David Bourget (Western Ontario)
David Chalmers (ANU, NYU)
Rafael De Clercq
Jack Alan Reynolds
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Biology and Philosophy 22 (4):493-512 (2007)
The article addresses the question whether culture evolves in a Lamarckian manner. I highlight three central aspects of a Lamarckian concept of evolution: the inheritance of acquired characteristics, the transformational pattern of evolution, and the concept of directed changes. A clear exposition of these aspects shows that a system can be a Darwinian variational system instead of a Lamarckian transformational one, even if it is based on inheritance of acquired characteristics and/or on Lamarckian directed changes. On this basis, I apply the three aspects to culture. Taking for granted that culture is a variational system, based on selection processes, I discuss in detail the senses in which cultural inheritance can be said to be Lamarckian and in which sense problem solving, a major factor in cultural change, leads to directed variation.
|Keywords||Cultural evolution Inheritance of acquired characteristics Lamarckism Memes Problem solving Transformational evolution directed variation|
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Citations of this work BETA
Maria Kronfeldner (2010). Darwinian 'Blind' Hypothesis Formation Revisited. Synthese 175 (2):193--218.
Bernd Baldus (2015). Contingency, Novelty and Choice. Cultural Evolution as Internal Selection. Journal for the Theory of Social Behaviour 45 (2):214-237.
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