This is an introduction to a collection of articles on the conceptual history of epigenesis, from Aristotle to Harvey, Cavendish, Kant and Erasmus Darwin, moving into nineteenth-century biology with Wolff, Blumenbach and His, and onto the twentieth century and current issues, with Waddington and epigenetics. The purpose of the topical collection is to emphasize how epigenesis marks the point of intersection of a theory of biological development and a (philosophical) theory of active matter. We also wish to show that the concept of epigenesis existed prior to biological theorization and that it continues to permeate thinking about development in recent biological debates.

Introduction: sketches of a conceptual history of epigenesis

Charles Wolfe
2018

Abstract

This is an introduction to a collection of articles on the conceptual history of epigenesis, from Aristotle to Harvey, Cavendish, Kant and Erasmus Darwin, moving into nineteenth-century biology with Wolff, Blumenbach and His, and onto the twentieth century and current issues, with Waddington and epigenetics. The purpose of the topical collection is to emphasize how epigenesis marks the point of intersection of a theory of biological development and a (philosophical) theory of active matter. We also wish to show that the concept of epigenesis existed prior to biological theorization and that it continues to permeate thinking about development in recent biological debates.
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Utilizza questo identificativo per citare o creare un link a questo documento: https://hdl.handle.net/10278/3719091
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