Natural Science JSA Lecture

Natural Science JSA - Natural Science Lecture#1 The History of an Idea 09:54:00 ← Early History of Biology • Biodiversity and Classification o

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Unformatted text preview: Natural Science Lecture #1 The History of an Idea 10/09/2007 09:54:00 ← Early History of Biology • Biodiversity and Classification o Complex Anatomy Meaningful Structure Form follows function how impact affects form and function • Observable, but how does it come together? • o Unifying theme of biological study: EVOLUTION o How did philosophies of biological change originate and change over time? o How to explain biodiversity? Open question Led to early models of classification Unit of classification: SPECIES • Aristotle (384-322 BC) o Part of Greek naturalism (seeking rational explanations for physical phenomena) o The first person to (attempt) classify organisms o Formed groups of organisms after examining them anatomically o Different anatomy = different classification o Ranked organisms from simple to complex: The Scala Naturae A ranking system based on naked eye view of anatomical complexity Plato's essentialism everything created for a place, or rank Species are external because each species breeds true to form i.e., Fixity of Species • Fixity of Species o Every species breeds true to form o Larson calls this “the traditional Aristotelean view of species” • Dioscorides (40-90 CE) o Military doctor o Named plants in alphabetical order in classic work De Materia Medica o Very widely used up to the Renaissance o Precursor to modern pharmacology o Naming and classification of plants by medicinal USE o Medieval copyists WILD inaccuracies • Christian World View o Importance of the revealed word (WORD, not evidence of the senses, constituted reality) o Static world, of short duration o Fixity of species, special creation of individual species o Scala Naturae adapted as Great Chain of Being • James Ussher (1580-1665) o Archbishop of Armagh, one of the greatest scholars of his time o His library formed the nucleus of Trinity College, Dublin o World created on October 26, 4004 BCE (9am?) • The Enlightenment o Intellectual revolution of the 15 th-18 th centuries o Rediscovery of Greek writings o Protestant Reformation interpretation by the individual o first steps towards people thinking on their own o Philosophies of Francis Bacon and Rene Descartes: scientific method, empirical evidence, mechanical world view o What about Biology? • European Voyages of Discovery o Part of commercial/trading revolution at the start of the Enlightenment Era o New and strange species of plants and animals o How to classify them?...
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This note was uploaded on 04/29/2008 for the course CGS NS101 taught by Professor Van gorsel during the Fall '08 term at BU.

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Natural Science JSA - Natural Science Lecture#1 The History of an Idea 09:54:00 ← Early History of Biology • Biodiversity and Classification o

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