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Ärftlighetsforskningens gränser : individer och institutioner i framväxten av svensk genetik

Tunlid, Anna LU (2004) In Ugglan. Mineravserien 11.
Abstract (Swedish)
Popular Abstract in Swedish

Den moderna genetiken tar sin början kring sekelskiftet 1900 då de mendelska lagarna återupptäcktes. Den tidiga utvecklingen skedde i många länder i nära anslutning till den praktiska växtförädlingen, så även i Sverige där det redan fanns en framgångsrik växtförädling genom Sveriges utsädesförenings verksamhet i Svalöf. Här introducerade botanisten Herman Nilsson-Ehle mendelismen som en metod inom växtförädling i början av 1900-talet. År 1917 fick han en personlig professur i ärftlighetsläran (som ämnet kallades vid den här tiden) knuten till Lunds universitet, vilken huvudsakligen motiverades av hans verksamhet som växtförädlare. Nilsson-Ehle betonade ärftlighetsforskningens ekonomiska betydelse... (More)
Popular Abstract in Swedish

Den moderna genetiken tar sin början kring sekelskiftet 1900 då de mendelska lagarna återupptäcktes. Den tidiga utvecklingen skedde i många länder i nära anslutning till den praktiska växtförädlingen, så även i Sverige där det redan fanns en framgångsrik växtförädling genom Sveriges utsädesförenings verksamhet i Svalöf. Här introducerade botanisten Herman Nilsson-Ehle mendelismen som en metod inom växtförädling i början av 1900-talet. År 1917 fick han en personlig professur i ärftlighetsläran (som ämnet kallades vid den här tiden) knuten till Lunds universitet, vilken huvudsakligen motiverades av hans verksamhet som växtförädlare. Nilsson-Ehle betonade ärftlighetsforskningens ekonomiska betydelse för samhället och under hans tid som professor kom ärftlighetsforskningen att bedrivas i nära anslutning till praktisk växtförädling. År 1925 utnämndes han till föreståndare för utsädesföreningen i Svalöf, och i samband med detta kom universitetets institution för ärftlighetsforskning att förläggas dit. Flera av hans lärjungar kom emellertid att intressera sig för mer generella och teoretiska frågeställningar, i synnerhet frågor som rörde evolutionsbiologiska förhållanden. Då Nilsson-Ehle gick i pension 1938 efterträddes han av Arne Müntzing, sin före detta elev. Som nytillträdd professor beslutade Müntzing att bryta de starka banden mellan ärftlighetsforskningen och den praktiska växtförädlingen och i stället etablera ärftlighetsforskningen som en självständig disciplin i anslutning till andra naturvetenskapliga och medicinska discipliner vid Lunds universitet. Framväxten av genetiken som en akademisk disciplin i Sverige kan därför beskrivas i två olika faser. I den första fasen etablerades och utvecklades genetiken i nära anknytning till den praktisk växtförädlings intressen, vilket gav tillgång till viktiga resurser för den vetenskapliga verksamheten, men också kom att påverka val av forskningsinriktning. I den andra fasen av ämnets utveckling förändrades förhållandet till den praktiska växtförädlingen i syfte att skapa en självständig akademisk disciplin. Under denna process definierades ämnets gränser och innehåll på delvis skilda sätt för att därigenom legitimera verksamheten och erhålla nödvändiga resurser för disciplinens uppbyggnad. Genom att följa denna utveckling kan man se hur genetiken identiferades som dels ett teoretiskt ämne, dels ett ämne med stor betydelse för flera olika samhällsfrågor, till exempel växtförädling och rashygien. (Less)
Abstract
In the first part of the 20th century genetics developed into an important research field. The aim of this study is to follow and analyse the transformation of genetics from its origin within an agricultural context to an academic discipline in Sweden (ca. 1900-1960). Mendelism was introduced as a methodology in plant breeding at the plant breeding station in Svalöf during the first decade of the 20th century by Herman Nilsson-Ehle. He was given a personal professorship in genetics at Lund University in 1917, mainly due to his success in improving some economically important crop varieties. This was the first professorship in genetics in Sweden and for long time the only one. During his time as professor, Nilsson-Ehle continued to perform... (More)
In the first part of the 20th century genetics developed into an important research field. The aim of this study is to follow and analyse the transformation of genetics from its origin within an agricultural context to an academic discipline in Sweden (ca. 1900-1960). Mendelism was introduced as a methodology in plant breeding at the plant breeding station in Svalöf during the first decade of the 20th century by Herman Nilsson-Ehle. He was given a personal professorship in genetics at Lund University in 1917, mainly due to his success in improving some economically important crop varieties. This was the first professorship in genetics in Sweden and for long time the only one. During his time as professor, Nilsson-Ehle continued to perform genetic research with close connections to plant breeding. He also founded a strong research school of plant breeders and geneticists interested in more general biological and evolutionary issues. When he retired in 1938, his successor Arne Müntzing decided to break up the close association between plant breeding and genetics and establish genetics as an independent discipline of Lund University. The institutionalization of Swedish genetics can thus be described as a two stage