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This penetrating case study of institution building and entrepreneurship in science shows how a minor medical speciality evolved into a large and powerful academic discipline. Drawing extensively on little-used archival sources, the author analyses in detail how biomedical science became a central part of medical training and practice. The book shows how biochemistry was defined as a distinct discipline by the programmatic vision of individual biochemists and of patrons and competitors in related disciplines. It shows how discipline builders used research programmes as strategies that they adapted to the opportunities offered by changing educational markets and national medical reform movements in the United States, Britain and Germany. The author argues that the priorities and styles of various departments and schools of biochemistry reflect systematic social relationships between that discipline and biology, chemistry and medicine. Science is shaped by its service roles in particular local contexts: This is the central theme. The author's view of the political economy of modern science will be of interest to historians and social scientists, scientific and medical practitioners, and anyone interested in the ecology of knowledge in scientific institutions and professions.
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- Date Published: November 2008
- format: Paperback
- isbn: 9780521090476
- length: 412 pages
- dimensions: 229 x 152 x 23 mm
- weight: 0.6kg
- availability: Available
Table of Contents
1. Introduction: On discipline history
2. Physiological chemistry in Germany, 1840–1900
3. Physiology and British biochemists, 1890–1920
4. General biochemistry: the Cambridge school
5. European ideals and American realities, 1870–1900
6. The reform of medical education in America
7. From medical chemistry to biochemistry: the emergence of a discipline
8. Unity in diversity: the American Society of Biological Chemists
9. The clinical connection: biochemistry as applied science
10. Chemical ideals and biochemical practice
11. Biological programs
12. Epilogue: Toward a molecular biology?
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