Search results for 'Evolution' (try it on Scholar)

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  1. Henri Bergson (2007). Creative Evolution. Palgrave Macmillan.
    Henri Bergson (1859-1941) is one of the truly great philosophers of the modernist period, and there is currently a major renaissance of interest in his unduly neglected texts and ideas amongst philosophers, literary theorists, and social theorists. Creative Evolution (1907) is the text that made Bergson world-famous in his own lifetime; in it Bergson responds to the challenge presented to our habits of thought by modern evolutionary theory, and attempts to show that the theory of knowledge must have its (...)
     
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  2.  95
    Thomas Suddendorf & Michael C. Corballis (2007). The Evolution of Foresight: What is Mental Time Travel, and is It Unique to Humans? Behavioral and Brain Sciences 30 (3):299-313.
    In a dynamic world, mechanisms allowing prediction of future situations can provide a selective advantage. We suggest that memory systems differ in the degree of flexibility they offer for anticipatory behavior and put forward a corresponding taxonomy of prospection. The adaptive advantage of any memory system can only lie in what it contributes for future survival. The most flexible is episodic memory, which we suggest is part of a more general faculty of mental time travel that allows us not (...)
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  3. Massimo Pigliucci (2005). Evolution of Phenotypic Plasticity: Where Are We Going Now? Trends in Ecology and Evolution 20 (9):481-486.
    The study of phenotypic plasticity has progressed significantly over the past few decades. We have moved from variation for plasticity being considered as a nuisance in evolutionary studies to it being the primary target of investigations that use an array of methods, including quantitative and molecular genetics, as well as of several approaches that model the evolution of plastic responses. Here, I consider some of the major aspects of research on phenotypic plasticity, assessing where progress has been made and (...)
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  4.  45
    Nicholas Maxwell (2001). Evolution of Sentience, Consciousness and Language Viewed From a Darwinian and Purposive Perspective. In From The Human World in the Physical Universe: Consciousness, Free Will and Evolution, ch. 7. Rowman and Littlefield 162-201.
    In this article I give a Darwinian account of how sentience, consciousness and language may have evolved. It is argued that sentience and consciousness emerge as brains control purposive actions in new ways. A key feature of this account is that Darwinian theory is interpreted so as to do justice to the purposive character of living things. According to this interpretation, as evolution proceeds, purposive actions play an increasingly important role in the mechanisms of evolution until, with (...) by cultural means, Darwinian evolution takes on a Lamarckian character. According to this view, as evolution proceeds, the mechanisms of Darwinian evolution themselves evolve. (shrink)
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  5. Max Velmans (2007). The Co-Evolution of Matter and Consciousness. Velmans, Prof Max (2007) the Co-Evolution of Matter and Consciousness. [Journal (Paginated)] 44 (2):273-282.
    Theories about the evolution of consciousness relate in an intimate way to theories about the distribution of consciousness, which range from the view that only human beings are conscious to the view that all matter is in some sense conscious. Broadly speaking, such theories can be classified into discontinuity theories and continuity theories. Discontinuity theories propose that consciousness emerged only when material forms reached a given stage of evolution, but propose different criteria for the stage at which this (...)
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  6. Pouwel Slurink (1993). Ecological Dominance and the Final Sprint in Hominid Evolution. Human Evolution.
    In contrast to many other models of human evolution the "balance of power" theory of Alexander has a clear answer to the question why a runaway selection process for unique social and moral capacities occurred in our ancestry only and not in other species: "ecological dominance" is hypothesized to have diminished the effects of "extrinsic" forces of natural selection such that within-species, intergroup competition increased (Alexander, 1989). Alexander seems to be wrong, however, in his claim that already the common (...)
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  7.  59
    Samir Okasha (2006/2008). Evolution and the Levels of Selection. Oxford University Press.
    Does natural selection act primarily on individual organisms, on groups, on genes, or on whole species? The question of levels of selection - on which biologists and philosophers have long disagreed - is central to evolutionary theory and to the philosophy of biology. Samir Okasha's comprehensive analysis gives a clear account of the philosophical issues at stake in the current debate.
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  8.  4
    Gary Hatfield (2013). Introduction: The Evolution of Mind, Brain, and Culture. In Gary Hatfield & Holly Pittman (eds.), Evolution of Mind, Brain, and Culture. University of Pennsylvania Press 1-44.
    This introductory chapter surveys some basic findings on primate evolution and the evolution of mind; examines socially transmitted traditions in relation to the concept of culture; recounts the sources of evidence regarding the evolution of mind and culture; charts the history of evolutionary approaches to mind and behavior since Darwin; reviews several prominent theoretical syntheses concerning the evolution of the human mind and behavior; and, along the way, introduces the specific questions examined in the individual chapters.
