Eugenics and the Rise of Population Genetics

The history of eugenics in early 20th century science must be addressed because of the sheer magnitude of its influence in the science and the politics of this era, its relation to the science of genetics that was to come, and because it provides such a strong example of the guiding model of this book of the inextricable connections between ideology, politics, and biology.

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Epigenetics and Public Policy: The Tangled Web of Science and Politics

The cover art for my forthcoming book Epigenetics and Public Policy: The Tangled Web of Science and Politics has been approved, and a tentative release date set (January 2018). Stay tuned here, as I will post excerpts and work in progress as I finish the writing of this book. "This book comprehensively considers the political implications of … Continue reading Epigenetics and Public Policy: The Tangled Web of Science and Politics

The Reception of Epigenetics: More like Mendel or Darwin?

My name is Shea Robison. (Follow me on Twitter at @EpigeneticsGuy and see my academic profile at Academia.edu) As is well known, Darwin’s theory of evolution presented fundamental challenges to many of the prevailing core beliefs and values of the mid-1800s. These fundamental ontological challenges account for the significant scientific and ecclesiastical opposition which greeted the publication of On … Continue reading The Reception of Epigenetics: More like Mendel or Darwin?

The Trans-ideological Potential of Epigenetics

by Shea Robison (@EpigeneticsGuy) As discussed repeatedly on this blog, epigenetics is a rapidly emerging field of research akin to genetics but with some substantial differences. In addition to the differences in the sciences of genetics and epigenetics—which differences are more a function of the ontological assumptions of each than the actual science—there are significant differences in … Continue reading The Trans-ideological Potential of Epigenetics

The History of Epigenetics and the Science of Social Progress

by Shea Robison (@EpigeneticsGuy) The importance of Jean-Baptiste Lamarck and of Lamarckism in the contemporary debates about epigenetics and genetics is difficult to overstate, primarily because one of the most common epithets used against contemporary epigenetics is that it is ‘Lamarckian’, which distinction is deemed sufficient to dismiss any subsequent discussion. As discussed here, such references demonstrate fundamental misunderstandings of … Continue reading The History of Epigenetics and the Science of Social Progress

Epigenetics and the Ideology of ‘Nature’ versus ‘Nurture’

by Shea Robison (@EpigeneticsGuy) As discussed in a previous post and in this conference paper on epigenetics and the causal narratives of obesity, there are important congruencies between causal narratives (i.e., stories about why things do or do not happen) and ideology. These congruencies explain why ideological conservatives tend to prefer narratives of individual responsibility while liberals prefer … Continue reading Epigenetics and the Ideology of ‘Nature’ versus ‘Nurture’

“Understanding the Impact of Epigenetics” podcast

by Shea Robison (@EpigeneticsGuy) Understanding the Impact of Epigenetics podcast Below are links to posts and papers I mention in this podcast about epigenetics and health that I participated in as a panel member hosted by the health and fitness website BreakingMuscle.com: When it Comes to Epigenetics, How Much Fun is Too Much? Comment and Reply Epigenetics By Any Other Name? What … Continue reading “Understanding the Impact of Epigenetics” podcast