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Gregor Mendel – The Scientist: Based on primary sources 1822-1884
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The major purpose is to present J. G. Mendel in a real and interesting way based on the most recent historical research and analysis of authentic sources. The book aims to show Mendels scientific thinking and inner feelings in the integrity of his environment and to communicate his message as a multifaceted personality and modern experimental scientist. The book will draw from the only existing Mendels textual autobiography of 1850, his letters, the iconographic pictures in the monastic ceiling paintings of 1875 that were made according to his proposal and show areas of his activity. They form the basis of this novel concept. There are additional building blocks made of authenticity of Mendels scientific society, his collegium and life in Brno where he spent almost 40 years of life. The book resembles a self-portrait. This is the major difference from the previous ones. Thus the book will also mention many myths appearing in literature coming from a novelist style of biographers. The structure of the book follows thematic groups of his autobiographies (both textual and pictorial) to show what Mendel considered significant in his life. His self portrait materialized in his autobiographies and his personal emblems reveal the essence of the enigmatic discoverer.
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Author BiographyAnna Matalova is Emeritus Head of the Mendelianum of the Moravian Museum that continues the historical research started by the Franz (now Moravian) Museum founded by the learned Agricultural Society in 1817. She was the first (and the last) assistant to Jaroslav Krizenecky after his release from the communist prison. Since then, she has devoted her life to research into Mendelian history and its presentation. She was editor of the academic journal Folia Mendeliana. After the Velvet Revolution, and until her retirement, she was the Head of the Mendelianum in Brno and Chairperson of the Czech Committee for the History of Science and Technology in Prague. Shortly after the fall of the so-called Iron Curtain, Anna began organizing the international Mendel Forum conferences to facilitate intensive and open communication among researchers and experts from the West and the East. Thanks to her endeavour, the Mendelianum has now been located in the authentic rooms of Mendels Agricultural Society in the historical heart of Brno. She also has highlighted other places connected with Mendels life and authored Mendels Path in Brno. She was instrumental in the establishment of the Fund for Mendels native house (farmstead of Mendels parents) in Hyncice (now part of Vrazne), allowing for its reconstruction as a place for cultural meetings. In her exhibitions and scientific publications, she has presented Mendels accomplishments in context with actual cultural, social and scientific topics. Her husband, son and daughter consider Mendel as a member of the family. Eva Matalova is a leading Research Scientist at the Institute of Animal Physiology and Genetics of the Czech Academy of Sciences and a Professor at the University of Veterinary Sciences in Brno. She has "inherited" her interest in Mendel from her mother, Anna. Eva has been active in the Mendelianum since her PhD studies, organizing annual Mendel Forum conferences in the 21st century and other activities focused on students and youth (Junior Mendel Forums, Wednesdays with Mendel, DNA afternoons, Science in Action, etc.). Eva proposed the idea of the International Mendel Day on March 8, and established an International Mendel Network consisting of expert 3 scientists and historians. She was the initiator, facilitator and guarantor of the project Centrum Mendelianum, based on Annas concept of Mendels accomplishments as a naturalist. Eva feels honoured to assist with publication of this book on the occasion of the bicentennial of Mendel's birth. With love to our genetic offspring, Tommy and Luky.
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