Mind and Language 23 (1):1–24 (2008)
|Abstract||Darwinism consists of two parts: a phylogenesis of biological species (ours included) and the claim that the primary mechanism of the evolution of phenotypes is natural selection. I assume that Darwin’s account of phylogeny is essentially correct; attention is directed to the theory of natural selection. I claim that Darwin’s account of evolution by natural selection cannot be sustained. The basic problem is that, according to the consensus view, evolution consists in changes of the distribution of phenotypic traits in populations of organisms. An evolutionary theory must therefore explicate not just the notion of organisms being selected, but also the notion of organisms being selected for their phenotypic traits. I argue that that there is no way for a theory of natural selection to do so, and that Darwin’s assumption to the contrary was likely the consequence of placing too much weight on the analogy between natural selection and artificial selection. The paper ends with the suggestion that selectionist explanations, insofar as they are convincing, are best construed as post hoc historical narratives: natural history rather than biology.|
|Keywords||No keywords specified (fix it)|
|Categories||categorize this paper)|
|Through your library||Configure|
Similar books and articles
Philippe Huneman (2012). Natural Selection: A Case for the Counterfactual Approach. [REVIEW] Erkenntnis 76 (2):171-194.
Charles Darwin (2005). On Natural Selection. Penguin Books.
Peter Munz (1993). Philosophical Darwinism: On the Origin of Knowledge by Means of Natural Selection. Routledge.
Denis M. Walsh (2003). Fit and Diversity: Explaining Adaptive Evolution. Philosophy of Science 70 (2):280-301.
Edward S. Reed (1978). Darwin's Evolutionary Philosophy: The Laws of Change. Acta Biotheoretica 27 (3-4).
Joeri Witteveen (2009). Darwinism About Darwinism. [REVIEW] Biological Theory 4 (2):207-213.
Timothy Shanahan (2004). The Evolution of Darwinism: Selection, Adaptation, and Progress in Evolutionary Biology. Cambridge University Press.
Added to index2009-01-28
Total downloads228 ( #1,220 of 722,813 )
Recent downloads (6 months)3 ( #25,982 of 722,813 )
How can I increase my downloads?