Monday, May 9, 2011

Biomathematics and Literature

There is an article by Ian Stewart in The New Statesman on biomathematics, in which Stewart discusses how biological patterns that cannot be directly coded for by the DNA nevertheless emerge in biological organisms. Such patterns can range from spots and stripes to the layout of neurons -- and thus (in the latter case), are of vital importance to understanding the biological basis of literary production. With such investigations, chaos theory, fractal patterns, and (though not mentioned in the article) self-organization become increasingly important to understanding biology and evolution. As these things become more integrated into biology, literary Darwinism may end up taking a more Frederick Turner-esque turn.

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