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Biological complexity and integrative pluralism

Author: Sandra D Mitchell; MyiLibrary.
Publisher: New York ; Cambridge : Cambridge University Press, 2003.
Series: Cambridge studies in philosophy and biology.
Edition/Format:   eBook : Document : EnglishView all editions and formats
Summary:
"This collection of essays by a leading philosopher of science presents a defense of integrative pluralism as the best description for the complexity of scientific inquiry today. The tendency of some scientists to unify science by reducing all theories to a few fundamental laws of the most basic particles that populate our universe is ill-suited to the biological sciences, which study multicomponent, multilevel,  Read more...
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Details

Genre/Form: Electronic books
Material Type: Document, Internet resource
Document Type: Internet Resource, Computer File
All Authors / Contributors: Sandra D Mitchell; MyiLibrary.
ISBN: 0521817536 9780521817530 0521520797 9780521520799 0511069669 9780511069666
OCLC Number: 1057997803
Notes: Title from e-book title screen (viewed October 15, 2007).
Reproduction Notes: Electronic reproduction. UK : MyiLibrary, 2007. Available via World Wide Web. Access may be limited to MIL affiliated libraries.
Description: xv, 244 pages : illustrations ; 24 cm.
Contents: 1. Introduction --
2. Constitutive Complexity --
2.1. Compositional Complexity and the Superorganism Metaphor --
3. Dynamic Complexity --
3.1. The Evolution of Division of Labor --
4. Evolved Diversity --
4.1. Competing Units of Selection? A Case of Symbiosis --
4.2. The Units of Behavior in Evolutionary Explanations --
4.3. On Biological Functions --
5. Laws --
5.1. Pragmatic Laws --
5.2. Dimensions of Scientific Law --
5.3. Contingent Generalizations: Lessons from Biology --
5.4. Ceteris Paribus: An Inadequate Representation for Biological Contingency --
6. Pluralism or Disunity --
6.1. Critics of Unity of Science --
6.2. On Pluralism and Competition in Evolutionary Explanations --
6.3. Integrative Pluralism.
Series Title: Cambridge studies in philosophy and biology.
Responsibility: Sandra D. Mitchell.
More information:

Abstract:

"This collection of essays by a leading philosopher of science presents a defense of integrative pluralism as the best description for the complexity of scientific inquiry today. The tendency of some scientists to unify science by reducing all theories to a few fundamental laws of the most basic particles that populate our universe is ill-suited to the biological sciences, which study multicomponent, multilevel, evolved complex systems. This integrative pluralism is the best way to understand the different and complex processes - historical and interactive - that generate biological phenomena." "This book will be of interest to students and professionals in the philosophy of science."--Jacket.

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