Collating Caedmon: Editing Old English Texts and the by Rare Book & Manuscript Library

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But I pointedly wish to ask whether reductionism is truly all there is to science. Are we indeed satisfied with knowing so little about what transpires across the numerous levels separating the molecular genome from the organism? What if we have misappropriated efficient agency exclusively to the molecular realm, when, in fact, it is being exerted at intermediate levels? Playing with molecules and ignoring dynamics at the mesoscale could lead to gross misunderstandings, if not outright disaster.

The basic unit of selection is the individual organism, which somehow is endowed with being able to reproduce itself and to strive against others that might compete with it for finite resources (Haught 2003). " Those organisms that survived the rigors of natural selection until the time of reproduction got to pass their characteristics on to the next generation, members of which would repeat the scenario. Each offspring, while it closely resembled its parent(s), might differ from them in slight ways.

Nevertheless, just as we questioned the reconciliation purportedly effected by statistical mechanics, we justifiably might question whether the eager cohort of biologists that rushed to extrapolate Fisher's "grand synthesis" well beyond the very narrow confines of its assumptions may have acted with undue haste. A W i n d o w Closing Again? Momentum in Darwin's favor grew in the wake of Fisher's synthesis. Just two decades later, and soon after Schroedinger (1944) had speculated on the molecular character of the genome, Watson and Crick (1953) made their stunning description of the structure of the DNA molecule and how information could be encoded within it.

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