Book Cover
Author Ceccarelli, Leah.

Title Shaping science with rhetoric : the cases of Dobzhansky, Schrödinger, and Wilson / Leah Ceccarelli
Published Chicago : University of Chicago Press, [2001]
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Description 1 online resource (xi, 204 pages) : illustrations
Contents 1 Inspiring Interdisciplinarity 1 -- Texts That Seek to Catalyze Community: An Unexamined Genre of Science 3 -- Close Textual-Intertextual Analysis: Combining Rhetorical Criticism and Historical Research 6 -- I Theodosius Dobzhansky's Genetics and the Origin of Species -- 2 Initiator of the Evolutionary Synthesis: Historians and Scientist Weigh In 13 -- Conflict between Disciplines and Theories 15 -- Evolutionary Synthesis 19 -- What Launched the Synthesis? 21 -- Influence of Dobzhansky's Genetics and the Origin of Species 24 -- Prelude to a Rhetorical Reading 29 -- 3 A Text Rhetorically Designed to Unite Competing Fields 31 -- Simplifying Theory 31 -- Surveying the Results of Research 37 -- Using Language That Promotes Conceptual Change 41 -- Addressing Social Concerns 45 -- II Erwin Schrodinger's What Is Life? The Physical Aspect of the Living Cell -- 4 "Uncle Tom's Cabin" of the Molecular Biology Revolution: Assessing the Place of a Text in History 61 -- Influence of Schrodinger's Text 63 -- Value of Untrue, Unoriginal Science 67 -- Other Laws of Physics 75 -- Prelude to a Rhetorical Reading 80 -- 5 A Text Rhetorically Designed to Negotiate Different Interests and Beliefs 82 -- Comparison with Other Attempts at Inspiring Interdisciplinary Work 83 -- Negotiating Common Ground: The Value of Precision 89 -- Negotiating Professional Goals: The Appeal to Ambition 90 -- Negotiating Disciplinary Linguistic Practices: Conceptual Chiasmus 92 -- Negotiating Ideological Commitments: Strategic Ambiguity 97 -- III Edward O. Wilson's Consilience: The Unity of Knowledge -- 6 Controversy over Sociobiology: Scholars Offer Conflicting Explanations 113 -- Wilson's Purpose 113 -- Effect of Wilson's Interdisciplinary Appeals 116 -- Explanation 1: Wilson Is Wrong; The Cultural Divide Should Not Be Bridged 119 -- Explanation 2: Critics Are Unable to See the Truth Because of Political Bias 121 -- Prelude to a Rhetorical Reading 124 -- 7 A Text Rhetorically Designed to Fuel Interdisciplinary Hostilities 128 -- A Rhetoric of Conquest, Not Negotiation 129 -- An Explicit Commitment to Reductionism 139 -- Equivocation Rather Than Productive Polysemy 145 -- What Wilson's Consilience Could Have Been 148 -- IV Speaking to Multiple Audiences -- 8 Genre 157 -- Comparison of Dobzhansky and Schrodinger 158 -- Wilson's Participation in the Genre 164 -- 9 Contributions to Four Ongoing Conversations 168 -- Rhetoric of Science 168 -- Rhetorical Inquiry 170 -- History of Science 177 -- Interdisciplinarity 179
Summary How do scientists persuade colleagues from diverse fields to cross the disciplinary divide, risking their careers in new interdisciplinary research programmes? Why do some attempts to inspire such research win widespread acclaim and support, while others do not? Leah Ceccarelli addresses such questions through close readings of three scientific monographs in their historical contexts. She examines the rhetorical strategies used in each book and evaluates which worked best, based on the reviews and scientific papers that followed in their wake
Bibliography Includes bibliographical references (pages 183-197) and index
Notes Print version record
Subject Dobzhansky, Theodosius, 1900-1975. Genetics and the origin of species
Schrödinger, Erwin, 1887-1961. What is life?
Wilson, Edward O. Consilience
Interdisciplinary approach to knowledge.
Interdisciplinary research.
Life sciences literature.
Interprofessional Relations.
Research Design.
Science -- history.
Form Electronic book
LC no. 00012179
ISBN 0226099083 (electronic bk.)
9780226099088 (electronic bk.)