Threefoldness in Humans and Mammals

Toward a Biology of Form

by Wolfgang Schad 


6.5 x 9.25 inches;  two-volume set  in a handsome slip case          Scroll down for sample pages
Vol. 1:  722 pages;  Vol. 2:  605 pages.
Over 1500 photographs and drawings.
Adonis Press, December 2020                                                         Available January 18, 2021  
ISBN 978-0-932776-64-8
$125
Book Description 

The result of over 50 years of research, Threefoldness in Humans and Mammals is the beautiful, authorized edition of Wolfgang Schad’s life’s work. In chapter after chapter of this monumental two-volume work Schad demonstrates in detail how the dynamic concept of the threefold organism, first described by Rudolf Steiner 100 years ago, sheds new light on aspects of the mammals such as their size, form, coloration, physiology, embryonic development, behavior, and habitat. Indeed, he shows how the threefoldness of the organism – comprised of the polarity of nerve-sense and metabolic-limb systems and the mediating circulatory-respiratory system – is in fact a key to understanding the extraordinary diversity of our closest animal relatives.

As one reads this book one can experience a growing sense of satisfaction – indeed wonder – as one realizes that each species, through its particular constitution, actually explains itself: that right down into specific features such as dentition and coloration, it is a unique embodiment of the threefold organization. At the same time one begins to experience the threefold organism itself – not as an abstract, rigid thought construct which allows us to determine a mammal's taxonomy – but as a creative lawfulness that comes to one-sided expression in each species.

Thus Schad follows in the footsteps of Johann Wolfgang Goethe who said of his scientific pursuits: “The ultimate goal would be: to grasp that everything in the realm of fact is already theory. … Let us not seek for something behind the phenomena – they themselves are the theory.”

In the first volume, a masterful, comprehensive description of the threefold human organism lays the groundwork for an in-depth consideration of the most familiar groups of mammals including stunning chapters on antelopes and deer with their horns and antlers and a concluding chapter on mammals’ intimate relationship with their natural environment. The second volume begins with chapters on the more primitive mammals, continues with studies of mammalian embryology, milk, emotional life, and relationship to death, and then returns to the theme of human threefoldness in the last chapter. The balanced threefoldness of the human organism contrasts with its extraordinarily diverse but one-sided expressions in the mammals; these, in turn emphasize aspects of our own humanity. A growing awareness of this intimate reciprocal relationship leads to a deepening empathy for our animal brothers and sisters.

The reader will do well to begin with the first chapters in volume 1, which introduce the main motifs that recur and build throughout the book. Although the content includes a great deal of specialized knowledge, it is presented in language accessible to the general reader. The text is richly illustrated with well-chosen photographs and drawings. Numerous diagrams shed light on the dynamic interrelationships within various groups of mammals. The two-volume set comes protected in a handsome slip case. In both form and content, this is a classic edition of a groundbreaking work that should find its place in every home, school, biology department, and library.


Why a new edition of Wolfgang Schad’s two-volume work on mammals?

Just two years ago Adonis Press published a limited edition (200 copies) of Understanding Mammals, a greatly expanded version of Man and Mammals, which was published in 1977. Understanding Mammals was originally intended to be the final, authorized edition of Wolfgang Schad’s monumental work on mammals. However, because of illness and other urgent demands, Schad was unable to review the two volumes before they went to print. As the publication had already been announced, a compromise was made to print only a limited number of copies.

Since that time, Schad has been able to complete his review of the book. The result is a new title, Threefoldness in Humans and Mammals: Toward a Biology of Form, a new cover design, two author’s prefaces, and minor corrections, revisions and additions throughout the two volumes including some new illustrations. Also new is a handsome, sturdy slip case which holds and protects the two volumes. However, the basic content, the chapters, and the pagination remain the same, so that the two editions can be used interchangeably. Those who have a copy of Understanding Mammals therefore should not feel that they need to “upgrade” to the new edition.


