Work In Progress Seminar with Dr. John van Wyhe


Topic: Apocalypse now! Evolution discovered in 1850s South East Asia
Speaker: Dr. John van Wyhe

I am writing a semi-pop book on A.R Wallace's journey to Singapore and South East Asia, between 1854-1862, where he discovered evolution (independently of Darwin). I will discuss the outline of the book as I currently envision it and how the book continues to evolve and some sneak peaks at some new discoveries. The writing and research for the book are ongoing day by day so this is very much a work in progress!

The Tembusu (Fagraea fragrans) is a large evergreen tree in the family Gentianaceae. It is native to Southeast Asia. Its trunk is dark brown, with deeply fissured bark, looking somewhat like a bittergourd. It grows in an irregular shape from 10 to 25m high. Its leaves are light green and oval in shape. Its yellowish flowers have a distinct fragrance and the fruits of the tree are bitter tasting red berries, which are eaten by birds and fruit bats.