as Self regarding food and nutrition]Publication date coincides with Barefoot Month (June 2013)Simultaneous eBook publication and promotionAuthor tour: New York, NY Possible serial excerpt in Discover magazine Possible promotion through the Scientific American and BOMC2 book clubs; Patagonia catalog Reading group guide development and book club outreachAcademic marketing plans include Consortium subject catalog and Required Reading newsletter advertising and FYE/ Common Book program outreachGiveaways through Goodreads and Library ThingPromotion through BLP's social media networks and www.blpress.org Blurbs likely from Jane Brody, U.S. Rep. Carolyn Maloney and Assemblyman Richard Gottfried, chair of the NYS Assembly Health Committee; blurbs solicited from Gina Kolata and Natalie AngrierMarketing and publicity efforts supported by Molly Mikolowski of A Literary Light

About the Author

Carol Ann Rinzler, a former nutrition columnist for the New York Daily News, has contributed to a number of publications, including the New York Times. She is the author of more than twenty books on health and medicine, including Nutrition for Dummies, an international bestseller translated into fourteen languages.

Reviews

A Selection of the Scientific American, History, and BOMC2 Book Clubs "An in-depth look at the anatomy and history of feet reveals their often overlooked importance in human evolution, medicine and art." --Science News "Stylish, informative, entertaining, and pleasantly personal ... Whether Rinzler is exploring how our feet explain or illuminate such topics as evolution, disability, racism, diet, or desire, she maintains a fascinating perspective on the peculiarities of being human." --Rain Taxi Review of Books "This neat little book draws a clear picture of our feet, providing understanding that extends far beyond the obvious. Readers often like to walk away from a book feeling they learned something--that the author left them with a new way to look at an old idea, and this book fulfills that need." --City Book Review "Rinzler lifts the lowly human foot to new heights in this appealing book." --Booklist (starred review) "Carol Ann Rinzler has written a surprising and delightful book about this 'underwhelming, underreported, and completely indispensable' part of the human body. It's amazing what you'll learn!" --RICHARD N. GOTTFRIED, Chair, New York State Assembly Health Committee "Carol Ann Rinzler weaves together material from art, literature, science, and history to broaden our understanding of the human foot. Her book is by turns entertaining, enlightening, and altogether satisfying." --Congresswoman CAROLYN B. MALONEY "Among the many pleasures of this book are the intriguing subject, Carol Ann Rinzler's lively and accessible writing style, and the amazing array of information she has gathered from so many different fields ... Who knew that the story of our own feet could be so fascinating?" --SANDRA OPDYCKE, author of No One Was Turned Away and Jane Addams and Her Vision for America "This book will amaze you as it walks you through evolution, history, mythology, and a good dose of anatomy, to enlighten you about the role of the Humble Human Foot in bringing human beings to where we are today. Thoroughly enjoyable, informative, and well written, it is a must read for anyone involved in caring for our lower extremity--or interested in our evolution. In short, you will never view the foot the same way again." --GARY STONES, DPM, President, New York State Podiatric Medical Association

EAN: 9781934137628
ISBN: 1934137626
Publisher: Bellevue Literary Press
Dimensions: 22.61 x 15.24 x 1.52 centimetres (0.29 kg)
Age Range: 15+ years
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