The Evolutionary Synthesis: Perspectives on the Unification of Biology

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Ernst Mayr, William B. Provine
Harvard University Press, 1998 - Science - 487 pages
2 Reviews

Biology was forged into a single, coherent science only within living memory. In this volume the thinkers responsible for the "modern synthesis" of evolutionary biology and genetics come together to analyze that remarkable event.

In a new Preface, Ernst Mayr calls attention to the fact that scientists in different biological disciplines varied considerably in their degree of acceptance of Darwin's theories. Mayr shows us that these differences were played out in four separate periods: 1859 to 1899, 1900 to 1915, 1916 to 1936, and 1937 to 1947. He thus enables us to understand fully why the synthesis was necessary and why Darwin's original theory‚e"that evolutionary change is due to the combination of variation and selection‚e"is as solid at the end of the twentieth century as it was in 1859.

  

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Contents

GENETICS
51
CYTOLOGY
69
Cytogenetics and the NeoDarwinian Synthesis
86
The Modern Evolutionary Synthesis and the Biogenetic Law
112
The Role of Systematics in the Evolutionary Synthesis
123
BOTANY
137
PALEONTOLOGY
153
MORPHOLOGY
173
The Arrival of NeoDarwinism in France
321
Some Recollections Pertaining to the Evolutionary Synthesis
334
A Note on W L Towers Leptinotarsa Work
352
Hypotheses That Blur and Grow
383
EPILOGUE
399
BIOGRAPHICAL ESSAYS
413
Curt Stern
424
J B S Haldane R A Fisher and William Bateson
430

The Failure of Morphology to Assimilate Darwinism
180
SOVIET UNION
229
Sergei Chetverikov the Koltsov Institute
242
Introduction
279
A Comment
303
Morgan and His School in the 1930s
445
G G Simpson
452
CONTRIBUTORS
467
Copyright

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About the author (1998)

Ernst Mayr was Alexander Agassiz Professor of Zoology, Emeritus, at Harvard University. He was the recipient of numerous honorary degrees and awards, including the Crafoord Prize for Biology, the National Medal of Science, the Balzan Prize, and the Japan Prize.

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