6. The origins and history of the arts in all cultures can be better understood using theseperspectives; and may in turn cast light on the meaning of the scientific data.7. Such knowledge may help us both in knowing our own nature, and also in the making,exegesis and experience of the arts.Biopoetics--or whatever we want to call it--being a new field, it is presently at the stage of collecting data, checking out what methods and schemas are useful, and establishing the scopeand depth of its inquiries. In this introduction I would like to sketch a sort of map of theterritory, giving a sense not only of the possible shape of the field as it matures but also itsgeneral neighborhood and related problem areas. It will thus perhaps cover a rather largerlandscape than the bit of it that can be usefully studied for the time being; but it might not hurt tobe oriented in the wider world of human inquiry. I will locate the essays in this collection withinthe overall schema, as a way to illustrate the rich material and new insights to be gleaned in thenew field, as a hint about where the best researchers are concentrating their energies at this stageof the game, and as an introduction to the essays themselves. Readers are welcome to quarrelwith my assignment of the articles to specific classifications, for most of them cover a good dealof ground, and the relations among the categories I will distinguish are at least as interesting asthe categories themselves. But it may be useful to tease out the threads of inquiry, howeverinterwoven they must be in practice.
ii. General theory of natural nomogenesis
Thus, first of all, we might locate our new field in the context of a large change that has quietlybeen going on in the sciences over the last few decades--a change in our attitude toward thelawfulness and order apparent in the universe. The major component of this change is the idea of