Reflections on Ernst Mayr's this is biology

Biology and Philosophy 14 (1):103-116 (1999)
  Copy   BIBTEX

Abstract

In this essay I argue that Ernst Mayr's idea that the emergence of evolutionary biology in Western thought was delayed by the pernicious influence of the false ideologies of Platonism, Christianity, and physicalism is ahistorical and anti-evolutionary, that similar ideas, especially his antipathy to physicalism, prejudice his account of the transformation of natural history and medical science into biology, that his organicist resolution of the perennial conflict between mechanism and vitalism is an unstable compound of semi-holism and semi-mechanism, that his conception of biology as the true bridge between the sciences and the humanities, ethics, and social theory is open to question (especially as to the adequacy of the theory of natural selection to account for every aspect of human nature), and that his depiction of science as the sovereign key to understanding everything known to exist or happen in this universe cannot be justified at the bar of reason.

Links

PhilArchive



    Upload a copy of this work     Papers currently archived: 91,252

External links

Setup an account with your affiliations in order to access resources via your University's proxy server

Through your library

Analytics

Added to PP
2009-01-28

Downloads
51 (#300,335)

6 months
11 (#202,259)

Historical graph of downloads
How can I increase my downloads?

Citations of this work

No citations found.

Add more citations

References found in this work

The foundations of metaphysics in science.Errol E. Harris - 1965 - Atlantic Highlands, N.J.: Humanities Press.
The Foundations of Metaphysics in Science.Errol E. Harris - 1965 - Atlantic Highlands, N.J.: Routledge.
The Foundations of Metaphysics in Science.Errol E. Harris - 1965 - Philosophy 40 (154):361-362.

Add more references