David Bourget (Western Ontario)
David Chalmers (ANU, NYU)
Rafael De Clercq
Jack Alan Reynolds
Learn more about PhilPapers
Philosophy of Science 73 (1):1-25 (2006)
Many philosophers believe that 1) most uses of functional language in biology make implicit reference to natural selection and 2) the fundamental way in which biologists identify parts and processes in organisms is by their selected function(s). Both these claims are mistaken. Much functional language in biology refers to actual causal roles, and if this were not so, biology would be impossible. The extensive biological literature on the ‘character concept’ focuses on another principle of biological identity, namely homology. I outline some of this work and use it to refute philosophical arguments for the importance and ubiquity of classification by adaptive function.
|Keywords||C1 370600 History and Philosophy of Science and Medicine 780199 Other 279999 Biological Sciences not elsewhere classified|
|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
Justin Garson (2013). The Functional Sense of Mechanism. Philosophy of Science 80 (3):317-333.
Claudia Lorena García (2010). Functional Homology and Functional Variation in Evolutionary Cognitive Science. Biological Theory 5 (2):124-135.
Similar books and articles
Ron Amundson & George V. Lauder (1994). Function Without Purpose. Biology and Philosophy 9 (4):443-469.
Alan C. Love (2007). Functional Homology and Homology of Function: Biological Concepts and Philosophical Consequences. Biology and Philosophy 22 (5):691-708.
Paul E. Griffiths (2007). The Phenomena of Homology. Biology and Philosophy 22 (5):643-658.
Mohan Matthen (2007). Defining Vision: What Homology Thinking Contributes. Biology and Philosophy 22 (5):675-689.
Arno G. Wouters (2003). Four Notions of Biological Function. Studies in History and Philosophy of Biological and Biomedical Sciences 34 (4):633-668.
Marc Ereshefsky (2012). Homology Thinking. Biology and Philosophy 27 (3):381-400.
Heather Jamniczky (2005). Biological Pluralism and Homology. Philosophy of Science 72 (5):687-698.
Ingo Brigandt (2003). Homology in Comparative, Molecular, and Evolutionary Developmental Biology: The Radiation of a Concept. Journal of Experimental Zoology (Molecular and Developmental Evolution) 299:9-17.
Arno Wouters (2003). Four Notions of Biological Function. Studies in History and Philosophy of Science Part C 34 (4):633-668.
Paul E. Griffiths (2006). Function, Homology, and Character Individuation. Philosophy of Science 73 (1):1-25.
Added to index2009-01-28
Total downloads20 ( #88,873 of 1,099,911 )
Recent downloads (6 months)3 ( #127,260 of 1,099,911 )
How can I increase my downloads?