Constraints and spandrels in Gould's structure of evolutionary theory

Biology and Philosophy 19 (1):29-43 (2004)
Gould's Structure ofEvolutionary Theory argues that Darwinism hasundergone significant revision. Although Gouldsucceeds in showing that hierarchicalapproaches have expanded Darwinism, hiscritique of adaptationism is less successful. Gould claims that the ubiquity of developmentalconstraints and spandrels has forced biologiststo soften their commitment to adaptationism. Iargue that Gould overstates his conclusion; hisprincipal claims are compatible with at leastsome versions of adaptationism. Despite thisweakness, Gould's discussion of adaptationism –particularly his discussions of the exaptivepool and cross-level spandrels – shouldprovoke new work in evolutionary theory and thephilosophy of biology.
Keywords adaptationism  constraint  evolvability  Gould
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DOI 10.1023/B:BIPH.0000013261.77799.94
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Mark E. Borrello (2004). Radicals and Revolution. Studies in History and Philosophy of Science Part C 35 (1):209-216.

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