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The Ocean’s Whistleblower: The Remarkable Life and Work of Daniel Pauly

The Ocean’s Whistleblower: The Remarkable Life and Work of Daniel Pauly

Daniel Pauly is a living legend in the world of marine biology. He coined the influential term “shifting baselines,” in which knowledge of environmental disaster fades over time, leading to a misguided understanding of our world. He blew the whistle on the global fishing industry, alerting the public to the devastation of overfishing. And he developed data-driven research methods that led to groundbreaking discoveries.

Daniel Pauly is also a man whose life was shaped by struggle. Born after the Second World War to a white French woman and Black American GI in Paris, Pauly’s childhood has been described as Dickensian. His father left before he was born and his mother, whose family did not accept her and her mixed-race son, fell prey to a manipulative Swiss couple who abducted Pauly under murky circumstances. He was taken to Switzerland, where he was treated cruelly as the couple’s servant.

Pauly escaped to Germany to attend university and, as a young man, travelled to the United States during the 1969 civil rights movement, where he met his father’s family and experienced a political and racial reawakening. From there, he went on to have one of the most decorated careers in the field of marine biology. The Ocean’s Whistleblower “weaves together the challenges of marine research with an astonishing coming-of-age story” (Andrew Sharpless, Oceana) and is told through interviews with colleagues, friends, and Pauly himself. A brilliant book about a brilliant man, The Ocean’s Whistleblower finally profiles one of the most influential scientists of our time.

Part I. Origins

A Swiss Childhood

Youth in Germany

Chapter 1. The Search for an American Father

Part II. Constructions

Chapter 2. From Oceanography to Fisheries Biology

Chapter 3. Daniel’s First African Experience

Chapter 4. Development Aid in Indonesia

Chapter 5. Birth of a Career in the Philippines

Chapter 6. San Miguel Bay and the Social Dimension of Fisheries

Chapter 7. Tropical Statistics

Chapter 8. A Pacific Heroine

Chapter 9. A Man of Letters

Chapter 10. Fish Stories in Peru

Chapter 11. Nature in a Box

Chapter 12. For All the Fish in the World

Part III. On the World Stage

Chapter 13. The Big Leagues

Chapter 14. Fishing Down Marine Food Webs

Chapter 15. The Sea Around Us

Chapter 16. Chinese Fisheries and Charles Darwin

Chapter 17. Uncertain Glory

Chapter 18. Reconstructions

Chapter 19. Africa Forever

Chapter 20. French Allies

Chapter 21. First Loves, Final Battles




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