Reviving the Living: Meaning Making in Living Systemsby Yair Neuman
Pub. Date: 05/26/2008
Publisher: Elsevier Science
Modern biology portrays living systems, from the amoeba to the human organism, as mechanical toys shaped by the brute logic of natural selection. In "Reviving the Living": Meaning Making in Living Systems, Dr. Yair Neuman challenges the dogmas that frame our understanding of living systems and presents an alternative that avoids the pitfalls of non-scientific… See more details below
Modern biology portrays living systems, from the amoeba to the human organism, as mechanical toys shaped by the brute logic of natural selection. In "Reviving the Living": Meaning Making in Living Systems, Dr. Yair Neuman challenges the dogmas that frame our understanding of living systems and presents an alternative that avoids the pitfalls of non-scientific perspectives such as Vitalism and Creationism.
In this thought provoking and iconoclastic manuscript, Dr. Neuman follows the footsteps of Gregory Bateson, Mikhail Bakhtin, Michael Polanyi and others, to suggest that living systems are "meaning making" systems. Dr. Neuman delves into the unique processes of meaning making that characterize organisms as a unique category of nature, and presents new and fascinating insights into a variety of enigmatic biological phenomena from immune memory to hidden life (cryptobiosis).
Written by a polymath, Reviving the Living is a tour-de-force in interdisciplinary research which is of high interest to any reflective individual who is willing to examine the realm of the living from a novel and fascinating perspective.
• Presents a novel perspective that relates to current biological knowledge and issues
• Poses thought provoking ideas for theoretical biologists, those studying philosophy of science and the mind, cognitive scientists, semioticians, and people involved with Artificial Intelligence.
• Includes examples based in current science to illustrate core concepts and themes
Table of Contents
PART 1. HOW LOW CAN YOU GO? REDUCTIONISM AND ITS LIMITATIONS
Ch. 1: What is Reductionism?
Ch. 2: Who is Reading the Book of Life?
Ch. 3: Genetics: From Grammar to Meaning Making
Ch. 4: A Point for Thought: Why are Organisms Irreducible?
Ch. 5: A Point for Thought: Does the Genetic System Include a Meta-Language?
Ch. 6: Immunology: From Soldiers to Housewives?
Ch. 7: A Point for Thought: Immune Specificity and Brancusi's Kiss
Ch. 8: A Point for Thought: Reflections on the Immune Self
PART 2. WHAT IS THE MEANING OF THIS STORY?
Ch. 9: Meaning Making in Language and Biology
Ch. 10: God's Sacred Words
Ch. 11: It Means Nothing
Ch. 12: A Point for Thought: Meaning-Bridging the Gap Between Physics and Semantics
Ch. 13: The Rest is Silence
PART 3. ON THE WILD SIDE: FOUR LESSONS
Ch. 14: The Polysemy of the Sign: A Quantum Lesson
Ch. 15: Recursive-Hierarchy: A Lesson From the Tardigrade
Ch. 16: Context and Memory: A Lesson From Funes the Memorious
Ch. 17: Transgradience: A Lesson from Bakhtin
PART 4. FROM MECHANICS TO POIESIS
Ch. 18: The Poetry of Living
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