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NOVA: Lord Of The Ants

Airs Sunday, August 15, 2010 at 3 p.m. on KPBS TV

Above: Edward O. Wilson, Harvard's Pelegrino University Research Professor and Curator in Entomology in the Museum of Comparative Zoology, in his office, Tuesday, December 17, 2002.

Man of Ideas

Investigate E. O. Wilson's remarkable half-century career through an overview of 12 of his books.

Every so often a giant emerges on the stage of science, someone who transcends the narrow boundaries of a particular line of research and alters our perspective on the world. E.O. Wilson is such a man. While studying ants, Wilson struggled to comprehend the evolutionary forces that led workers to forage and soldiers to fight; in doing so, he became the architect of a controversial new discipline: sociobiology. His appreciation of the natural world has been a driving force for his worldwide conservation efforts. Wilson is an icon of our times: a lord of the ants who sought to explain nature on earth ... and who now fights for its survival.

Actor and environmentalist Harrison Ford narrates this engaging portrait of a ceaselessly active scientist and eloquent writer, who has accumulated two Pulitzer Prizes among his many other honors. Says fellow naturalist David Attenborough: "He will go down as the man who opened the eyes of millions 'round the world to the glories, the values, the importance of—to use his term—biodiversity."

Video

Watch the full episode "NOVA: Lord Of The Ants"

Above: Every so often a giant emerges on the stage of science, someone who transcends the narrow boundaries of a particular line of research and alters our perspective on the world. E.O. Wilson is such a man. In "Lord of the Ants," NOVA profiles this soft-spoken Southerner and Harvard professor, who is an acclaimed advocate for ants, biological diversity, and the controversial extension of Darwinian ideas to human society.