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  9.  16
    Merlin Donald (1993). Précis of Origins of the Modern Mind: Three Stages in the Evolution of Culture and Cognition. Behavioral and Brain Sciences 16 (4):737-748.
    This bold and brilliant book asks the ultimate question of the life sciences: How did the human mind acquire its incomparable power? In seeking the answer, Merlin Donald traces the evolution of human culture and cognition from primitive apes to the era of artificial intelligence, and presents an original theory of how the human mind evolved from its presymbolic form. In the emergence of modern human culture, Donald proposes, there were three radical transitions. During the first, our bipedal but (...)
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  10.  2
    Stuart A. Kauffman (1993). The Origins of Order Self-Organization and Selection in Evolution. Oxford University Press.
  11.  69
    Kevin N. Laland, John Odling-Smee & Marcus W. Feldman (2000). Niche Construction, Biological Evolution, and Cultural Change. Behavioral and Brain Sciences 23 (1):131-146.
    We propose a conceptual model that maps the causal pathways relating biological evolution to cultural change. It builds on conventional evolutionary theory by placing emphasis on the capacity of organisms to modify sources of natural selection in their environment (niche construction) and by broadening the evolutionary dynamic to incorporate ontogenetic and cultural processes. In this model, phenotypes have a much more active role in evolution than generally conceived. This sheds light on hominid evolution, on the evolution (...)
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  12.  20
    Stephen Davies (2012). The Artful Species: Aesthetics, Art, and Evolution. OUP Oxford.
    Stephen Davies presents a fascinating exploration of the idea that art, and our aesthetic sensibilities more generally, should be understood as an element in human evolution. He asks: Do animals have aesthetics? Do our aesthetic preferences have prehistoric roots? Is art universal? What is the biological role of aesthetic and artistic behaviour?
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  13. Jason Scott Robert (2004). Embryology, Epigenesis, and Evolution Taking Development Seriously. Monograph Collection (Matt - Pseudo).
    Historically, philosophers of biology have tended to sidestep the problem of development by focusing primarily on evolutionary biology and, more recently, on molecular biology and genetics. Quite often too, development has been misunderstood as simply, or even primarily, a matter of gene activation and regulation. Nowadays a growing number of philosophers of science are focusing their analyses on the complexities of development, and in Embryology, Epigenesis and Evolution Jason Scott Robert explores the nature of development against current trends in (...)
     
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  14.  54
    Alex Mesoudi, Andrew Whiten & Kevin N. Laland (2006). Towards a Unified Science of Cultural Evolution. Behavioral and Brain Sciences 29 (4):329-347.
    We suggest that human culture exhibits key Darwinian evolutionary properties, and argue that the structure of a science of cultural evolution should share fundamental features with the structure of the science of biological evolution. This latter claim is tested by outlining the methods and approaches employed by the principal subdisciplines of evolutionary biology and assessing whether there is an existing or potential corresponding approach to the study of cultural evolution. Existing approaches within anthropology and archaeology demonstrate a (...)
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  15. Jürgen Habermas (1991). Communication and the Evolution of Society. Monograph Collection (Matt - Pseudo).
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  16.  10
    Richard Dawkins (2004). The Ancestor's Tale: A Pilgrimage to the Dawn of Evolution. Houghton Mifflin.
    The renowned biologist and thinker Richard Dawkins presents his most expansive work yet: a comprehensive look at evolution, ranging from the latest developments in the field to his own provocative views. Loosely based on the form of Chaucer's Canterbury Tales, Dawkins's Tale takes us modern humans back through four billion years of life on our planet. As the pilgrimage progresses, we join with other organisms at the forty "rendezvous points" where we find a common ancestor. The band of pilgrims (...)
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  17.  33
    David L. Hull (2001). Science and Selection: Essays on Biological Evolution and the Philosophy of Science. Cambridge University Press.
    One way to understand science is as a selection process. David Hull, one of the dominant figures in contemporary philosophy of science, sets out in this volume a general analysis of this selection process that applies equally to biological evolution, the reaction of the immune system to antigens, operant learning, and social and conceptual change in science. Hull aims to distinguish between those characteristics that are contingent features of selection and those that are essential. Science and Selection brings together (...)
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  18. R. W. Byrne & Andrew Whiten (1988). Machiavellian Intelligence: Social Expertise and the Evolution of Intellect in Monkeys, Apes, and Humans. Oxford University Press.
    This book presents an alternative to conventional ideas about the evolution of the human intellect.
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  19.  87
    Hallvard Lillehammer (forthcoming). An Assumption of Extreme Significance: Moore, Ross and Spencer on Ethics and Evolution. In Uri D. Leibowitz & Neil Sinclair (eds.), Explanation in Ethics and Mathematics. Oxford University Press
    In recent years there has been a growing interest among mainstream Anglophone moral philosophers in the empirical study of human morality, including its evolution and historical development. This chapter compares these developments with an earlier point of contact between moral philosophy and the moral sciences in the early decades of the Twentieth century, as manifested in some of the less frequently discussed arguments of G. E. Moore and W. D. Ross. It is argued that a critical appreciation of Moore (...)
