Painting a nuanced picture of intellectual, economic, ideological, and political life in the Soviet Union of the 1930s and 1940s, the book demonstrates how the rhetorics of Lysenkoism
and Mendelism interacted with Stalinist culture in the fight for dominating Soviet science.
, obviously, resulted in deep personal tragedy for the scientists directly affected, but it spelled even larger tragedy for Russian science in general and greatly exacerbated the famines caused by Stalin's agricultural collectivization policies.
Should that situation appear a fanciful contrivance, I point out that Caplan himself presents Lysenkoism
as an irrational belief, even though under Stalin it clearly was in every Soviet geneticist's self-interest, narrowly conceived, to endorse Lysenko's theory.
There's an element of Lysenkoism
[Lysenko was Stalin's favorite biologist] all tangled up with this pseudoscience and environmentalism.
The current literary-critical superstition that everything is a construct constitutes a sophisticated Lysenkoism
The victory of Lysenkoism
in the Soviet Union during the 1940s could best be explained in "externalist" terms: it was made possible by the calamitous crisis in agriculture caused by the forced collectivation of land and by the official effort to find quick scientific ways for improving agricultural production.
The "passing phase" theory should be dumped into the same ideological bin as Freud's latency theory and Lysenkoism