Ernst Mayr and "Life"

Les Kaufman lesk at BIO.BU.EDU
Mon Sep 13 09:43:44 CDT 1999

I think Ken is right about the three domains.  It is now being taught as
dogma in intro bio in many places.  Also, while prokaryote systematics is
indeed very important, interesting, and of practical value, I think that
the act of recognizing its importance has reinforced a dangerous swing
within biology away from greater appreciation of the full range of life,
to an increasingly pathological overfocussing of research resources and
dollars on things miniscule.  Instead of a broader embrace, a further
justification for narrow reductionism and the use of molecular tools that
have now become much more accessible, convenient, and data-rich than
modern ecological and evolutionary work on plants and animals
incorporating the full range of questions, approaches and tools.

Les Kaufman
Boston University Marine Program
lesk at
617-353-5560 office
617-353-6965 lab
617-353-6340 fax

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