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  1.  6
    Stochasticity in Cultural Evolution: A Revolution yet to Happen.Sylvain Billiard & Alexandra Alvergne - 2018 - History and Philosophy of the Life Sciences 40 (1):9.
    Over the last 40 years or so, there has been an explosion of cultural evolution research in anthropology and archaeology. In each discipline, cultural evolutionists investigate how interactions between individuals translate into group level patterns, with the aim of explaining the diachronic dynamics and diversity of cultural traits. However, while much attention has been given to deterministic processes, we contend that current evolutionary accounts of cultural change are limited because they do not adopt a systematic stochastic approach. First, we show (...)
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  2.  3
    The sociobiology of genes: the gene’s eye view as a unifying behavioural-ecological framework for biological evolution.Alexis De Tiège, Yves Van de Peer, Johan Braeckman & Koen B. Tanghe - 2018 - History and Philosophy of the Life Sciences 40 (1):6.
    Although classical evolutionary theory, i.e., population genetics and the Modern Synthesis, was already implicitly ‘gene-centred’, the organism was, in practice, still generally regarded as the individual unit of which a population is composed. The gene-centred approach to evolution only reached a logical conclusion with the advent of the gene-selectionist or gene’s eye view in the 1960s and 1970s. Whereas classical evolutionary theory can only work with fitness differences between individual organisms, gene-selectionism is capable of working with fitness differences among genes (...)
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  3.  1
    S tephen H ilgartner, Reordering Life: Knowledge and Control in the Genomics Revolution, Cambridge Massachusetts, The MIT Press, 2017, xiv + 343 pp., May 2017, $35.00/£27.95. [REVIEW]James W. E. Lowe - 2018 - History and Philosophy of the Life Sciences 40 (1):5.
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  4. Epigenesis by experience: Romantic empiricism and non-Kantian biology.Amanda Jo Goldstein - 2018 - History and Philosophy of the Life Sciences 40 (1):13.
    Reconstructions of Romantic-era life science in general, and epigenesis in particular, frequently take the Kantian logic of autotelic “self-organization” as their primary reference point. I argue in this essay that the Kantian conceptual rubric hinders our historical and theoretical understanding of epigenesis, Romantic and otherwise. Neither a neutral gloss on epigenesis, nor separable from the epistemological deflation of biological knowledge that has received intensive scrutiny in the history and philosophy of science, Kant’s heuristics of autonomous “self-organization” in the third Critique (...)
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  5.  2
    From lighthouse to hothouse: hospital hygiene, antibiotics and the evolution of infectious disease, 1950–1990.Christoph Gradmann - 2018 - History and Philosophy of the Life Sciences 40 (1):8.
    Upon entering clinical medicine in the 1940s, antibiotic therapy seemed to complete a transformation of hospitals that originated in the late nineteenth century. Former death sinks had become harbingers of therapeutic progress. Yet this triumph was short-lived. The arrival of pathologies caused by resistant bacteria, and of nosocomial infections whose spread was helped by antibiotic therapies, seemed to be intimately related to modern anti-infective therapy. The place where such problems culminated were hospitals, which increasingly appeared as dangerous environments where attempts (...)
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  6. Petri dish versus Winogradsky column: a longue durée perspective on purity and diversity in microbiology, 1880s–1980s.Grote Mathias - 2018 - History and Philosophy of the Life Sciences 40 (1):11.
    Microbial diversity has become a leitmotiv of contemporary microbiology, as epitomized in the concept of the microbiome, with significant consequences for the classification of microbes. In this paper, I contrast microbiology’s current diversity ideal with its influential predecessor in the twentieth century, that of purity, as epitomized in Robert Koch’s bacteriological culture methods. Purity and diversity, the two polar opposites with regard to making sense of the microbial world, have been operationalized in microbiological practice by tools such as the “clean” (...)
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  7.  1
    Crafting socialist embryology: dialectics, aquaculture and the diverging discipline in Maoist China, 1950–1965.Lijing Jiang - 2018 - History and Philosophy of the Life Sciences 40 (1):3.
    In the 1950s, embryology in socialist China underwent a series of changes that adjusted the disciplinary apparatus to suit socialism and the national goal of self-reliance. As the Communist state called on scientists to learn from the Soviets, embryologists’ comprehensive view on heredity, which did not contradict Trofim Lysenko ’s doctrines, provided a space for them to advance their discipline. Leading scientists, often trained abroad in the tradition of experimental embryology, rode on the tides of Maoist ideology and repositioned their (...)
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  8.  4
    Robot life: simulation and participation in the study of evolution and social behavior.M. Kelty Christopher - 2018 - History and Philosophy of the Life Sciences 40 (1):16.
    This paper explores the case of using robots to simulate evolution, in particular the case of Hamilton’s Law. The uses of robots raises several questions that this paper seeks to address. The first concerns the role of the robots in biological research: do they simulate something or do they participate in something? The second question concerns the physicality of the robots: what difference does embodiment make to the role of the robot in these experiments. Thirdly, how do life, embodiment and (...)
