The role of fossils in phylogeny reconstruction: Why is it so difficult to integrate paleobiological and neontological evolutionary biology? [Book Review]
David Bourget (Western Ontario)
David Chalmers (ANU, NYU)
Rafael De Clercq
Jack Alan Reynolds
Learn more about PhilPapers
Biology and Philosophy 19 (5):687-720 (2004)
Why has it been so difficult to integrate paleontology and mainstream evolutionary biology? Two common answers are: (1) the two fields have fundamentally different aims, and (2) the tensions arise out of disciplinary squabbles for funding and prestige. This paper examines the role of fossil data in phylogeny reconstruction in order to assess these two explanations. I argue that while cladistics has provided a framework within which to integrate fossil character data, the stratigraphic (temporal) component of fossil data has been harder to integrate. A close examination of how fossil data have been used in phylogeny reconstruction suggests that neither explanation is adequate. While some of the tensions between the fields may be intellectual turf wars, the second explanation downplays the genuine difficulty of combining the distinctive data of the two fields. Furthermore, it is simply not the case that the two fields pursue completely distinct aims. Systematists do disagree about precisely how to represent phylogeny (e.g., minimalist cladograms or trees with varying levels of detail) but given that every tree presupposes a pattern of branching (a cladogram), these aims are not completely distinct. The central problem has been developing methods that allow scientists to incorporate the distinctive bodies of data generated by these two fields. Further case studies will be required to determine if this explanation holds for other areas of interaction between paleontology and neontology.
|Keywords||cladistics integration stratigraphy stratocladistics unification|
|Categories||categorize this paper)|
Setup an account with your affiliations in order to access resources via your University's proxy server
Configure custom proxy (use this if your affiliation does not provide a proxy)
|Through your library|
References found in this work BETA
No references found.
Citations of this work BETA
Ingo Brigandt (2010). Beyond Reduction and Pluralism: Toward an Epistemology of Explanatory Integration in Biology. [REVIEW] Erkenntnis 73 (3):295-311.
Alan C. Love & Gary L. Lugar (2013). Dimensions of Integration in Interdisciplinary Explanations of the Origin of Evolutionary Novelty. Studies in History and Philosophy of Science Part C: Studies in History and Philosophy of Biological and Biomedical Sciences 44 (4):537-550.
Maureen A. O'Malley (2013). When Integration Fails: Prokaryote Phylogeny and the Tree of Life. Studies in History and Philosophy of Science Part C: Studies in History and Philosophy of Biological and Biomedical Sciences 44 (4):551-562.
Similar books and articles
J. A. Clack (1993). Homologies in the Fossil Record: The Middle Ear as a Test Case. Acta Biotheoretica 41 (4).
Francisco Vergara-Silva (forthcoming). Pattern Cladistics and the 'Realism–Antirealism Debate' in the Philosophy of Biology. Acta Biotheoretica.
Joel D. Velasco & Elliott Sober (2010). Testing for Treeness: Lateral Gene Transfer, Phylogenetic Inference, and Model Selection. Biology and Philosophy 25 (4):675-687.
Stavros Ioannidis (2008). How Development Changes Evolution: Conceptual and Historical Issues in Evolutionary Developmental Biology. [REVIEW] Biology and Philosophy 23 (4):567-578.
Stephen M. Downes (1999). Can Scientific Development and Children's Cognitive Development Be the Same Process? Philosophy of Science 66 (4):565-578.
Todd A. Grantham (2004). Conceptualizing the (Dis)Unity of Science. Philosophy of Science 71 (2):133-155.
Derek D. Turner (2011). Paleontology: A Philosophical Introduction. Cambridge University Press.
Olivier Rieppel & Maureen Kearney (2007). The Poverty of Taxonomic Characters. Biology and Philosophy 22 (1):95-113.
Maureen A. O.’Malley, William Martin & John Dupré (2010). The Tree of Life: Introduction to an Evolutionary Debate. [REVIEW] Biology and Philosophy 25 (4):441-453.
Olivier Rieppel (2010). The Series, the Network, and the Tree: Changing Metaphors of Order in Nature. Biology and Philosophy 25 (4):475-496.
Added to index2009-01-28
Total downloads10 ( #149,286 of 1,102,475 )
Recent downloads (6 months)4 ( #85,420 of 1,102,475 )
How can I increase my downloads?