When genetics was considered a bourgeois pseudoscience

When genetics was considered a bourgeois pseudoscience

genetic did not always have the acceptance and recognition it has today, it was even considered a pseudoscience in the Stalinist USSR.

currently, the genetic href=”http://hipertextual.com/tag/genetica”> is considered a pillar in biology and science itself . It is almost shocking to think that in the last century, specifically in the then USSR, and political considerations will be considered as pseudoscience and was persecuted and imprisoned one of the most prestigious scientists who based their studies on it.

This is the case of Nikolai Vavilov , renowned for its botanical studies and genetic focused on improving agricultural processes. A Vavilov is owed the still current, theory of centers of origin of cultivated plants . Through its research and expeditions in various countries made an impressive collection of plants and seeds that today is considered one of the largest collections of plant genetics in the world.

Nikolai Vavilov development the theory of the centers of origin of the plants

Vavilov worked with William Bateson in England in the development of genetics in one of his many expeditions; which they ranged from Central Asia, America, Middle East, Africa, China, Japan, the Mediterranean, Spain; also he visited Mexico and South America. As lines mentioned above, this member of the Office of Applied Agriculture, achieved with these trips an impressive collection of plants and seeds , as well as knowledge about the various agricultural processes in order to improve themselves in their country of origin.

Nikolai Ivanovich Vavilov

Nikolai Ivanovich Vavilov

During 1921 and until 1940 was director of the Lenin Academy of Agricultural Sciences in Leningrad (St. Petersburg) and applied studies were reflected in the experimental stations were distributed throughout the territory of the USSR. Everything was in this order until the arrival of Stalin to power and the growing influence of Trofim Lysenko . The latter an agronomist who was opposed to studies of Vavilov using their own scientific power to revile and also align ideologically to orthodoxism of the Stalinist era

Lysenkismo refers to this man who based its studies on Lamarckism, specifically the mechanism known as “inheritance of acquired characteristics “, in short, it refers to the ability of organisms to transfer inheritance characters acquired in life. With this in mind, Lysenko claimed it was not necessary to bring plants or seeds from other countries because in the USSR was necessary for the blossom field, as was required in this tough time.

the alleged scientific evidence was used to justify the political discourse of the time

most disturbing of this story lies in the forced alignment of science to political speeches and ideological , reaching acts as atrocious as what happened to Vavilov, who first banned back out of the USSR, then jailed in 1940 and sentenced to death for his “anti-Soviet” activities; his punishment was eventually commuted to 10 years hard labor, which would not be achieved because Vavilov would die in prison in 1943, ensures malnutrition.

So it was in those years that genetics was classified as a “bourgeois pseudoscience” by object to the dominant ideological trend and were pursued its greatest exponent in the USSR. Meanwhile, Lysenko could not get what he promised with its procedures and even fell in scams and corruption of data in their research .

Years later, the name and legacy of Vavilov were vindicated in history. In 1968 he was given the name Institute N.I. Vavilov to hitherto Institute of Applied Botany Leningrad and finally recognized the great value of his work, although interrupted by the political orthodoxism at the time, continues and his theories are still accepted.


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When genetics was considered a bourgeois pseudoscience
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