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Theses/Dissertations

2013

Biology

Messiah College

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Full-Text Articles in Life Sciences

Dueling Scientists And Dueling Historians: Controversy Over The External History Of Germ Theory, Glenn Jones May 2013

Dueling Scientists And Dueling Historians: Controversy Over The External History Of Germ Theory, Glenn Jones

Honors Projects and Presentations: Undergraduate

Louis Pasteur and Félix Pouchet, two scientists studying the fermentation of organic media, engaged in debate concerning spontaneous generation before the French Académie des sciences in 1864. This instance of clashing paradigms is thought to be one of the most important moments in the historical development and establishment of the germ theory of disease. But was this confrontation an example of truth prevailing through purely scientific discourse, or were other external factors at play in determining the course of the debate? A review of the literature reveals a controversy about this controversy, where historians of science disagree concerning the extent ...