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My many honors and awards


Philosophy of Science
Ernst Mayr Scientist
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We have a philosophy of science which turns out now to have been just simply a philosophy of physics. We have beginnings of a philosophy of biology, and we have the basic principles of such a philosophy of biology, but what… what will be and what is a philosophy of Science? Well, we are not quite sure yet, but it is certainly clear that the future philosophy of Science, in order to deserve this name, must be equally… must be able to fit biology just as well as it fits… fits physics. A complete philosophy of Science must include both the principles of physics and those of biology. And that is something that we should be striving for and I hope that the younger philosophers of philosophy will become sufficiently familiar with all the autonomous aspects of biology in order to be able to design a philosophy of Science that is… is equally fit for physics and for biology.

The late German-American biologist Ernst Mayr (1904-2005) was a leading light in the field of evolutionary biology, gaining a PhD at the age of 21. He was also a tropical explorer and ornithologist who undertook an expedition to New Guinea and collected several thousand bird skins. In 1931 he accepted a curatorial position at the American Museum of Natural History. During his time at the museum, aged 37, he published his seminal work 'Systematics and Origin of the Species' which integrated the theories of Darwin and Mendel and is considered one of his greatest works.

Listeners: Walter J. Bock

Walter J. Bock is Professor of Evolutionary Biology at Columbia University. He received his B.Sc. from Cornell and his M.A. and Ph.D. from Harvard. His research lies in the areas of organismal and evolutionary biology, with a special emphasis on functional and evolutionary morphology of the skeleto-muscular system, specifically the feeding apparatus of birds.

Tags: science, physics, biology

Duration: 1 minute, 14 seconds

Date story recorded: October 1997

Date story went live: 24 January 2008