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  9.  3
    History as a Biomedical Matter: Recent Reassessments of the First Cases of Alzheimer’s Disease.Lara Keuck - 2018 - History and Philosophy of the Life Sciences 40 (1):10.
    This paper examines medical scientists’ accounts of their rediscoveries and reassessments of old materials. It looks at how historical patient files and brain samples of the first cases of Alzheimer’s disease became reused as scientific objects of inquiry in the 1990s, when a genetic neuropathologist from Munich and a psychiatrist from Frankfurt lead searches for left-overs of Alzheimer’s ‘founder cases’ from the 1900s. How and why did these researchers use historical methods, materials and narratives, and why did the biomedical community (...)
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  10.  1
    Paleoanthropology’s uses of the bipedal criterion.Lequin Mathilde - 2018 - History and Philosophy of the Life Sciences 40 (1):7.
    Bipedalism is one of the criteria that paleoanthropologists use in order to interpret the fossil record and to determine if a specimen belongs to the human lineage. In the context of such interpretations, bipedalism is considered to be a unique characteristic of this lineage that also marks its origin. This conception has largely remained unchallenged over the last decades, in spite of fossil discoveries that led to the emergence of bipedalism in the human lineage being shifted back by several millions (...)
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  11.  1
    Radium, biophysics, and radiobiology: tracing the history of radiobiology in twentieth-century China.Christine Yi Lai Luk - 2018 - History and Philosophy of the Life Sciences 40 (1):2.
    Radiobiology assesses the biological hazards of exposure to radioactive substances and nuclear radiation. This article explores the history of radiobiology in twentieth-century China by examining the overlapping of radium research and biophysics, from roughly the 1920s Nationalist period to the 1960s Communist period; from the foreign purchase of radium by the Rockefeller Foundation’s China Medical Board during the Republican era, to the institutional establishment of radiobiology as a subset of biophysics in the People’s Republic. Western historiography of radiobiology highlights the (...)
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  12.  1
    Modeling complexity: cognitive constraints and computational model-building in integrative systems biology.Miles MacLeod & Nancy J. Nersessian - 2018 - History and Philosophy of the Life Sciences 40 (1):17.
    Modern integrative systems biology defines itself by the complexity of the problems it takes on through computational modeling and simulation. However in integrative systems biology computers do not solve problems alone. Problem solving depends as ever on human cognitive resources. Current philosophical accounts hint at their importance, but it remains to be understood what roles human cognition plays in computational modeling. In this paper we focus on practices through which modelers in systems biology use computational simulation and other tools to (...)
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  13.  4
    M arta B ertolaso, Philosophy of Cancer: A Dynamic and Relational View, Dordrecht: Springer, 2016, xv + 190 pp., £66.99. [REVIEW]Anya Plutynski - 2018 - History and Philosophy of the Life Sciences 40 (1):1.
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  14.  1
    Semiotic systems with duality of patterning and the issue of cultural replicators.Gerhard Schaden & Cédric Patin - 2018 - History and Philosophy of the Life Sciences 40 (1):4.
    Two major works in recent evolutionary biology have in different ways touched upon the issue of cultural replicators in language, namely Dawkins’ Selfish Gene and Maynard Smith and Szathmáry’s Major Transitions in Evolution. In the latter, the emergence of language is referred to as the last major transition in evolution, a claim we argue to be derived from a crucial property of language, called Duality of Patterning. Prima facie, this property makes natural language look like a structural equivalent to DNA, (...)
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  15. S teeves D emazeux and P atrick S ingy , The DSM - 5 in Perspective: Philosophical Reflections on the Psychiatric Babel, Dordrecht, Heidelberg, New York, London: Springer, 2015, Series: History, Philosophy and Theory of the Life Sciences, Vol. 10, 238 pp, £90. [REVIEW]Jonathan Sholl - 2018 - History and Philosophy of the Life Sciences 40 (1):15.
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  16. Correction to: Informing materials: drugs as tools for exploring cancer mechanisms and pathways.Vignola-Gagné Etienne, Keating Peter & Cambrosio Alberto - 2018 - History and Philosophy of the Life Sciences 40 (1):12.
    The original version of this article unfortunately contained a mistake. Three entries are incorrect in the reference list. The corrected references are given below.
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  17.  7
    N atalia G. S ukhova & E rki T ammiksaar, Aleksandr Fedorovich Middendorf: K dvukhsotletiyu so dnia rozhdeniya [Alexander Theodor von Middendorff: On the Bicentenary of His Birthday], 2nd edition, revised and expanded, St. Petersburg: Nestor-Istoriya, 2015, 380 pp., price 300 roubles [In Russian]. [REVIEW]Maxim V. Vinarski & Tatiana I. Yusupova - 2018 - History and Philosophy of the Life Sciences 40 (1):14.
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