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Theoria. Revista de Teoría, Historia y Fundamentos de la Ciencia

Volume 36, Issue 3, September 2021

Miguel Escribano CabezaOrcid-ID
Pages 421-437

La idea de epigénesis en la obra de W. Harvey. Una lectura organicista

This paper takes an organicist perspective of W. Harvey’s conception of epigenesis in his work Exercitationes de generatione animalium (1651). In line with this reading, I provide a critical assessment of the different interpretations (mechanistic or vitalist) of Harvey’s idea of epigenesis. The English physician develops his conception of embryogenesis as a process that cannot be understood from the categories of human art, as is apparent in his criticisms towards his teacher, Fabricius. Nor is it accurate to say that his position is animistic. An immersion in this last question will show us his organic conception of the soul, as an extension of the Aristotelian-Galenic tradition.