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After the discovery of the structure of DNA in 1953, scientists working in molecular biology embraced reductionism the theory that all complex systems can be understood in terms of their components. Reductionism, however, has been widely resisted by both nonmolecular biologists and scientists working outside the field of biology. Many of these antireductionists, nevertheless, embrace the notion of physicalism the idea that all biological processes are physical in nature. How, Alexander Rosenberg asks, can these self-proclaimed physicalists also be antireductionists? With clarity and wit, "Darwinian Reductionism" navigates this difficult and seemingly intractable dualism with convincing analysis and timely evidence. In the spirit of the few distinguished biologists who accept reductionism E. O. Wilson, Francis Crick, Jacques Monod, James Watson, and Richard Dawkins Rosenberg provides a philosophically sophisticated defense of reductionism and applies it to molecular developmental biology and the theory of natural selection, ultimately proving that the physicalist must also be a reductionist. "

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Book Details

ISBN: 9780226727295
ISBN-10: 0226727297
Format: Hardback
(235mm x 163mm x 21mm)
Pages: 272
Imprint: University of Chicago Press
Publisher: The University of Chicago Press
Publish Date: 22-Sep-2006
Country of Publication: United States

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Author Biography - Alexander Rosenberg

Alex Rosenberg is the R. Taylor Cole Professor of Philosophy and Biology at Duke University and the author of many books, including "Economics Mathematical Politics or Science of Diminishing Returns? "and "Instrumental Biology, or The Disunity of Science," both published by the University of Chicago Press."

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