The essay deals with the final part of a project on the cultural history of heredity stretching from the early modern period to the present. The focus is on epistemological questions such as the establishment of genetics as a discipline, the phenotype/ genotype divide, and the relation between science and images of science on heredity. Three images of science connected to heredity are discussed: the image of the gene as an isolated entity, the image of information, and the image of map and mapping.
Heredity in the Twentieth Century: Some Epistemological Considerations
Hans-Jörg Rheinberger studied philosophy and biology in Tübingen and Berlin. He is a director at the Max Planck Institute for the History of Science in Berlin. His main current areas of research are the history and epistemology of experimentation and the history of the life sciences. Among his publications are Toward a History of Epistemic Things (1997), On Historicizing Epistemology (2010), An Epistemology of the Concrete (2010), and, with Staffan Müller-Wille, A Cultural History of Heredity (2012).
Hans-Jörg Rheinberger; Heredity in the Twentieth Century: Some Epistemological Considerations. Public Culture 1 September 2013; 25 (3 (71)): 477–493. doi: https://doi.org/10.1215/08992363-2144616
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