Juan Manuel Garrido

in On Time, Being, and Hunger

Published by Fordham University Press

Published in print May 2012 | ISBN: 9780823239351
Published online September 2012 | e-ISBN: 9780823239399 | DOI:

Series: Forms of Living (FUP)


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This chapter characterizes further the temporal-irreversible structure implied in teleological explanation. It focuses on the history of nineteenth-century thermodynamics and highlights the importance of the second law for the conceptualization of living organization. Any phenomenon of self-organization apparently violates the second law, since the complexity of the system is supposed to increased and the free energy is at least maintained. With the the theoretical frame provided by the second law and its cosmological generalizations, a neo-vitalistic explanation of the phenomenon of life emerged (for instance with Bergson).

Keywords: Thermodynamics; second law; time; energy; organization; vitalism

Chapter.  1887 words. 

Subjects: Philosophy of Science

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