Comments 

“In this monumental work, Wolfgang Schad applies Goethe’s dynamic way of seeing and thinking, further elaborated by Rudolf Steiner’s threefold principle, to the morphology, physiology, embryology, diversity, and ecology of mammals.  In recent years, in partial response to the explosive development of molecular biology, there has been a call to return to studying organisms as they present themselves to our direct experience. This is a well-considered invitation to look more comprehensively at the living organism from multiple perspectives in an effort to answer questions left in the dark by gene-centered research programs. For example, we still cannot satisfactorily explain what constitutes the coherence of an organism, what guides developmental processes, how the genotype is translated into the phenotype or how anatomical structures and organs typically grow where they’re supposed to grow, in the right dimensions, and in the right configurations. Clearly, this is an exciting time in biology, and there are numerous theoretical and experimental developments, which include the findings of heterochrony, epigenetics, evolutionary developmental biology (evo-devo), gene networks, and developmental trade-offs/compensations. Each of these calls for a new synthesis that integrates comparative morphology, physiology, and the complex findings of analytical anatomy and molecular biology. Schad’s work is a compelling answer to this call.   We are so fortunate, and I am personally deeply grateful, that Wolfgang Schad has made the effort to share the fruits of his life’s work in a new, expanded, updated, and accessible format. There is enough between the covers of these two volumes to stimulate thought, research, and application by another generation or two.” 

--- Dr. Mark Riegner, Environmental Studies, Prescott College, Prescott, Arizona


“Wolfgang Schad’s genius demonstrates a compelling way to understand mammal biology, recognizing each well-known group as a larger ‘relational organism’ within its family, class, and biosphere environment. Brimming with warmth and wisdom born of a lifetime of all-embracing study and affection for the familiar class to which we humans belong, Schad’s insights are revolutionary and paradigm-changing. He sees what detached analysis so often misses, because it is right before our eyes: namely that each species’ morphology, physiology, behavior, even color and reproduction, is an organically understandable expression of its organized constitution, no less integrated within Class or superorganism Mammalia than our organs are within our body, or mammals within the biosphere.”

--- Dr. Martin Lockley, College of Liberal Arts and Sciences, University of Colorado Denver

  

“Wolfgang Schad’s book Man and Mammalswas a revelation when I first read it some years ago. Since then it has continued to inspire my work in palaeobiology and evolutionary science. This updated edition, with a new title and two very fine chapters on mammalian embryology, is very welcome.  Anyone who seriously follows Schad’s arguments will understand that this book is by no means a completed project. It is a foundation for further research into the animal kingdom using the methodology of Goethean science, which Schad describes in an early chapter. The book is very detailed, but written such that the information is accessible to general readers as well as the open-minded specialist.  I highly recommend this insightful approach to zoological research.”                                                                                                                

--- Dr. Judyth Sassoon, School of Earth Sciences, University of Bristol


Contents
Volume 1

Preface . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . vii

From the Preface to the 2012 German Edition . . . . . . . . . . . . x

Publisher’s Acknowledgments . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . xii

1. Motive, Method, and Theme . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 1

2. The Threefold Human Organism . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 15

3. Threefoldness in the Higher Mammals . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 37

4. The Carnivores . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 47

         Terrestrial Carnivores . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 48

         Seals . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 141

5. Cetaceans: Whales, Dolphins, and Porpoises . . . . . . . . . . 177

6. The Rodents . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 243

7. The Ungulates: An Overview . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 293

8. The Horned Mammals: Cattle, Goats, and Sheep . . . . . . . . 365

9. The Horned Mammals: Antelopes . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 447

10. The Antlered Mammals: Deer . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 533

11. The Giraffes . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 651

12. The Environment as Organism . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 695

Volume 2

Introduction to Volume 2 . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 711

13. The Primitive Mammals . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 713

         a. The Monotremes . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 713

         b. The Marsupials (Albrecht Schad) . . . . . . . . . . . 723

14. The Insectivores and Primates . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 789

15. The Bats . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 833

16. The Xenarthrans and Pangolins . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 873

17. The Lagomorphs, and the Elephants and their Relatives . . . 921

18. Introduction to Mammalian Embryology . . . . . . . . . . . 993

19. Mammalian Embryonic Membranes and Placentation (Heinrich Brettschneider) . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 1037

20. Milk . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 1109

21. Death in Mammals . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 1131

22. The Emotional Life of Mammals . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 1155

23. Human Threefoldness . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 1169

Notes. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 1213

Illustration sources. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 1235

References. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 1243

Species index. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 1281

The authors . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 1309


Sample pages:  p. 158, p. 328, and p.864