The Superorganism

Based on remarkable research, eighteen years after the publication of The Ants, this new volume expands our knowledge of social insects (among them, ants, bees, wasps and termites). Superorganisms—tightly knit colonies of individuals, formed by altruistic co-operation, complex communication and division of labour— represent one of the basic stages of biological organisation, midway between the organism and the species. As the authors demonstrate, the study of the superorganism has led to important advances in our understanding of how the transitions between such levels have occurred in evolution and how life has progressed from simple to complex forms. Visually spectacular, The Superorganism provides a deep look into a part of the living world hitherto glimpsed by only a few.

"A landmark book documents how social insects form highly successful colonies that mimic a single organism..."
Nature

 

Author: 
Bert Hölldobler, Edward O. Wilson
Published in: 
2008
Translated in Italian by:
with title: Il Superorganismo