Happy 100, Jacques Monod

By Carl Zimmer | February 9, 2010 4:14 pm

The great French biologist Jacques Monod would have turned 100 today. I am personally fond of him for having said, “What is true for E. coli is true for the elephant,” but he did much more than coin lovely phrases about microbes. His work on how genes switch on and off earned him a Nobel in 1965, and he also gave deep thought to the philosophy of biology, seeing it as the interplay of chance and necessity. Here’s a blog post from Larry Moran with more, and here’s Monod’s 1971 book, Chance and Necessity: An Essay on the Natural Philosophy of Modern Biology

[Thanks to Jim Hu for pointing out this auspicious day!]

CATEGORIZED UNDER: Microcosm: The Book

Comments (1)

  1. Ed

    A great man, wonderfully caricatured by that great character of molecular biology himself – and colleague, lab partner, fellow Nobel winner – Francois Jacob in “The Statue Within”. That’s one of my favourite science [auto]biographies.

    [CZ: Agreed, enthusiastically.]


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The Loom

A blog about life, past and future. Written by DISCOVER contributing editor and columnist Carl Zimmer.

About Carl Zimmer

Carl Zimmer writes about science regularly for The New York Times and magazines such as DISCOVER, which also hosts his blog, The LoomHe is the author of 12 books, the most recent of which is Science Ink: Tattoos of the Science Obsessed.


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