• Contingency is rich and fascinating; it embodies an exquisite tension between the power of individuals to modify history and the intelligible limits set by laws of nature. The details of individual and species's lives are not mere frills, without power to shape the large-scale course of events, but particulars that can alter entire futures, profoundly and forever.

    Stephen Jay Gould (2010). “Eight Little Piggies: Reflections in Natural History”, p.77, W. W. Norton & Company
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