Biography and Scientific Endeavour


This article looks at how environmental life histories have been used for particular purposes. It considers whether the use of life history by science is part of the effort to find common languages between and across sciences. Discussing Charles Elton, Aldo Leopold, C. S. Holling and Rachel Carson, the article argues that important figures can provide a “prehistory” and authority to the sciences, just as Paul Kruger’s name lent authority to the idea of the national park in South Africa.