Vitalism Revisited: History, Philosophy, Biology

March 21, 2008

Opening Remarks: Robert Mitchell (English, Duke)


Stefan Helmreich (Anthropology, MIT): “Life Forms at Three Extremes”;  Comment: Tim Lenoir (Jenkins Chair, Duke)

Joan Steigerwald (Science and Technology Studies, York U, Canada);  “Figuring the Organism in Late 18th Century Germany: From Vital Forces to Instrumental Languages”; Comment: Robert Mitchell (English, Duke)

Susan Oyama (Emerita, CUNY): “Biologists Behaving Badly: Vitalism and the Language of Language”; Comment: Daniel McShea (Biology and Philosophy, Duke)

Round Table: Robert Brandon (Philosophy and Biology, Duke); Thomas Pfau (English and German, Duke); Güven Güzeldere (Philosophy and Cognitive Neuroscience); Moderator: Barbara Herrnstein Smith (Comparative Literature and English, Duke)


Co-Sponsors: the Franklin Humanities Institute, the English Department, and the Program in the History and Philosophy of Science, Technology and Medicine. 

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