I'm reading Gillian Beer's Darwin's Plots: Evolutionary Narrative in Darwin, George Eliot and Nineteenth-Century Fiction. This book is essentially a work of literary criticism of Darwin's theory of evolution. It traces the Darwin's literary influences as well as Darwin's impact on literature. It also features a close reading of Darwin's work, and argues that ideas can't be separated from the language they are contained in. It's a really interesting work and it's worth reading if you're interested in Literature.
One thing that I didn't get from the introduction was to what extent Beer was doing something new by applying literary criticism to a scientific work. Was this something that has always been done, is Beer the first person to have done this, or is Beer part of an emerging tradition but not necessarily the first?