Biological Theory

, Volume 14, Issue 1, pp 69–72 | Cite as

A Natural Philosopher

Life Cycles: Reflections of an Evolutionary Biologist. John Tyler Bonner; Princeton University Press, Princeton, NJ, USA, 1993, 209 pp
  • Stuart A. NewmanEmail author
Book Review

Among the generation of biologists who began working about mid-century, John Tyler Bonner, Professor Emeritus of Biology at Princeton University, and author of Life Cycles, Reflections of an Evolutionary Biologist  (Princeton University Press) has been the prime keeper of a flame that few of his contemporaries realized had nearly become extinguished: the vision of an integrated life science, incorporating both development and evolution. During the early part of this century the fields of developmental and evolutionary biology diverged from one another to the detriment of each. The 19th century had seen sweeping generalizations about the relationship between development and evolution, ranging from Haeckel’s grandiose “biogenetic law” which held that ontogeny recapitulates phylogeny, to Von Baer’s more circumspect and pertinent observation that the more general characters of the large group of animals to which an embryo belongs appear earlier in development than the more distinctive...


Copyright information

© Konrad Lorenz Institute for Evolution and Cognition Research 2019

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Department of Cell Biology and AnatomyNew York Medical CollegeValhallaUSA

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