Magazine article American Forests

Reviewing Resources -- from Gaia to Selfish Genes: Selected Writings in the Life Sciences Edited by Connie Barlow

Magazine article American Forests

Reviewing Resources -- from Gaia to Selfish Genes: Selected Writings in the Life Sciences Edited by Connie Barlow

Article excerpt

From Gaia to Selfish Genes: Selected Writings in the Life Sciences, edited by Connie Barlow. MIT Press, 55 Hayward St., Cambridge, MA 02142-1399 (1993). Black-and-white illus., 273 pp. Softcover, $14.95.

In her preface the editor says her childhood fascination with "science as nature" was later "utterly quenched by schooling in science as facts." Science, of course, is neither. It is a process for investigating nature and proposing facts. It is professional skepticism whose purpose is understanding the universe. Unfortunately, science has become--for this editor, many young "scientists," and the writers in this anthology--either adversarial or romantic adventure, or both. Science has inspired many love affairs with nature, but it is a disservice to confuse what science is with what it inspires.

Gaia, of course, refers to the hypothesis suggested by James Lovelock and Lynn Margulis. Working on ways to detect life on Mars, they began to explore the interaction between life forms and atmospheric chemistry. …

Search by... Author
Show... All Results Primary Sources Peer-reviewed

Oops!

An unknown error has occurred. Please click the button below to reload the page. If the problem persists, please try again in a little while.