Ornithology, Evolution, and Philosophy: The Life and Science of Ernst Mayr 1904-2005

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Springer Science & Business Media, Aug 16, 2007 - Science - 474 pages
Ernst Mayr (1904–2005), eminent naturalist-systematist and ornithologist, “- chitect” of the Synthetic Theory of Evolution, leading evolutionary biologist and in?uential historian and philosopher of biology, was asked repeatedly by friends, associates, and peers to write an autobiography, but he always declined such s- gestions because he considered those of other people he knew as inadequate. Moreover, he could not very well talk about himself without bragging, which did not appeal to him. Who else has had a private dinner with the Emperor and - pressofJapan?WhoelsehashadhonorarydegreesfromtheUniversitiesofOxford, Cambridge, Harvard, the Sorbonne, Uppsala, and Berlin? And who else has been able to celebrate the 75th anniversary of his PhD? He also published several au- biographicalaccounts,dictatedcopiousautobiographicalnotes,andannotatedhis bibliography. I had the privilege of using these notes and, in addition, of asking him numerous questions, which he answered patiently in many personal letters. He supported the plan of a biography wholeheartedly from the beginning and reviewed a ?rst draft in detail. In many ways he should be considered a coauthor of this book. As a high school student and eager birdwatcher in Germany, I read Kramer’s (1948) extensive review of Mayr’s Systematics and the Origin of Species (1942e) and was impressed with the general evolutionary relevance of the discussions and conclusions in this book based, in large part, on his ornithological studies.
 

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Contents

Childhood and Youth
8
Birdwatching
15
The Duck with a Red Bill
22
University Student in Greifswald and Berlin
23
Friendships at School and University
33
The Budding Scientist
35
The Influence of Teachers
37
Erwin StresemannTeacher and Friend
39
Animal Species and Evolution 1963b
275
Behavior and Evolution
277
Particular Topics of Evolutionary Biology
278
Ernst Mayrthe Man
283
Health
301
The Farm near Wilton New Hampshire
306
Residence in Cambridge Massachusetts
310
Adviser to the National Academy of Sciences and the National Science Foundation
311

Assistant Curator at the Museum of Natural History in Berlin
42
Expeditions to New Guinea and the Solomon Islands 19281930
48
Ornithologist and Evolutionist in New York
92
The New York Years 19311953
93
Curator of Ornithology at the American Museum of Natural History
113
Ornithologist and Zoogeographer
140
Birds of Australiathe Malay Archipelago and Southeastern Asia
157
Descriptions of New Species and Subspecies of Birds
161
Zoogeography
163
Biological Species and SpeciationMayrs First Synthesis
183
Community Architect
232
Life in North America during World War II
242
Cold Spring Harbor Laboratory 19431952
243
Citizenship
250
Professor of Zoology at Harvard University
253
The Harvard Years 19532005
255
Teaching and PhD Students
259
Director of the Museum of Comparative Zoology 19611970
263
Evolutionary BiologyMayrs Second Synthesis
266
Integrated Gene Complexes versus Beanbag Genetics
273
National and International Recognition
313
Systematics and Classification
320
Classification
321
Zoological Nomenclature
332
History and Philosophy of BiologyMayrs Third Synthesis
338
History of Biology
340
Philosophy of Biology
360
Summary Appreciation of Ernst Mayrs Science
375
Acknowledgments
382
List of Abbreviations
384
References
385
Appendices
399
Curriculum Vitae including honorary degreeshonorary membershipsmedalsand other special awards
400
Bibliography of Ernst Mayr
406
List of Books by Ernst Mayr as AuthorCoauthor or Editor
453
Coauthorship
455
Subject Analysis of Ernst Mayrs Publications
456
Index
459
Copyright

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About the author (2007)

Jürgen Haffer was born in 1932. He majored in geology and paleontology obtaining a PhD degree at the University of Göttingen in 1957. He became an exploration geologist and lived in South and North America, Iran, Egypt, and Norway. During these assignments he studied the bird faunas of Amazonia and Iran and has been in close communication with Ernst Mayr since the early 1960s. He also co-published a biography of Erwin Stresemann, Mayr’s teacher and friend in Berlin, Germany.

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