BooksHistory of Science

A Premodern Synthesis

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Science  24 Jan 2003:
Vol. 299, Issue 5606, pp. 516-517
DOI: 10.1126/science.1080779

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The Romantic Conception of Life. Science and Philosophy in the Age of Goethe. Robert J. Richards. University of Chicago Press, Chicago, 2002. 607 pp. $35, £24.50. ISBN 0-226-71210-9.

Richards explores the interdependency of the lives and ideas of the German Romantics and the development of their biology. He finds their work to lie at the roots of much of 19th-century biology, including Darwin's conceptions of nature and evolution.