© 2014

Entangled Life

Organism and Environment in the Biological and Social Sciences

  • Gillian Barker
  • Eric Desjardins
  • Trevor Pearce

Part of the History, Philosophy and Theory of the Life Sciences book series (HPTL, volume 4)

Table of contents

  1. Front Matter
    Pages i-vi
  2. Gillian Barker, Eric Desjardins, Trevor Pearce
    Pages 1-9
  3. Historical Perspectives

  4. Contested Models

    1. Front Matter
      Pages 103-103
    2. Eric Desjardins, Gillian Barker, Joaquín Madrenas
      Pages 167-183
  5. Emerging Frameworks

    1. Front Matter
      Pages 185-185
    2. Rachael Brown
      Pages 237-260
    3. Kim Sterelny
      Pages 261-279

About this book


This volume explores the interactions between organisms and their environments and how this “entanglement” is a fundamental aspect of all life. It brings together the work and ideas of historians, philosophers, biologists, and social scientists, uniting a range of new perspectives, methods, and frameworks for examining and understanding the ways that organisms and environments interact.

The volume is organized into three main sections: historical perspectives, contested models, and emerging frameworks. The first section explores the origins of the modern idea of organism-environment interaction in the mid-nineteenth century and its development by later psychologists and anthropologists. In the second section, a variety of controversial models—from mathematical representations of evolution to model organisms in medical research—are discussed and reframed in light of recent questions about the interplay between organisms and environment. The third section investigates several new ideas that have the potential to reshape key aspects of the biological and social sciences.

Populations of organisms evolve in response to changing environments; bodies and minds depend on a wide array of circumstances for their development; cultures create complex relationships with the natural world even as they alter it irrevocably. The chapters in this volume share a commitment to unraveling the mysteries of this entangled life.


dialectical biology evolutionary theory niche contruction organism and environment organism-environment interaction philosophy of biology

Editors and affiliations

  • Gillian Barker
    • 1
  • Eric Desjardins
    • 2
  • Trevor Pearce
    • 3
  1. 1.Department of PhilosophyWestern UniversityLondonCanada
  2. 2.Department of PhilosophyWestern UniversityLondonCanada
  3. 3.Department of PhilosophyUniversity of North Carolina at CharlotteCharlotteUSA

Bibliographic information

  • Book Title Entangled Life
  • Book Subtitle Organism and Environment in the Biological and Social Sciences
  • Editors Gillian Barker
    Eric Desjardins
    Trevor Pearce
  • Series Title History, Philosophy and Theory of the Life Sciences
  • Series Abbreviated Title History, Philosophy
  • DOI
  • Copyright Information Springer Science+Business Media Dordrecht 2014
  • Publisher Name Springer, Dordrecht
  • eBook Packages Humanities, Social Sciences and Law Philosophy and Religion (R0)
  • Hardcover ISBN 978-94-007-7066-9
  • Softcover ISBN 978-94-024-0009-0
  • eBook ISBN 978-94-007-7067-6
  • Series ISSN 2211-1948
  • Series E-ISSN 2211-1956
  • Edition Number 1
  • Number of Pages VI, 279
  • Number of Illustrations 15 b/w illustrations, 0 illustrations in colour
  • Topics Philosophy of Biology
    Evolutionary Biology
    History of Science
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