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Thinking about Biology

Author: Stephen Webster

Publisher: Cambridge University Press


Publish Date: April 14, 2003

ISBN-10: 0521599547

Pages: 248

File Type: PDF

Language: English

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Book Preface

Thinking About Biology

Thinking About Biology is intended for biology students who are interested in reflecting on the wider contexts of their studies. The book encourages students to see that biology does not deliver certainties; it discusses howbiological ideas become established facts; and it uses history to examine how ideas change and to show that the biological facts that form the basis of a biology course are also likely to change.

Each chapter is based on biological topics, and examines them for their philosophical, social and political implications. Topics covered include the role of natural selection in evolution, the history of ideas about fertilisation and inheritance, vivisection and reductionism. Genetically modified foods, xenotransplantation, eugenics and genetic testing are some of the controversial subjects discussed.

Thinking About Biology should be essential reading for all college students already taking a course in the biological sciences, and for those contemplating such a course in the future.

stephen websteris a lecturer in the Science Communication Group at Imperial College London, where he teaches the philosophy of science and research ethics. He is the author of three radio plays and several school biology textbooks. His current research project at Imperial College examines collaborative ventures between scientists and artists.

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