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KLI Colloquium by Lynn CHIU
2017-09-29
Life Enabled: A General Principle of Biological Identity

In almost all domains of the life sciences, major historical debates are dominated by a division between internalists vs. externalists schools of thought (Gould 1977, Wilson 2004, 2005, Godfrey-Smith 1996, Bechtel and Richardson 1993/2010). Internalists and externalists have argued over nature (genetics) vs. nurture (culture), the content and vehicles of mental states, the causes of biological forms and function, the sources of adaptive evolution, the specification of immune self-recognition, the development of language, etc.

Lynn Chiu sketches out the basis of a future research proposal. The goal is to identify and characterize a general principle in biology and show how it can reconcile the internal vs. external dichotomy.