The Epistemology of Development, Evolution, and Genetics

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Oktober 2004



The essays in this collection examine developments in three fundamental biological disciplines--embryology, evolutionary biology, and genetics--in conflict with each other for much of the twentieth century. They consider key methodological problems and the difficulty of overcoming them. Richard Burian interweaves historical appreciation of the settings within which scientists work, substantial knowledge of the biological problems at stake and the methodological and philosophical issues faced in integrating biological knowledge drawn from disparate sources.


1. General introduction; Part I. Methodological Issues: 2. How the choice of experimental organism matters; 3. Unification and coherence as methodological objectives in the biological sciences; Part II. Evolution: 4. 'Adaptation'; 5. The influence of the evolutionary paradigm; 6. 'Nothing in biology makes sense except in the light of evolution' (Theodosius Dobzhansky); Part III. Genetics and Molecular Biology: 7. On conceptual change in biology; 8. Technique, task definition, and the transition from genetics to molecular genetics; 9. Too many kinds of genes; Part IV. Development: 10. Lillie's paradox - or, some hazards of cellular geography; 11. On conflicts between genetic and developmental viewpoints; 12. Reconceiving animals and their evolution.


Richard M. Burian is Professor of Philosophy and Science Studies at Virginia Polytechnic Institute and State University.


"for those willing to invest some time, the rewards of this volume are considerable: Burian presents a nuanced account of a number of important developments in 20th century biology." - Todd Grantham, College of Charleston
EAN: 9780521836753
ISBN: 0521836751
Untertitel: 'Cambridge Studies in Philosoph'. New. Sprache: Englisch.
Erscheinungsdatum: Oktober 2004
Seitenanzahl: 290 Seiten
Format: gebunden
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