Biology and Philosophy 13 (2):245-253 (1998)
|Abstract||Several philosophers of science have advanced an instrumentalist thesis about the use of probabilities in evolutionary biology. I investigate the consequences of instrumentalism on evolutionary explanations. I take issue with Barbara Horan's (1994) argument that probabilities are unnecessary to explain evolutionary change given the underlying deterministic character of evolutionary processes. First, I question Horan's deterministic assumption. Then, I attempt to undermine her Laplacian argument by demonstrating that whether probabilities are necessary depends upon the sort of questions one is asking.|
|Keywords||evolutionary theory LaPlacian determinism parsimony probabilistic explanations statistics|
|Categories||categorize this paper)|
|Through your library||Configure|
Similar books and articles
Roger Sansom (2003). Constraining the Adaptationism Debate. Biology and Philosophy 18 (4):493-512.
Mary B. Williams (1986). The Logical Skeleton of Darwin's Historical Methodology. PSA: Proceedings of the Biennial Meeting of the Philosophy of Science Association 1986:514 - 521.
David N. Stamos (2001). Quantum Indeterminism and Evolutionary Biology. Philosophy of Science 68 (2):164-184.
Aidan Lyon (2010). Deterministic Probability: Neither Chance nor Credence. Synthese 182 (3):413-432.
Elliott Sober (2010). Evolutionary Theory and the Reality of Macro Probabilities. In Ellery Eells & James H. Fetzer (eds.), The Place of Probability in Science. Springer.
Marshall Abrams (2006). Infinite Populations and Counterfactual Frequencies in Evolutionary Theory. Studies in History and Philosophy of Science Part C 37 (2):256-268.
B. Loewer (2001). Determinism and Chance. Studies in History and Philosophy of Science Part B 32 (4):609-620.
Barbara L. Horan (1994). The Statistical Character of Evolutionary Theory. Philosophy of Science 61 (1):76-95.
Bence Nanay (2004). The Structure and Significance of Evolutionary Explanations in Philosophy. In H. Carel & D. Gamez (eds.), What Philosophy is. Ccontinuum.
Roberta L. Millstein (2003). Interpretations of Probability in Evolutionary Theory. Philosophy of Science 70 (5):1317-1328.
Added to index2009-01-28
Total downloads9 ( #122,297 of 722,698 )
Recent downloads (6 months)1 ( #60,006 of 722,698 )
How can I increase my downloads?