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Exemplarising the origin of a science: a path to genetics (from Mendel to Bateson)

Shan, Y; (2016) Exemplarising the origin of a science: a path to genetics (from Mendel to Bateson). Doctoral thesis , UCL (University College London). Green open access

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Abstract

This thesis aims to propose and defend a new way of analysing and understanding the origin of genetics (from Mendel to Bateson). Traditionally philosophers used to analyse the history of genetics in terms of theories. However, I will argue that this theory-based approach is highly problematic. In Chapter 1, I shall critically review the theory-driven approach to analysisng the history of genetics and diagnose its problems. In Chapter 2, inspired by Kuhn’s concept “exemplar”, I shall make a new interpretation of exemplar and introduce an exemplar-based approach. Before introducing my exemplar-based analysis, I find it necessary to scrutinise the origin of genetics from Mendel to Bateson. In Chapter 3, I shall reinterpret Mendel’s work on Pisum by re-examining Mendel’s paper (1865) and its historical research context. In Chapter 4, by carefully examining the conceptual changes, I argue that the rediscovery event in 1900 should be better characterised as attempts of incorporating Mendel’s work with the work of “rediscoverers” (i.e. de Vries, Correns, Tschermak, and Bateson) rather than a mere reintroduction to Mendel’s work. In Chapter 5, I shall use the exemplar-based approach to analysing and interpreting the origin of genetics from Mendel to Bateson. In Chapter 6, I shall defend my exemplar-based characterisation of the origin of genetics by dismissing the potential responses from the theory-driven one, critically examining a potential mechanism-based analysis, and making the further notes on the implication of taking the exemplar-based approach to investigate scientific practice.

Type: Thesis (Doctoral)
Title: Exemplarising the origin of a science: a path to genetics (from Mendel to Bateson)
Event: University College London
Open access status: An open access version is available from UCL Discovery
Language: English
Keywords: Exemplar-based Approach, Integrated History and Philosophy of Science, Scientific Progress, Mendel, The Origin of Genetics, Kuhn's Legacy
UCL classification: UCL
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices > UCL BEAMS
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices > UCL BEAMS > Faculty of Maths and Physical Sciences
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices > UCL BEAMS > Faculty of Maths and Physical Sciences > Dept of Science and Technology Studies
URI: https://discovery.ucl.ac.uk/id/eprint/1476130
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