From the Preface: The human interest - or anxiety - associated with the possibility of life in outer space is intense. Do we have neighbors? Will we contact them? What will be their interest in us be? Friendly? Hostile? Will man expand into space and play a grand future role, bringing fertility to the galaxy? We do not know. This book explores these questions, bringing together to offerings from the different specialties that delve into the possibilities of life in outer space.
College astronomy texts now invariably devote a chapter to what astronomy has to say about life in outer space because the interested layman (and who is not interested?) expects to turn to those who have studied astronomy for reliable comment. Other sciences, especially physics, chemistry, biology, and anthropology, also contribute to the subject of extraterrestrial life; and, in return, the study of these sciences is enriched when it is illustrated by topics such as space travel, development of life, and the establishment of communication between independant civilizations. High school science can only be enlivened by injection of these stimulating and currently developing ideas.