Biology Under the Influence

Author: Richard Lewontin
Publisher: NYU Press
ISBN: 1583671587
Format: PDF, ePub, Mobi
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How do we understand the world? While some look to the heavens for intelligent design, others argue that it is determined by information encoded in DNA. Science serves as an important activity for uncovering the processes and operations of nature, but it is also immersed in a social context where ideology influences the questions we ask and how we approach the material world. Biology Under the Influence: Dialectical Essays on the Coevolution of Nature and Society breaks from the confirms of determinism, offering a dialectical analysis for comprehending a dynamic social and natural world. In Biology Under the Influence, Richard Lewontin and Richard Levins provide a devastating critique of genetic determinism and reductionism within science while exploring a broad range of issues including the nature of science, biology, evolution, the environment, pubic health, and dialectics, They dismantle the ideology that attempts to naturalize social inequalities, unveil the alienation of science and nature, and illustrate how a dialectical position serves as a basis for grappling with historical developments and a world characterized by change. Biology Under the Influence brings together the illuminating essays of two prominent scientists who work to demystify and empower the public's understanding of science and nature.

Complex Systems in Finance and Econometrics

Author: Robert A. Meyers
Publisher: Springer Science & Business Media
ISBN: 1441977007
Format: PDF, ePub, Mobi
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"This book consists of selections from the Encyclopedia of complexity and systems science edited by Robert A. Myers"--T.p. verso.

The Dialectical Biologist

Author: Richard Levins
Publisher: Harvard University Press
ISBN: 9780674202832
Format: PDF, Kindle
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Scientists act within a social context and from a philosophical perspective that is inherently political. Whether they realize it or not, scientists always choose sides. The Dialectical Biologist explores this political nature of scientific inquiry, advancing its argument within the framework of Marxist dialectic. These essays stress the concepts of continual change and co-determination between organism and environment, part and whole, structure and process, science and politics. Throughout, this book questions our accepted definitions and biases, showing the self-reflective nature of scientific activity within society.

Not in Our Genes

Author: Richard Lewontin
Publisher:
ISBN: 9781608467273
Format: PDF
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Three eminent scientists analyze the scientific, social, and political roots of biological determinism.

The Selfish Gene

Author: Richard Dawkins
Publisher: Oxford University Press, USA
ISBN: 9780192860927
Format: PDF
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An ethologist shows man to be a gene machine whose world is one of savage competition and deceit

Nature and Society

Author: Philippe Descola
Publisher: Routledge
ISBN: 1134827156
Format: PDF, ePub, Mobi
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The contributors to this book focus on the relationship between nature and society from a variety of theoretical and ethnographic perspectives. Their work draws upon recent developments in social theory, biology, ethnobiology, epistemology, sociology of science, and a wide array of ethnographic case studies -- from Amazonia, the Solomon Islands, Malaysia, the Mollucan Islands, rural comunities from Japan and north-west Europe, urban Greece, and laboratories of molecular biology and high-energy physics. The discussion is divided into three parts, emphasising the problems posed by the nature-culture dualism, some misguided attempts to respond to these problems, and potential avenues out of the current dilemmas of ecological discourse.

It Ain t Necessarily So

Author: Richard C. Lewontin
Publisher: New York Review of Books
ISBN: 9780940322950
Format: PDF, Kindle
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Is our nature—as individuals, as a species—determined by our evolution and encoded in our genes? If we unravel the protein sequences of our DNA, will we gain the power to cure all of our physiological and psychological afflictions and even to solve the problems of our society? Today biologists—especially geneticists—are proposing answers to questions that have long been asked by philosophy or faith or the social sciences. Their work carries the weight of scientific authority and attracts widespread public attention, but it is often based on what the renowned evolutionary biologist Richard Lewontin identifies as a highly reductive misconception: "the pervasive error that confuses the genetic state of an organism with its total physical and psychic nature as a human being." In these nine essays covering the history of modern biology from Darwin to Dolly the sheep, all of which were originally published in The New York Review of Books, Lewontin combines sharp criticisms of overreaching scientific claims with lucid expositions of the exact state of current scientific knowledge—not only what we do know, but what we don't and maybe won't anytime soon. Among the subjects he discusses are heredity and natural selection, evolutionary psychology and altruism, nineteenth-century naturalist novels, sex surveys, cloning, and the Human Genome Project. In each case he casts an ever-vigilant and deflationary eye on the temptation to look to biology for explanations of everything we want to know about our physical, mental, and social lives. These essays—several of them updated with epilogues that take account of scientific developments since they were first written—are an indispensable guide to the most controversial issues in the life sciences today. The second edition of this collection includes new essays on genetically modified food and the completion of the Human Genome Project. It is an indispensable guide to the most controversial issues in the life sciences today.

Biology As Ideology

Author: Richard Lewontin
Publisher: House of Anansi
ISBN: 0887848478
Format: PDF
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R. C. Lewontin is a prominent scientist -- a geneticist who teaches at Harvard -- yet he believes that we have placed science on a pedestal, treating it as an objective body of knowledge that transcends all other ways of knowing and all other endeavours. Lewontin writes in this collection of essays, which began their life as CBC Radio's Massey Lectures Series for 1990: "Scientists do not begin life as scientists, after all, but as social beings immersed in a family, a state, a productive structure, and they view nature through a lens that has been molded by their social experience. . . . Science, like the Church before it, is a supremely social institution, reflecting and reinforcing the dominant values and vices of society at each historical epoch." In Biology as Ideology Lewontin examines the false paths down which modern scientific ideology has led us. By admitting science's limitations, he helps us rediscover the richness of nature -- and appreciate the real value of science.