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The Mendelian revolution : the emergence of hereditarian concepts in modern science and society

Author: Peter J Bowler
Publisher: Baltimore : Johns Hopkins University Press, 1989.
Edition/Format:   Print book : EnglishView all editions and formats
Database:WorldCat
Summary:
Aristotle taught that a human embryo grows from a spiritual essence provided by the father. In the eighteenth century, some thinkers imagined preformed miniatures - the entire human race, one inside the other like Russian dolls, placed by God within the womb of Eve. Even when Gregor Mendel's now-famous experiments with peas revealed the existence of what Mendel called "dominent" and "recessive" traits, other  Read more...
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Genre/Form: History
Additional Physical Format: Online version:
Bowler, Peter J.
Mendelian revolution.
Baltimore : Johns Hopkins University Press, 1989
(OCoLC)755034405
Named Person: Gregor Mendel; Gregor Mendel; Gregor Mendel
Document Type: Book
All Authors / Contributors: Peter J Bowler
ISBN: 0801838886 9780801838880
OCLC Number: 19322402
Description: viii, 207 pages ; 23 cm
Contents: Mendelism : discovery or invention? --
Heredity before Darwin --
Evolution and heredity --
The cell in development and heredity --
Mendel's contribution --
The emergence of Mendelism --
Classical genetics --
Heredity and politics --
From classical to molecular genetics.
Responsibility: Peter J. Bowler.

Abstract:

Aristotle taught that a human embryo grows from a spiritual essence provided by the father. In the eighteenth century, some thinkers imagined preformed miniatures - the entire human race, one inside the other like Russian dolls, placed by God within the womb of Eve. Even when Gregor Mendel's now-famous experiments with peas revealed the existence of what Mendel called "dominent" and "recessive" traits, other researchers ignored the findings. The history of genetics, argues Peter J. Bowler, is often a history of scientists' religious, political, and social preconceptions. In The Mendelian Revolution Bowler shows how our thinking about heredity and reproduction has changed over centuries. He describes how modern notions of heredity developed, explains what Gregor Mendel's work really meant, and challenges the myth of Mendelism's "rediscovery" in the twentieth century. From the example of genetics, he reveals the flaws in the traditional view of scientific progress as an objective search for empirical truth. And he reveals how understanding Mendelism and heredity can help us understand the increasingly complex role of genetics in the modern world. -- from dust jacket.

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"An enormously informative book, presenting a mass of diverse material with economy and clarity, and formulating a deeply interesting thesis." -- British Journal of the History of Science

 
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