ISBN-10:
0822943190
ISBN-13:
9780822943198
Pub. Date:
03/01/2008
Publisher:
University of Pittsburgh Press
Ending the Mendel-Fisher Controversy

Ending the Mendel-Fisher Controversy

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Overview

In 1865, Gregor Mendel presented "Experiments in Plant Hybridisation," after eight years of studying the principles of inheritance through experimentation with pea plants. Overlooked in its day, Mendel's work would later become the foundation of modern genetics. Did his pioneering research follow the rigors of real scientific inquiry, or were Mendel's results too good to be true-the product of doctored statistics?

In Ending the Mendel-Fisher Controversy, leading experts present their conclusions on the legendary controversy surrounding the challenge to Mendel's findings by British statistician and biologist R. A. Fisher. In his 1936 paper "Has Mendel's Work Been Rediscovered?" Fisher suggested that Mendel's data could have been falsified in order to support his expectations. Fisher attributed the falsification to an unknown assistant of Mendel's. At the time, Fisher's criticism did not receive wide attention. Yet in 1964, nearing the centenary of Mendel's paper, scholars began to publicly discuss whether fisher had successfully proven that Mendel's data were falsified. Since that time, numerous articles, letters, and comments have been published on the controversy.

This volume contains an overview of the controversy; the original papers of Mendel and Fisher; four of the most important papers on the debate; and new updates, by the authors, of the latter four papers. Together, these voices argue for an end to the controversy-making this book the definitive last word on the subject.

About the Author:
Allen Franklin is professor in the Department of Physics at University of Colorado

About the Author:
A. W. F. Edwards was R. A. Fisher's last student.He is professor of biometry (emeritus) at Cambridge University

About the Author:
Daniel J. Fairbanks is professor of plant and wildlife sciences and dean of undergraduate education at Brigham Young University

About the Author:
Daniel L. Hartl is Higgins Professor of Biology in the Department of Organismic and Evolutionary Biology at Harvard University

About the Author:
Teddy Seidenfeld is H. A. Simon Professor of Philosophy and Statistics in the Department of Philosophy at Carnegie Mellon University

Product Details

ISBN-13: 9780822943198
Publisher: University of Pittsburgh Press
Publication date: 03/01/2008
Series: Pitt Illuminations Series
Pages: 368
Product dimensions: 6.00(w) x 9.00(h) x 1.00(d)

About the Author

Allan Franklin is professor in the Department of Physics at University of Colorado. He is the author of numerous books, including Are There Really Neutrinos? An Evidential History; Selectivity and Discord: Two Problems of Experiment; and No Easy Answers: Science and the Pursuit of Knowledge.

A. W. F. Edwards was R. A. Fisher's last student. He is professor of biometry (emeritus) at Cambridge University. His work includes Likelihood; Foundations of Mathematical Genetics; Pascal's Arithmetical Triangle: The Story of a Mathematical Idea; and Cogwheels of the Mind: The Story of Venn Diagrams.

Daniel J. Fairbanks is professor of plant and wildlife sciences and dean of undergraduate education at Brigham Young University. He is the author of Relics of Eden: The Powerful Evidence of Evolution in Human DNA and coauthor of Genetics: The Continuity of Life.

Daniel L. Hartl is Higgins Professor of Biology in the Department of Organismic and Evolutionary Biology at Harvard University. He has authored or coauthored twenty books including Human Genetics; Principles of Population Genetics; Primer of Population Genetics; Genetics: Analysis of Genes and Genomes; and Essential Genetics: A Genomics Perspective.

Teddy Seidenfeld
is H. A. Simon Professor of Philosophy and Statistics in the Department of Philosophy at Carnegie Mellon University. He is coauthor of Rethinking the Foundations of Statistics.

Table of Contents

Preface     ix
The Mendel-Fisher Controversy: An Overview   Allan Franklin     1
Experiments in Plant Hybridisation   Gregor Mendel     78
Has Mendel's Work Been Rediscovered?   R. A. Fisher     117
Are Mendel's Results Really Too Close?   A. W. F. Edwards     141
Alternative Hypotheses and Fisher's The Design of Experiments   A. W. F. Edwards     164
Controversies in the Interpretation of Mendel's Discovery   Vitezslav Orel   Daniel L. Hartl     167
Amiable Wright and Suspicious Fisher on Mendel's "Personal Equation"   Daniel L. Hartl     208
P's in a Pod: Some Recipes for Cooking Mendel's Data   Teddy Seidenfeld     215
A Brief Account of a Trial Conducted at Pillsbury Labs, 2000-2001   Teddy Seidenfeld     258
Mendelian Controversies: A Botanical and Historical Review   Daniel J. Fairbanks   Bryce Rytting     264
Mendelian Controversies: An Update   Daniel J. Fairbanks     302
Probability, the Binomial Distribution, and Chi-square Analysis   Daniel J. Fairbanks     313
List of Contributors     325
Index     327

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