Donald Forsdyke on Theories of Aging, Informational Aspects of DNA, and England’s Pasteur

When messengers are not authors of messages they bear, they should not be praised for the novelty of ideas in the messages. Donald Forsdyke (Queen’s University, Canada) has made a case that certain accolades bestowed upon Peter Medawar and Erwin Schrödinger for their respective contributions to theories of aging and of informational aspects of DNA, should rightly be assigned to the Victorian polymath, Samuel Butler (see Biological Theory 15, 50-55). Forsdyke has extensive webpages on Samuel Butler, George Romanes, William Bateson and – of particular significance in light of COVID-19 – Romanes’ mentor, John Burdon Sanderson (1828-1905). The account in the 1860s of the rapidly spreading cattle plague (rinderpest) by “England’s Pasteur” was scrutinized by the politicians no less intently than they today scrutinize accounts of the rapidly spreading coronavirus. Visit the website.