Search on: VITALISM 
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Descriptor English:   Vitalism 
Descriptor Spanish:   Vitalismo 
Descriptor Portuguese:   Vitalismo 
Synonyms English:   Vitalisms  
Tree Number:   HP1.007.338
K01.752.935
Definition English:   The metaphysical doctrine that the functions and processes of life are due to a vital principle distinct from physicochemical forces and that the laws of physics and chemistry alone cannot explain life functions and processes. Vitalism is opposed to mechanistic materialism. The belief was that matter was divided into two classes based on behavior with respect to heat: organic and inorganic. Inorganic material could be melted but could always be recovered by removing the heat source. Organic compounds changed form upon heating and could not be recovered by removing the heat source. The proposed explanation for the difference between organic and inorganic compounds was the Vitalism Theory, which stated that inorganic materials did not contain the "vital force" of life. 
Allowable Qualifiers English:  
HI history PX psychology
Record Number:   15200 
Unique Identifier:   D014799 

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