Why the antireductionist consensus won't survive the case of classical Mendelian genetics

Philosophy of Science Association 1:125-39 (1990)
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Abstract

Philosophers now treat the relationship between classical genetics and molecular biology as a paradigm of nonreduction and this example is playing an increasingly prominent role in debates about the reducibility of theories in other sciences. This paper shows that the anti-reductionist consensus about genetics will not withstand serious scrutiny. In addition to defusing the main anti-reductionist objections, this critical analysis uncovers tell-tale signs of a significant reduction in progress. It also identifies philosophical issues relevant to gaining a better understanding of what is now happening in genetics and of what we might expect to happen in other sciences.

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C. Kenneth Waters
University of Calgary

Citations of this work

The Multiple Realizability Argument Against Reductionism.Elliott Sober - 1999 - Philosophy of Science 66 (4):542-564.
Relations Among Fields: Mendelian, Cytological and Molecular Mechanisms.Lindley Darden - 2005 - Studies in History and Philosophy of Science Part C: Studies in History and Philosophy of Biological and Biomedical Sciences 36 (2):349-371.
What Was Classical Genetics?C. Kenneth Waters - 2004 - Studies in History and Philosophy of Science Part A 35 (4):783-809.

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