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Here Canguilhem convincingly demonstrates the extent to which theorists and laboratory scientists alike are influenced by the compulsion to achieve results that will be consistent with distinctly nonscientific concepts. The role of ideology and the relationship between epistemology and history of science are confronted directly in a wide range of examples drawn from the history of the life sciences, from the scientific revolution to post Mendelian genetics. Canguilhem's writing is always clear and accessible. Balancing internal and external approaches and theory and example, he reveals as few other philosophers of science can the way in which scientists really work.