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Thursday, June 30th, 6:00—7:00pm
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Schwarzman AMC’s Book Club — Pump: A Natural History of the Heart by Bill Schutt

Schwarzman AMC’s Book Club — Pump: A Natural History of the Heart by Bill Schutt

Join us on Thursday, June 30th at 6pm ET on Zoom as we welcome zoologist and author Bill Schutt to discuss his latest book Pump: A Natural History of the Heart. Schwarzman AMC’s Dr. Ann Hohenhaus, Senior Veterinarian, Specialist in Oncology, will lead the conversation.

In this lively look at the hearts of animals—from whales to hummingbirds to bats to humans—Pump tells an incredible story of evolution and scientific progress. Along with examining the diversity of hearts and circulatory systems in the animal kingdom, Pump explores the symbolic significance of the heart throughout history.

Bill Schutt is an Emeritus Professor of Biology at LIU Post and a research associate at the American Museum of Natural History. Pump has already garnered great reviews from Publisher’s Weekly (starred review)​​Kirkus Reviews​, ​The Wall Street Journal​​Cool Green Science​​, and elsewhere.

This is a free, online-only event hosted via Zoom (https://zoom.us/​​). A link to the event with instructions will be emailed to all registered participants the day of the event. Please email UsdanInstitute@amcny.org with any questions.

 

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About the Book

cover of Pump book

Pump: A Natural History of the Heart

In this lively, unexpected look at the hearts of animals—from fish to bats to humans—American Museum of Natural History zoologist Bill Schutt tells an incredible story of evolution and scientific progress.

Millennia ago, when we first began puzzling over the mysteries of the human body, one organ stood out as vital. The heart was warm, it was central, and it moved as it pumped blood. The ancient Egyptians treated it with reverence, mummifying it separately from the body so that the soul inside it could be weighed. Aristotle believed that it was the seat of consciousness. Over the centuries, science has dispelled the myths, but our fascination with the heart has endured.

From the origins of circulation, still evident in some microorganisms today, to the enormous hearts of blue whales, we journey with Bill to beaches where horseshoe crabs are being harvested for their life-saving blood, and under the sea to learn about the world’s most natural antifreeze, flowing through the veins of icefish. And we follow him through human history, too, as scientists hypothesize wrongly and rightly about what is arguably our most important organ, ultimately developing the technologies that have helped us study the heart—and now, in the most cutting-edge labs, the tools that will help us regenerate it.


About the Author

Bill Schutt headshot

Bill Schutt is an Emeritus Professor of Biology at LIU Post and a research associate at the American Museum of Natural History. His newest non-fiction book, Pump: A Natural History of the Heart was published on September 21, 2021 and is currently available everywhere books are sold. Pump has already garnered great reviews from Publisher’s Weekly (starred review)​Kirkus Reviews​, The Wall Street Journal​Cool Green Science​, and elsewhere. His last book, Cannibalism: A Perfectly Natural Historygarnered widespread rave reviews from The New York Times, The Boston Globe and elsewhere.

Born in New York City and raised on Long Island by parents who encouraged his love for turning over stones and peering under logs, Schutt quickly grew a passion for the natural world, with its enormous wonders and its increasing vulnerability.

Schutt received his Ph.D. in zoology from Cornell and held a post-doctoral fellowship at the AMNH where he received a Theodore Roosevelt Memorial Grant. He has published over two dozen peer-reviewed articles on topics ranging from terrestrial locomotion in vampire bats to the precarious, arboreal copulatory behavior of a marsupial mouse. His research has been featured in Natural HistoryThe New York TimesNewsday, The Economist, and Discover. Schutt lives on Long Island with his wife and son.

He is currently working on a new non-fiction book on teeth, and has also finished the first draft of his first solo novel.

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