Richard A. Lockshin was born in Ohio and educated at Harvard. He taught at the University of Rochester School of Medicine and Dentistry and at St. John’s University (New York), where he is currently Professor Emeritus. His doctoral thesis, “Programmed cell death in an insect,” became one of the founding papers of the currently major research field of cell death and apoptosis. During his teaching career, he became deeply concerned about the means by which science is communicated to lay audiences. As chair of his department and member of the university-wide core curriculum committee, he argued that students needed to understand that science was a process, not a collection of facts, and he rewrote and taught the “Science for Non-Scientists” course. His experiences led to two volumes related to this blog: Born This Way: Becoming, Being and Understanding Scientists, Part 1. The Origins of Modern Biological Science, which addresses through anecdote and story the rise of idea of natural selection, and Part 2: The Practice of Science and the Rise of Molecular Biology, in which he discusses the rules of biological science and the social and intellectual activities that led to the birth and development of molecular biology and genetic engineering. Part 1 is available in electronic or print form through all major sources (e.g., Amazon, Barnes and Noble) as well as through other sources. Part 2 will be available in early 2014.
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