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"This first comprehensive study of social insects since the 1930s includes more than 250 illustrations and covers all aspects of classification, evolution, anatomy, physiology, and behavior of the higher social insects-the ants, social wasps and bees, and termites. Since the publication of W.M. Wheeler's "The Social Insects" in 1928 and Franz Maidl's "Die Lebensgewohnheiten und Instinkte der staatenbildenden Insekten" in 1934, the literature on social insects has increased enormously and entirely new ways of studying insect societies have developed. Mr. Wilson reinterprets here the knowledge on the subject through the concepts of modern biology-from biochemistry to evolutionary theory and population ecology. He reviews the evolution of parental care and other primitive forms of social behavior throughout the arthropods and investigates various forms of symbiosis between the social insects and other anthropods. He also compares insect and vertebrate societies in basic theoretical terms, showing how unified sociobiology is possible if developed as a branch of population biology"--Jacket. A study of insect sociology, presenting individual investigations of wasps, ants, bees, and termites, and discussing caste, behavior, communication, symbioses, and other topics.