Controlling Life

Controlling Life : Jacques Loeb and the Engineering Ideal in Biology

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Description

The biologist Jaques Loeb (1859-1924) helped to shape the practice of modern biological research through his radical emphasis on reductionist experimentation. This scientific biography traces Loeb's career, and places his experiments and the controversies they generated in their intellectual and institutional contexts.show more

Product details

  • Hardback | 256 pages
  • 160.5 x 236.7 x 24.1mm | 666.85g
  • Oxford University Press Inc
  • New York, United States
  • English
  • 0195042441
  • 9780195042443

Review quote

Excellent, scholarly biography. * New Scientist * This is a fascinating and scholarly book, that blends with sensitive contextual analysis of laboratories and university systems in the United States and Germany...Deserves a wide readership. * The Times Higher Educational Supplement * This highly topical and fascinating book deals essentially with the historical roots of biotechnology. Pauly weaves a rich fabric by integrating Loeb's career and his ideas into the social and political world of science and medicine in late 19th-century Germany and early 20th-century America...Recommended for college and university history of science collections. * Choice * Loeb...expressed his mind in repeated gambles on the crucial experiment that would at one stroke reduce terribly complex problems to simple solutions...Fascinating biography. * New York Review of Books * Few scientists of the past century have excited more passion and popular interest than Jacques Loeb...It is remarkable that Loeb has received little attention from biographers; it is more remarkable that this, the first book-length biography of Loeb, succeeds so richly in capturing not only the details of his life but also the meaning and implications of his work...Pauly's ambitious and rewarding effort to understand the origins of biotechnology deserves applause and a wide readership. * Science * A model of scholarly integrity and intuition, and will inspire historians and biologists alike. * The Scientist * This highly topical and and fascinating book deals essentially with the historical roots of biotechnology. Pauly weaves a rich fabric by integrating Loeb's career and his ideas into the social and political world of science and medicine in late 19th century Germany and early 20th century America...Recommended for college and university history of science collections. * Choice *show more

Back cover copy

The practice of modern biological research has been shaped, in large part, by the interests and attitudes of nineteenth and early twentieth-century scientists. This book describes the career of one such influential figure, the German-American researcher Jacques Loeb, whose novel and radical emphasis on reductionist experimentation continues to exert an impact on the field today.show more

Table of contents

Introduction; The shaping of a biologist; The engineering standpoint; New American environments; Evolution and experimentation; The invention of artificial parthenogenesis; Investigating animal behavior; The problems of a mechanistic conception of life; The Loebian influence in American biology; Notes; Key to manuscript citations; Index; Photographs.show more

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