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Title: 'Kind Historicism' & biological ontology
Author: Bartol, Jordan Nelson
ISNI:       0000 0004 5355 6512
Awarding Body: University of Leeds
Current Institution: University of Leeds
Date of Award: 2015
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This thesis develops a new theory of natural kinds for the biological world, called ‘Kind Historicism’, and addresses the relationship between natural kind theorizing and scientific reasoning. Applied to natural kinds and individuals in biology, Kind Historicism provides an ontology of the biological world. Discussions of biological ontology have struggled to balance insights from scientific practice with tools from analytic philosophy, metaphysics, and ontology. Ontological questions and practical/epistemic questions are often entangled. This thesis separates the two enquires, explaining why an ontological account of ‘what-there-is’ in biology should not straightforwardly dictate scientific categories, objects, or concepts. More precisely this thesis provides, in two parts, the development of Kind Historicism in light of discussions of natural kinds, essentialism, and monism, followed by the application of Kind Historicism to the natural kind status of biochemicals and to the problem of biological individuality. Finally, the success of Kind Historicism is measured against its ability to account for ‘intrinsic heterogeneity’ and ‘theoretical pluralism’, features of the biological world and science, respectively, believed to preclude biological natural kinds.
Supervisor: Radick, Greg ; Saatsi, Juha Sponsor: Not available
Qualification Name: Thesis (Ph.D.) Qualification Level: Doctoral
EThOS ID:  DOI: Not available