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In Mendel's Mirror: Philosophical Reflections on Biology Paperback – Feb 18 2003


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Product Details

  • Paperback: 410 pages
  • Publisher: Oxford University Press (March 15 2003)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0195151798
  • ISBN-13: 978-0195151794
  • Product Dimensions: 23.1 x 3 x 15.2 cm
  • Shipping Weight: 599 g
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: #510,705 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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Review

"What is most striking about the book is its uniformly high quality; although the volume runs to nearly four hundred pages, there are no space fillers here - each essay is substantive, penetrating, and authoritative. . . . In Mendel's Mirror performs the valuable service of collecting together some of the finest essays in philosophy of biology written in the past two decades, and gives a fascinating insight into Kitcher's intellectual development over that period."--Notre Dame Philosophical Reviews

"What is most striking about the book is its uniformly high quality; although the volume runs to nearly four hundred pages, there are no space fillers here - each essay is substantive, penetrating, and authoritative.... In Mendel's Mirror performs the valuable service of collecting together some of the finest essays in philosophy of biology written in the past two decades, and gives a fascinating insight into Kitcher's intellectual development over that period."--Notre Dame Philosophical Reviews

"Reading these papers together in one volume drives home just how impressive Kitcher's contribution to our field is. This volume will undoubtedly stimulate debate and provide fuel for new research programs in philosophy of biology."--Stephen M. Downes, Biology and Philosophy

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Toward the end of their paper announcing the molecular structure of DNA, James Watson and Francis Crick remark, somewhat laconically, that their proposed structure might illuminate some central questions of genetics Read the first page
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Amazon.com: 2 reviews
2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
First Rate! April 21 2008
By rdf - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
The method behind most of these essays is: pose a question, posit a set of answers that covers the space of possible answers, examine how the shape of (biological/evolutionary) outcomes can discriminate between them, then look at the data to see what fits.

The essays are succinct, clear and often use either approximate equations or the results of simulation runs to assist the analysis -- very little "armchair" stuff here.

The only essay that I found a bit gratuitous was the one on "Born Again Creationism" which was (thankfully) much more salient in 2003 than it is today.
5 of 7 people found the following review helpful
Flawed Kindle Edition March 11 2010
By M. North - Published on Amazon.com
Verified Purchase
I want to warn others away from the Kindle edition of this very valuable book. The Kindle edition is poorly scanned and frequently inaccurate and/or unreadable. The text won't scale properly, and it's blobby and ugly at the default size. Worse yet, there are numerous typos. At one point Hydra comes out as something like I- lydi a. Many of the footnote numbers can't be read and some are in the wrong places. It would be nice if the index and footnotes were linked so that they could be used, but so few Kindle texts do this it's probably not worth mentioning. OUP should be ashamed.


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