Biological Pluralism and Homology

Philosophy of Science 72 (5):687-698 (2005)
Homology concepts are fundamental to the study of biological similarity. Monistic attempts to articulate an overarching homology concept, applicable to all areas of biology, have yet to succeed. Biology is fundamentally pluralistic, and multiple homology concepts, applicable at different levels of the biological hierarchy, allow a more thorough investigation of the nature of biological similarity. Articulating the definition and causes associated with any homology concept ensures that the pluralistic approach advocated here is neither relativistic nor defeatist, but generative of fruitful biological research.
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