Purpose and desire: what makes something "alive" and why modern Darwinism has failed to explain it

Book Cover
Average Rating
Publisher:
HarperOne,
Pub. Date:
2017.
Language:
English
Description

A professor, biologist, and physiologist argues that modern Darwinism’s materialist and mechanistic biases have led to a scientific dead end, unable to define what life is—and only an openness to the qualities of "purpose and desire" will move the field forward.

Scott Turner contends. "To be scientists, we force ourselves into a Hobson’s choice on the matter: accept intentionality and purposefulness as real attributes of life, which disqualifies you as a scientist; or become a scientist and dismiss life’s distinctive quality from your thinking. I have come to believe that this choice actually stands in the way of our having a fully coherent theory of life."

Growing research shows that life's most distinctive quality, shared by all living things, is purpose and desire: maintain homeostasis to sustain life. In Purpose and Desire, Turner draws on the work of Claude Bernard, a contemporary of Darwin revered among physiologists as the founder of experimental medicine, to build on Bernard’s "dangerous idea" of vitalism, which seeks to identify what makes "life" a unique phenomenon of nature. To further its quest to achieve a fuller understanding of life, Turner argues, science must move beyond strictly accepted measures that consider only the mechanics of nature.

A thoughtful appeal to widen our perspective of biology that is grounded in scientific evidence, Purpose and Desire helps us bridge the ideological evolutionary divide.

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ISBN:
9780062651563
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full_title purpose and desire what makes something alive and why modern darwinism has failed to explain it
author turner j scott
grouping_category book
lastUpdate 2017-09-23 06:18:27AM

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author Turner, J. Scott, 1951-
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display_description "SUNY professor, biologist, and physiologist J. Scott Turner argues that modern Darwinism's materialist and mechanistic biases have led to a scientific dead end, unable to define what life is--and only an openness to the qualities of "purpose and desire" will move the field forward. Turner surveys the history of evolutionary thought, identifying "purpose and desire" as the keys to a coherent science of life and its evolution. In Purpose and Desire, Turner draws on the work of Claude Bernard, a contemporary of Darwin revered as the founder of experimental physiology. Turner builds on Bernard's "dangerous idea" of homeostasis, a radical proposition for what makes "life" a unique phenomenon in nature. To fully understand life, including its evolution, Turner argues that we must move beyond strictly enforced boundaries of mechanism and materialism to explore living nature as distinctly purposeful and driven by desire."--Jacket flap.
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physical xvi, 332 pages : illustrations ; 24 cm.
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subject_facet Evolution (Biology), Homeostasis, Life (Biology) -- Philosophy, Life (Biology) -- Philosophy -- History
table_of_contents The pony under the tree -- Biology's second law -- Many little lives -- A clockwork homeostasis -- A mad dream -- The barrier that wasn't -- The reverse Pinocchio -- A multiplicity of memory -- One is the friendliest number -- The hand of whatever -- Plato Street -- Epilogue: Evolution, purpose, and desire.
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time_since_added 2 Months, Month, Quarter, Six Months, Week, Year
title Purpose and desire : what makes something "alive" and why modern Darwinism has failed to explain it
title_display Purpose and desire : what makes something "alive" and why modern Darwinism has failed to explain it
title_full Purpose and desire : what makes something "alive" and why modern Darwinism has failed to explain it / J. Scott Turner
title_short Purpose and desire :
title_sort purpose and desire what makes something "alive" and why modern darwinism has failed to explain it
title_sub what makes something "alive" and why modern Darwinism has failed to explain it