History and Philosophy Of Science | History of Biology
X508 | 26526 | Sander Gliboff


Sander Gliboff
X508
History of Biology

The term “biology” was first used at the turn of the nineteenth
century to distinguish a new “scientific” or “philosophical”
approach to the study of life, distinct from natural history,
natural theology, and medicine.  But what did it mean to be
scientific—then and for the ensuing two hundred years?  Biology has
continually transformed itself, in keeping with changing ideals of
how to do science.
This seminar is a survey of key figures and pivotal moments in the
history of modern biology, that have re-defined its scientific
character, by either opening new lines of inquiry and explanation,
developing new kinds of instruments, practices, and institutions, or
changing the social role of the biological scientist.
There are no prerequisites, but knowledge of modern biology or
modern European or American history will be helpful.
REQUIRED BOOKS
Watson, James D., The Double Helix, Simon & Schuster, ISBN 0-7432-
1630-X

RECOMMENDED BOOKS

Creager, Angela, The Life of a Virus, University of Chicago Press,
ISBN 0-226-12026-0
Ruse, Michael, The Darwinian Revolution, University of Chicago
Press, ISBN 0-226-73169-3
Morange, Michel, A History of Molecular Biology, Harvard University
Press, ISBN 0-674-00169-9

OTHER REQUIRED MATERIAL
Online sources and electronic reserves.