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Vital forces, teleology and organization : philosophy of nature and the rise of biology in Germany

Author: Andrea Gambarotto
Publisher: Cham, Switzerland : Springer, [2018] ©2018
Series: History, philosophy and theory of the life sciences, Volume 21.
Edition/Format:   eBook : Document : EnglishView all editions and formats
Summary:
This book offers a comprehensive account of vitalism and the Romantic philosophy of nature. The author explores the rise of biology as a unified science in Germany by reconstructing the history of the notion of "vital force," starting from the mid-eighteenth through the early nineteenth century. Further, he argues that Romantic Naturphilosophie played a crucial role in the rise of biology in Germany, especially  Read more...
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Genre/Form: Electronic books
History
Additional Physical Format: Print version :
(OCoLC)994638962
Material Type: Document, Internet resource
Document Type: Internet Resource, Computer File
All Authors / Contributors: Andrea Gambarotto
ISBN: 9783319654157 3319654152
OCLC Number: 1005354111
Description: 1 online resource
Contents: Foreword --
Acknowledgments --
Contents --
Introduction --
Teleology Beyond Regrets --
Generation: The Debate Over the Formative Force and the Question of Ontogenesis --
1 Introduction and Outline: Ontogenesis and the Legacy of the Haller-Wolff Debate --
2 Diverging Views of Epigenesis: Wolff and Blumenbach on Teleology --
2.1 Epigenesis Without Purpose: Wolff and the Nutritive Force --
2.2 Goal-Directed Organization: Blumenbach and the Bildungstrieb --
3 An Unstable Middle Position: Kant on Teleology and Organization 3.1 The Technique of Nature3.2 Organized Beings and Machines --
4 From Chemistry to Organization: Reil on the Vital Force --
5 Concluding Remarks --
Functions: The GÜttingen School and the Physiology of Vital Forces --
1 Introduction and Outline: The GÜttingen School as a Historical Category --
2 Building Blocks of the GÜttingen School: Haller on Sensibility and Irritability --
3 Foundations of the GÃœttingen School: Vital Forces in Blumenbachâ#x80;#x99;s Physiology 4 Core of the GÃœttingen School: Kielmeyerâ#x80;#x99;s Lecture as the Program for a General Biology5 Explanatory Framework of the GÃœttingen School: Link and the Organic Forces as an Autonomous Research Program --
6 Kielmeyer and Link on Naturphilosophie --
7 Concluding Remarks --
Classification: Naturphilosophie and the Reform of Natural History --
1 Introduction and Outline: Natural History and Naturphilosophie --
2 Blumenbach on Natural History --
3 The â#x80;#x9C;Kantian Principleâ#x80;#x9D; for Natural History 3.1 Kant on the Concept of Race: A New Principle for Natural History?3.2 Ideas so Monstrous that Reason Recoils Before Them: Kant on Transformism --
3.3 Original Stem-Species: Kant and Girtanner on Archetypes --
4 The Unity of Type in Goetheâ#x80;#x99;s Morphology --
4.1 Metamorphosis as Idealized Epigenesis --
4.2 The Metamorphosis of Animals --
5 Animal Classification in Schellingâ#x80;#x99;s Naturphilosophie --
5.1 A New Era of Natural History --
5.2 Animal Classification in the Erster Entwurf --
6 Natural History and Naturphilosophie in Lorenz Oken 6.1 Naturphilosophie as a Foundation for Biology6.2 The Animal Kingdom and Human Anatomy: Okenâ#x80;#x99;s Classification --
7 Concluding Remarks --
Biology: Treviranus and the Life Sciences as a Unified Field --
1 Introduction and Outline: A New Scene of Inquiry --
2 Life and Vital Force --
3 Nature as an Organism --
4 The Levels of the Organic --
5 Ecology and Transformism --
6 Teleology and Organization --
7 Concluding Remarks --
Conclusion: Hegel on Vital Forces, Teleology and Organization
Series Title: History, philosophy and theory of the life sciences, Volume 21.
Responsibility: Andrea Gambarotto.

Abstract:

This book offers a comprehensive account of vitalism and the Romantic philosophy of nature. The author explores the rise of biology as a unified science in Germany by reconstructing the history of the notion of "vital force," starting from the mid-eighteenth through the early nineteenth century. Further, he argues that Romantic Naturphilosophie played a crucial role in the rise of biology in Germany, especially thanks to its treatment of teleology. In fact, both post-Kantian philosophers and naturalists were guided by teleological principles in defining the object of biological research. The book begins by considering the problem of generation, focusing on the debate over the notion of "formative force." Readers are invited to engage with the epistemological status of this formative force, i.e. the question of the principle behind organization. The second chapter provides a reconstruction of the physiology of vital forces as it was elaborated in the mid- to late-eighteenth century by the group of physicians and naturalists known as the "Göttingen School." Readers are shown how these authors developed an understanding of the animal kingdom as a graded series of organisms with increasing functional complexity. Chapter three tracks the development of such framework in Romantic Naturphilosophie. The author introduces the reader to the problem of classification, showing how Romantic philosophers of nature regarded classification as articulated by a unified plan that connects all living forms with one another, relying on the idea of living nature as a universal organism. In the closing chapter, this analysis shows how the three instances of pre-biological discourse on living beings - theory of generation, physiology and natural history - converged to form the consolidated disciplinary matrix of a general biology. The book offers an insightful read for all scholars interested in classical German philosophy, especially those researching the philosophy of nature, as well as the history and philosophy of biology.

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"Gambarotto's main point about the continuity between the investigations of the practicing life scientists and the Naturphilosophen in the late eighteenth century is quite convincing, and the Read more...

 
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Content-negotiable representations<\/p>\n