Reinventing Biology

Reinventing Biology : Respect for Life and the Creation of Knowledge

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oRuth Hubbard and Lynda Birke have asked an important question: how would the practices of biology change if organisms were considered subjects with agency? They have gathered an array of excellent scholars and a broad spectrum of perspectives...this is a fresh question and one very much on the minds of many people.O NLonda Schiebinger What would the study of life be like if omanO were not given a special place? The contributors to Reinventing Biology begin to answer that question, exploring what biology would blook like if scientists gave more forethought and concern to the organisms with which they work. These essays address a broad spectrum of concerns: How are organisms raised, housed, and maintained, and what concern is given to using the minimum number needed to address the question at hand? What does it mean to raise animals or plants specifically as experimental resources? What guides the decisions about which animals are routinely bred for experimental purposesNdogs and cats are not, unlike guinea pigs, rats, and mice. What about experiments with owildO animals and the impact of such experimentation on natural populations? The questions raised here point to contradictions in present-day biological research: debates about the lines between nature and culture, subject and object, organisms and machinesNespecially as machines become more sophisticated. Reinventing Biology also addresses the status and social responsibility of scientists, as well as the social construction of science and onature.O The contributors are Arnold Arluke, Lynda Birke, Anne Fausto-Sterling, Ruth Hubbard, Emily Martin, Judith C. Masters, Donna Mergler, Karen Messing, Stuart A. Newman, Lesley J. Rogers, Hilary Rose, Boria Sax, Vandana Shiva, Marianne van den Wijngaard and Betty J. more

Product details

  • Paperback | 312 pages
  • 156.7 x 233.9 x 25.1mm | 597.18g
  • Indiana University Press
  • Bloomington, IN, United States
  • English
  • 0253209811
  • 9780253209818

Review quote

In many ways an exploration of human-other boundaries, Reinventing Biology explores the paradox of animals being similar enough to humans to serve as models but different enough to justify using and killing them. Much more than a book about animal welfare, it explores how the scientific questions and answers would be different if biology operated from a paradigm of respect for the objects of study. Thirteen contributions are arranged in four distinct sections; individual topics vary extensively but each is first-rate. The consequences of the distancing of objectivity are explored in the first section. The biographical accounts in the second section provide a refreshing contrast to much scientific writing and encourage readers to explore their own relationships to other organisms. The practice of biology is reviewed with authors asking what is really learned from some research, and is the knowledge worth the pain and suffering. The last section explores how boundaries between humans and others are being breached. A welcome addition to the literature critiquing science and an excellent resource for courses on the conceptual framework of science or objectivity in science. All levels.G. E. Stratton, Rhodes College, 1996mar more

About Lynda Birke

LYNDA BIRKE a biologist at the Centre for the Study of Women and Gender at the University of Warwick, is the author of Women, Feminism and Biology: The Feminist Challenge and Feminism, Animals and Science: The Naming of the Shrew. RUTH HUBBARD is Professor Emerita of Biology at Harvard University. Her most recent books are The Politics of Women s Biology, Exploding the Gene Myth (co-authored with Elijah Wald) and Profitable Promises: Essays on Women, Science and Health."show more

Table of contents

IntroductionNLynda Birke and Ruth Hubbard Part I: Exploitation of the oOtherO IntroductionNLynda Birke and Ruth Hubbard 1. Learning From the New Priesthood and the Shrieking Sisterhood: Debating the Life Sciences in Victorian EnglandNHilary Rose 2. oThe Rat CouldnOt Speak, But We Can:O Inhumanity in Occupational Health ResearchNKaren Messing and Donna Mergler 3. Democratizing BiologyNVandana Shiva Part II: Personal Accounts IntroductionNLynda Birke and Ruth Hubbard 4. On Keeping a Respectful DistanceNLynda Birke 5. The Logos of LifeNRuth Hubbard 6. More Than the Sum of Our PartsNBetty J. Wall Part III: Theorizing and Practice of Biology IntroductionNRuth Hubbard and Lynda Birke 7. Nature Is the Human Heart Made TangibleNAnne Fausto-Sterling 8. The Liberation of the Female RodentNMarianne van den Wijngaard 9. They Are Only AnimalsNLesley J. Rogers 10. Revolutionary Theory: Reinventing Our Origin MythsNJudith C. Masters Part IV: Border Crossings: Human/Animal, Live/Inanimate IntroductionNRuth Hubbard and Lynda Birke 11. Carnal Boundaries: The Commingling of Flesh in Theory and PracticeNStuart A. Newman 12. The Nazi Treatment of Animals and PeopleNArnold Arluke and Boria Sax 13. Working Across the Human-Other DivideNEmily martin EnvoiNRuth Hubbard and Lynda Birke About the Authorsshow more

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