process. In the first stage genetics developed within an agricultural context infused with strong practical interests. This directed the research toward particular problems of great value for society and increased the possibilities for the geneticists to obtain necessary resources. In the second stage the close connection between genetics and plant breeding had to be reconstructed in order to transform genetics into an autonomous academic discpline. In the analysis the concept of boundary-work as introduced by Thomas F. Gieryn is used. As an emerging discipline, genetics was constantly forced to define its territory and border to defend its scientific authority. This was done in different arenas - in the agricultural environment, in the academic system and in society at large - where different characteristics of genetics was emphasized with the overall aim to increase its legitimacy and obtain financial and institutional resources. The transformation of genetics from a practical to a theoretical science supports the idea of a heterogenous scientific landscape in Sweden during the first half of the 20th century, where research was performed in many different contexts and with widely varying aims. (Less)
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author
opponent
  • docent Kaiserfeld, Thomas, KTH, Stockholm
organization
alternative title
Boundary of Genetics : Individuals and Institutions in the Development of Swedish genetics
publishing date
type
Thesis
publication status
published
subject
keywords
Genetics, Vetenskapshistoria, History of science, Lund University, Svalöf, H. Nilsson-Ehle, A. Müntzing, A. Levan, Å. Gustafsson, institutionalization, boundary-work, discipline formation, History of genetics, history of plant breeding, cytogenetics, Genetik, cytogenetik
in
Ugglan. Mineravserien
volume
11
pages
380 pages
publisher
Department of Cultural Sciences, Lund University
defense location
Sal 201, Institutionen för kulturvetenskaper, Biskopsgatan 7 i Lund
defense date
2004-11-05 10:15
ISSN
1650-7339
ISBN
91-975196-0-X
language
Swedish
LU publication?
yes
id
a7a33492-b45c-4f31-854f-a7af0ca60e7c (old id 21735)
date added to LUP
2007-05-28 11:50:16
date last changed
2016-09-19 08:44:54
@phdthesis{a7a33492-b45c-4f31-854f-a7af0ca60e7c,
  abstract     = {In the first part of the 20th century genetics developed into an important research field. The aim of this study is to follow and analyse the transformation of genetics from its origin within an agricultural context to an academic discipline in Sweden (ca. 1900-1960). Mendelism was introduced as a methodology in plant breeding at the plant breeding station in Svalöf during the first decade of the 20th century by Herman Nilsson-Ehle. He was given a personal professorship in genetics at Lund University in 1917, mainly due to his success in improving some economically important crop varieties. This was the first professorship in genetics in Sweden and for long time the only one. During his time as professor, Nilsson-Ehle continued to perform genetic research with close connections to plant breeding. He also founded a strong research school of plant breeders and geneticists interested in more general biological and evolutionary issues. When he retired in 1938, his successor Arne Müntzing decided to break up the close association between plant breeding and genetics and establish genetics as an independent discipline of Lund University. The institutionalization of Swedish genetics can thus be described as a two stage process. In the first stage genetics developed within an agricultural context infused with strong practical interests. This directed the research toward particular problems of great value for society and increased the possibilities for the geneticists to obtain necessary resources. In the second stage the close connection between genetics and plant breeding had to be reconstructed in order to transform genetics into an autonomous academic discpline. In the analysis the concept of boundary-work as introduced by Thomas F. Gieryn is used. As an emerging discipline, genetics was constantly forced to define its territory and border to defend its scientific authority. This was done in different arenas - in the agricultural environment, in the academic system and in society at large - where different characteristics of genetics was emphasized with the overall aim to increase its legitimacy and obtain financial and institutional resources. The transformation of genetics from a practical to a theoretical science supports the idea of a heterogenous scientific landscape in Sweden during the first half of the 20th century, where research was performed in many different contexts and with widely varying aims.},
  author       = {Tunlid, Anna},
  isbn         = {91-975196-0-X},
  issn         = {1650-7339},
  keyword      = {Genetics,Vetenskapshistoria,History of science,Lund University,Svalöf,H. Nilsson-Ehle,A. Müntzing,A. Levan,Å. Gustafsson,institutionalization,boundary-work,discipline formation,History of genetics,history of plant breeding,cytogenetics,Genetik,cytogenetik},
  language     = {swe},
  pages        = {380},
  publisher    = {Department of Cultural Sciences, Lund University},
  school       = {Lund University},
  series       = {Ugglan. Mineravserien},
  title        = {Ärftlighetsforskningens gränser : individer och institutioner i framväxten av svensk genetik},
  volume       = {11},
  year         = {2004},
}