Download e-book for iPad: Biology and Ideology from Descartes to Dawkins by Denis R. Alexander, Ronald L. Numbers

By Denis R. Alexander, Ronald L. Numbers

ISBN-10: 0226608409

ISBN-13: 9780226608402

ISBN-10: 0226608417

ISBN-13: 9780226608419

Over the process human historical past, the sciences, and biology particularly, have usually been manipulated to reason vast human discomfort. for instance, biology has been used to justify eugenic courses, compelled sterilization, human experimentation, and dying camps—all in an try and help notions of racial superiority. through investigating the previous, the members to Biology and beliefs from Descartes to Dawkins wish to higher arrange us to figure ideological abuse of technology whilst it happens within the future.     Denis R. Alexander and Ronald L. Numbers assemble fourteen specialists to ascertain the numerous methods technological know-how has been used and abused for nonscientific reasons from the 15th century to the current day. that includes an essay on eugenics from Edward J. Larson and an exam of the growth of evolution via Michael J. Ruse, Biology and beliefs examines makes use of either benign and sinister, finally reminding us that ideological extrapolation keeps this day. An available survey, this assortment will enlighten historians of technological know-how, their scholars, training scientists, and a person drawn to the connection among technology and tradition.

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Over the process human heritage, the sciences, and biology specifically, have usually been manipulated to reason large human agony. for instance, biology has been used to justify eugenic courses, compelled sterilization, human experimentation, and dying camps—all in an try and help notions of racial superiority.

Download e-book for iPad: The botanizers: amateur scientists in nineteenth-century by Elizabeth B. Keeney

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Both Haller and Bonnet biology, atheism, politics in eighteenth-century france 47 found two principal areas of concern in the new biological theories. First, they did not see how forces could, on their own, be responsible for the generation of complex, seemingly designed, living organisms. Second, they were worried about the implications of active matter—not just in biology, where the old issue of spontaneous generation was given new life, but even more for religion, morality, and social stability.

23 50 shirley a. roe—chapter two Among these duped philosophers Voltaire was to include Maupertuis, Buffon, whose Histoire naturelle Voltaire seems to have first read in 1767, and an anonymous translator of a new French edition of Lucretius’ On the Nature of Things, which appeared in 1768 and which contained a positive report of Needham’s work in a note. This translation had actually been produced by the tutor of d’Holbach’s children (an individual named Lagrange) under the direction of Diderot and d’Holbach, and it is quite likely that the note came from Diderot.

It is clear, as several scholars have pointed out, that preformation through preexistence was a theory that responded more to philosophical than to observational needs. Jacques Roger was the first to explore the ties between preexistence of germs and mechanism, and to point out that, because the mechanistic view of the universe rested on passive matter and a non-interventionist God, preexistence made very good sense: “nature as a whole . . , by becoming a complex of mechanisms, had lost all spontaneity and become pure passivity in the hands of God, the God who had created it and was now content with simply maintaining its existence and motion.

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Biology and Ideology from Descartes to Dawkins by Denis R. Alexander, Ronald L. Numbers


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