David Bourget (Western Ontario)
David Chalmers (ANU, NYU)
Rafael De Clercq
Jack Alan Reynolds
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Philosophy of Science 65 (2):209-252 (1998)
The question of the influence of genes on behavior raises difficult philosophical and social issues. In this paper I delineate what I call the Developmentalist Challenge (DC) to assertions of genetic influence on behavior, and then examine the DC through an indepth analysis of the behavioral genetics of the nematode, C. elegans, with some briefer references to work on Drosophila. I argue that eight "rules" relating genes and behavior through environmentally-influenced and tangled neural nets capture the results of developmental and behavioral studies on the nematode. Some elements of the DC are found to be sound and others are criticized. The essay concludes by examining the relations of this study to Kitcher's antireductionist arguments and Bechtel and Richardson's decomposition and localization heuristics. Some implications for human behavioral genetics are also briefly considered
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Citations of this work BETA
Karola Stotz, Paul E. Griffiths & Rob Knight (2004). How Biologists Conceptualize Genes: An Empirical Study. Studies in History and Philosophy of Science Part C 35 (4):647-673.
Paul E. Griffiths & Edouard Machery (2008). Innateness, Canalization, and 'Biologicizing the Mind'. Philosophical Psychology 21 (3):397 – 414.
Kenneth F. Schaffner (2006). Reduction: The Cheshire Cat Problem and a Return to Roots. Synthese 151 (3):377 - 402.
Ulrich E. Stegmann (2012). Varieties of Parity. Biology and Philosophy 27 (6):903-918.
Karola Stotz & Paul Griffiths (forthcoming). Dissecting Developmental Biology. Studies in History and Philosophy of Science Part C: Studies in History and Philosophy of Biological and Biomedical Sciences.
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