The Cold War Politics of Genetic Research: An Introduction to the Lysenko Affair

Front Cover
Springer Science & Business Media, Feb 13, 2012 - Science - 186 pages
0 Reviews
This book uses the reaction of a number of biologists in the United States and Great Britain to provide an overview of one of the most important controversies in Twentieth Century biology, the “Lysenko Affair.” The book is written for advanced undergraduate and graduate students of history/history of science. It covers a number of topics which are relevant to understanding the sources and dimensions of the Lysenko controversy, including the interwar eugenics movement, the Scopes Trial, the popularity of Lamarckism as a theory of heredity prior to the synthesis of genetics and Natural Selection, and the Cold War. The book focuses particularly on portrayals—both positive and negative—of Lysenko in the popular press in the U.S. and Europe, and thus by extension the relationship between scientists and society. Because the Lysenko controversy attracted a high level of interest among the lay community, it constitutes a useful historical example to consider in context with current topics that have received a similar level of attention, such as Intelligent Design or Climate Change.

What people are saying - Write a review

We haven't found any reviews in the usual places.


Chapter 1 MendelistMorganists and Michurinism
Chapter 2 Between World War and Cold War
Chapter 3 Reacting to Lysenko
Chapter 4 Acquired Characteristics
Chapter 5 The Spitzer Affair
Chapter 6 Pigs Wearing Booties Earn Scorn of Red Press
Epilogue Nikita and I have our difficulties

Other editions - View all

Common terms and phrases

About the author (2012)

Introduction,Chapter 1: Mendelist-Morganists and Michurinism, Chapter 2: Fly Lovers and People Haters, Chapter 3: The Eugenics Movement and First Encounters with Soviet Science Chapter 4: Vavilov , Chapter 5: Between World War and Cold War , Chapter 6: Debunking Lysenko, Chapter 7: The VASKhNIL Conference, Chapter 8: Acquired Characteristics, Chapter 9: “Apostle Trofim and the Gospel of St. Marx”, Chapter 10: The Spitzer Affair, Chapter 11: “He must’ve realized how stupid it all was...” , Chapter 12: Pigs Wearing Booties Earn Scorn of Red Press, Chapter 13: French Say Chemical Injection May Change Heredity of Ducks, Chapter 14: “Nikita and I have our difficulties...” Conclusion

Bibliographic information