Canadian Journal of Philosophy 31 (2):201-220 (2001)
|Abstract||Does natural selection explain why individual organisms have the traits that they do? According to "the Negative View," natural selection does not explain why any individual organism has the traits that it does. According to "the Positive View," natural selection at least sometimes does explain why an individual organism has the traits that it does. In this paper, I argue that recent arguments for the Positive View fail in virtue of running afoul of the doctrine of origin essentialism and I demonstrate that other recent defenses of the Negative View depend upon my own for their plausibility.|
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