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[db@press.uchicago.edu: The Last Dinosaur Book]

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Message text written by INTERNET:mrowe@indiana.edu

"We've already seen some of Jeff Hecht's take on the book described
below (that can be seen again at:


if you've forgotten).  I have not seen the book myself, so I can't
tell you anything else, but the enclosed message was sent to me by Mr.
Blobaum and I forward it now for those that might have an interest."

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        I'm making my way through the book now...and I must admit I'm very
disappointed with it!  Far from being a look at how and why dinosaurs
fascinate people in our (and a few other) culture(s), it's one of those
pseudo-erudite, pseudo-analytical, psychobabble-ridden uses of cultural
anthropological jargon, seeking (and finding, of course) hidden meanings in
numerous places, most of which probably really _don't_ have any meaning. 
Beyond that, the author gets many things flatly wrong about dinosaurs, and
in a few cases, simply ignores proper information when given it (he spells
it out, but then ignores it in favor of his own idea -- for example, he
uses "dinosaur" to include pterosaurs, plesiosaurs, pelycosaurs, various
fossil mammals, etc., because that's how the public uses it).  At one
point, he mentions having had at least one talk with Paul Sereno (they're
both at U Chicago), but he doesn't seem to have taken any facts home with
him.  8-C

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                     Jerry D. Harris
                 Fossil Preparation Lab
          New Mexico Museum of Natural History
                   1801 Mountain Rd NW
               Albuquerque  NM  87104-1375
                 Phone:  (505) 899-2809
                  Fax:  (505) 841-2866