Rasmus Winther, "Our Genes: A Philosophical Perspective on Human Evolutionary Genomics" (Cambridge UP, 2023)


Situated at the intersection of natural science and philosophy, Our Genes: A Philosophical Perspective on Human Evolutionary Genomics (Cambridge University Press, 2023) explores historical practices, investigates current trends, and imagines future work in genetic research to answer persistent, political questions about human diversity. Readers are guided through fascinating thought experiments, complex measures and metrics, fundamental evolutionary patterns, and in-depth treatment of exciting case studies. The work culminates in a philosophical rationale, based on scientific evidence, for a moderate position about the explanatory power of genes that is often left unarticulated. Simply put, human evolutionary genomics - our genes - can tell us much about who we are as individuals and as collectives. However, while they convey scientific certainty in the popular imagination, genes cannot answer some of our most important questions. Alternating between an up-close and a zoomed-out focus on genes and genomes, individuals and collectives, species and populations, Our Genes argues that the answers we seek point to rich, necessary work ahead.

Rasmus Grønfeldt Winther is a philosopher of science, researcher, writer, educator, diver, and explorer. He is Professor of Humanities at University of California, Santa Cruz and Affiliate Professor of Transformative Science at the GLOBE Institute at University of Copenhagen.

Caleb Zakarin is editor at the New Books Network.

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Caleb Zakarin

Caleb Zakarin is the Editor of the New Books Network.

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