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Evolution made to order : plant breeding and technological innovation in twentieth-century America

Author: Helen Anne Curry
Publisher: Chicago : The University of Chicago Press, 2017.
Edition/Format:   eBook : Document : EnglishView all editions and formats
Summary:
In the mid-20th century, American plant breeders, frustrated by their dependence on natural variation in creating new crops and flowers, eagerly sought technologies that could extend human control over nature. Their search led them to celebrate a series of strange tools: an x-ray beam directed at dormant seeds, a drop of chromosome-altering colchicine on a flower bud, and a piece of radioactive cobalt in a field of  Read more...
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Details

Genre/Form: History
Material Type: Document, Internet resource
Document Type: Internet Resource, Computer File
All Authors / Contributors: Helen Anne Curry
ISBN: 9780226390116 022639011X 9780226390086 022639008X
OCLC Number: 990322974
Notes: Previously issued in print: 2016.
Target Audience: Specialized.
Description: 1 online resource : illustrations (black and white)
Responsibility: Helen Anne Curry.

Abstract:

In the mid-20th century, American plant breeders, frustrated by their dependence on natural variation in creating new crops and flowers, eagerly sought technologies that could extend human control over nature. Their search led them to celebrate a series of strange tools: an x-ray beam directed at dormant seeds, a drop of chromosome-altering colchicine on a flower bud, and a piece of radioactive cobalt in a field of growing crops. According to scientific and popular reports of the time, these mutation-inducing methods would generate variation on demand, in turn allowing breeders to genetically engineer crops and flowers to order. Creating a new crop or flower would soon be as straightforward as innovating any other modern industrial product. 'In Evolution Made to Order', Helen Anne Curry traces the history of America's pursuit of tools that could speed up evolution.

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"In this fascinating, well-researched history of genetic innovation, Curry explores the hype, intensive investigation, and, ultimately, the disappointment accompanying the application of new Read more...

 
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