Huge product rangeOver 140,000 books & equipment products
Rapid shippingUK & Worldwide
Pay in £, € or U.S.$By card, cheque, transfer, draft
Exceptional customer serviceGet specialist help and advice
This book is the first detailed biography of Ernst Mayr (1904 - 2005). Ernst Mayr was the `architect' of the Synthetic Theory of Evolution, and the greatest evolutionary biologist since Charles Darwin (1809-1882), influential historian and philosopher of biology, outstanding, taxonomist and ornithologist, and naturalist. He is probably one of the most widely known biologists at all.
He started his career as an assistant curator at the Museum of Natural History in Berlin (1926-1930) and then went to the US to become curator of ornithology at the American Museum of Natural History in New York for 22 years (1931-1953). His second career started in 1953, when he became Alexander Agassiz Professor of Zoology at Harvard University (Cambridge, Massachusetts).
Mayr used the theories of natural selection and population thinking as theoretical models within the framework of historical biological studies. He suggested that various competing paradigms may exist side by side and more or less pronounced 'revolutions' may occur in different fields from time to time. Changes of concepts have a much stronger effect on the development of biological sciences than the discovery of new facts. Mayr was the first to emphasize the role of biopopulations, thereby pointing out the basic difference between 'population thinking' and typological essentialism. Population thinking takes into consideration the uniqueness of each individual and unlimited variation of populations which may lead to the development of new species. On the other hand, typologists assume that the unchanging essence of each species determines variation and fixed limits of variation preclude speciation from occurring except through saltation.
Jurgen Haffer was born in 1932. He majored in geology and paleontology obtaining a PhD degree at the University of Gottingen in 1957. He became an exploration geologist and lived in South and North America, Iran, Egypt, and Norway. During these assignments he studied the bird fauna of Amazonia and Iran and has been in close communication with Ernst Mayr since the early 1960s. He also co-published a biography of Erwin Stresemann, Mayr's teacher and friend in Berlin, Germany.