Video Lectures/debates: click on images below
Was the Watchmaker completely blind?
Book Launch at The Physiological Society in London November 2016
Reactions to launch lecture
"Naturally magisterial delivery"
"What a joy it was"
"the lions met a brick wall"
Podcasts on THETHINEND
New Trends in
Evolution and the one-eyed watchmaker
Video review on youtube
"Wonderful, wonderful, clearly summarized, clearly
well-thought-through & substantiated"
Denis Noble's new book echoes the title of The Music of Life,
but it is a very different book. The Music of Life
was an essay, using metaphors and stories to counter purely
gene-centric views of biology.
Dance to the Tune of Life is an entertaining journey
through the conceptual and experimental reasons for rethinking
the foundations of biology. If you want to understand the
principle of Biological Relativity and how it changes our views
of life and its evolution then this is the book for you.
The book incorporates all the experimental evidence laid out
Music of Life Sourcebook, and much more as the
experimental work in transgenerational epigenetics, natural
genetic engineering, computational systems biology, and the
physiological sciences generally, continues to blossom in an
explosion of evidence that cries out for a fundamental rethink
of the ways in which biology is interpreted for the general
Highly readable, yet fully source-referenced.
For the lay reader and the professional.
...it's great that a person of Noble's stature has taken the
time to write such a careful book...
has the potential for bringing new insights into economics,
sociology and many other disciplines (link
to complete Amazon.com review)
A revolution in understanding how evolution works.
This exciting new book is a magisterial overview of the latest
developments in understanding evolution.
(link to complete Amazon.co.uk review)
Link to Report on Royal Society-British Academy meeting on
(including NOBLE-SHUKER exchange)
'Among its many merits, this remarkable book deserves to
become a classic text in the philosophy of science.
Almost alone among philosophers of science, Noble is a
practising scientist; and unusually among practising
scientists, he is an accomplished philosopher. His book
brings out, with unparalleled clarity, how the
scientific endeavour involves not only empirical inquiry
but also conceptual structure. Noble shows how, on the
negative side, popular presentations of sound biological
results may be vitiated by bad metaphysics, and how, on
the positive side, science and philosophy may extend the
boundaries of knowledge by a unified epistemology. He
ends, however, with a salutary warning that there may
well be a limit to the human capacity to know the
answers to ultimate questions.'
Kenny, University of Oxford
'I think this a
marvellous book. Denis Noble emphasises that genes,
organs and systems dance to the tune of the organism its
social and physical environment. He sets the relativity
of biology in a remarkable scientific sweep, ranging
from cosmology to human belief systems. He reminds me of
another great biologist, C.H. Waddington, to whom Noble
pays handsome tribute. Writing with clarity and charm,
Noble attempts to break down silos of knowledge
inhabited by scientists who fail to come out and engage
with others. Self-serving priesthoods have never been
attractive. Broadening minds in an era of intense
specialisation is more important than ever. Noble
deserves to be successful in his desire to do just that
and I hope that he will be.'
Bateson, University of Cambridge
'In my view
Dance to The Tune of Life is a 'must read'. In it
Denis Noble lucidly deconstructs how and why
reductionism came to prominence in biology and led to
the current state of molecular Humpty-Dumptyism. His
central idea that there is no privileged level of
causation is the first conceptual step to putting Humpty
Dumpty back together again.'
Joyner, Mayo Clinic, Minnesota
'Denis Noble is
renowned for his mission to reintegrate the
physiological sciences with mainstream biology,
including evolutionary theory. His new book combines
clear exposition of basic principles with many valuable
examples. He gives the reader, general or expert, a
completely new view of life.'
Yung E Earm,
Seoul National University, South Korea
'Dance to the
Tune of Life is one of the most fascinating and
impressive books I have ever read. Denis Noble, a
world-renowned physiologist and systems biologist, has
revolutionized our traditional notion of the nature of
life. The title Dance to the Tune of Life mirrors the
essence of the argument of the book. The life emerges
from numerous biological processes at different scales
and levels. Such actors and actresses, stage properties,
and stage are not separately present they act together
in harmony, dancing to a tune with a music performed by
an orchestra, an organism. By describing his research
experiences and achievements on the cardiac rhythm
evolutionary biology, medicine, and philosophy, Denis
has not only provided us with very modern knowledge of
the biological reactions and their network but also
described to us the nature of life. I believe that this
book impacts everyone involved in biomedicine.'
Yoshihisa Kurachi, Osaka University, Japan
the 'Selfish Gene' fiction, Noble in this marvelous book
moves both science and philosophy from an antiquated
'either/or' static model to an 'and' model. 'Dance"
shows elegantly and brilliantly that from the miracle of
the ancient symbiosis of mitochondrial bacterial
remnants in human cells, through the rock-solid
interrelationship between genes and the feedback from
the environment in all senses - from the core phenomenon
of functional epigenetics, to the universe itself and
our place in it - that we are, at heart, inter-beings,
Samuel Shem, New York
'Denis Noble is a
pioneer in understanding human physiology through
quantitative studies linking behaviour across multiple
scales of biological organization - from proteins to
cells, tissues, organs and organ systems. These studies
have led him to characterize biological function in
terms of a Principle of Biological Relativity: there is
no privileged level of causation in biology, because
living organisms are multilevel open stochastic systems
in which the behaviour at any level depends on higher
and lower levels, and so cannot be fully understood in
isolation. This engaging book defends this view in
depth, and thereby also provides strong support for an
extended synthesis of evolutionary theory that goes
beyond the Modern Synthesis of Neo-Darwinism. It is
highly recommended as a thoughtful study of the kind of
complexity real living organisms display.'
George Ellis FRS, University of Cape Town, South Africa