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  20.  82
    Robert Boyd, Peter J. Richerson & Joseph Henrich (2008). Five Misunderstandings About Cultural Evolution. Human Nature 19 (2):119-137.
    Recent debates about memetics have revealed some widespread misunderstandings about Darwinian approaches to cultural evolution. Drawing from these debates, this paper disputes five common claims: (1) mental representations are rarely discrete, and therefore models that assume discrete, gene-like particles (i.e., replicators) are useless; (2) replicators are necessary for cumulative, adaptive evolution; (3) content-dependent psychological biases are the only important processes that affect the spread of cultural representations; (4) the “cultural fitness” of a mental representation can be inferred from (...)
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  21.  98
    Elliott Sober (1992). The Evolution of Altruism: Correlation, Cost, and Benefit. [REVIEW] Biology and Philosophy 7 (2):177-187.
    A simple and general criterion is derived for the evolution of altruism when individuals interact in pairs. It is argued that the treatment of this problem in kin selection theory and in game theory are special cases of this general criterion.
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  22.  78
    Maria Brincker (2015). Evolution Beyond Determinism - on Dennett's Compatibilism and the Too Timeless Free Will Debate. Journal of Cognition and Neuroethics 3 (1):39-74.
    Most of the free will debate operates under the assumption that classic determinism and indeterminism are the only metaphysical options available. Through an analysis of Dennett’s view of free will as gradually evolving this article attempts to point to emergentist, interactivist and temporal metaphysical options, which have been left largely unexplored by contemporary theorists. Whereas, Dennett himself holds that “the kind of free will worth wanting” is compatible with classic determinism, I propose that his models of determinism fit poorly with (...)
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  23. Peter B. Todd (2013). Teilhard and Other Modern Thinkers on Evolution, Mind, and Matter. Teilhard Studies (66):1-22.
    In his The Phenomenon of Man, Pierre Teilhard de Chardin develops concepts of consciousness, the noosphere, and psychosocial evolution. This paper explores Teilhard’s evolutionary concepts as resonant with thinking in psychology and physics. It explores contributions from archetypal depth psychology, quantum physics, and neuroscience to elucidate relationships between mind and matter. Teilhard’s work can be seen as advancing this psychological lineage or psychogenesis. That is, the evolutionary emergence of matter in increasing complexity from sub-atomic particles to the human brain (...)
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  24.  72
    Carl Schlichting & Massimo Pigliucci (1998). Phenotypic Evolution: A Reaction Norm Perspective. Sinauer.
    Phenotypic Evolution explicitly recognizes organisms as complex genetic-epigenetic systems developing in response to changing internal and external environments. As a key to a better understanding of how phenotypes evolve, the authors have developed a framework that centers on the concept of the Developmental Reaction Norm. This encompasses their views: (1) that organisms are better considered as integrated units than as disconnected parts (allometry and phenotypic integration); (2) that an understanding of ontogeny is vital for evaluating evolution of adult (...)
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  25.  62
    Dietrich Stout (2010). The Evolution of Cognitive Control. Topics in Cognitive Science 2 (4):614-630.
    One of the key challenges confronting cognitive science is to discover natural categories of cognitive function. Of special interest is the unity or diversity of cognitive control mechanisms. Evolutionary history is an underutilized resource that, together with neuropsychological and neuroscientific evidence, can help to provide a biological ground for the fractionation of cognitive control. Comparative evidence indicates that primate brain evolution has produced dissociable mechanisms for external action control and internal self-regulation, but that most real-world behaviors rely on a (...)
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  26.  43
    Henri Bergson (1944/2007). Creative Evolution. New York, the Modern Library.
    Henri Bergson (1859-1941) is one of the truly great philosophers of the modernist period, and there is currently a major renaissance of interest in his unduly neglected texts and ideas amongst philosophers, literary theorists, and social theorists. Creative Evolution (1907) is the text that made Bergson world-famous in his own lifetime; in it Bergson responds to the challenge presented to our habits of thought by modern evolutionary theory, and attempts to show that the theory of knowledge must have its (...)
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  27.  18
    Daniel C. Dennett & Jon Hodge (1997). Darwin's Dangerous Idea: Evolution and the Meanings of Life. British Journal for the Philosophy of Science 48 (3):435-438.
  28.  83
    Kim Sterelny (2006). The Evolution and Evolvability of Culture. Mind and Language 21 (2):137-165.
    Joseph Henrich and Richard McElreath begin their survey of theories of cultural evolution with a striking historical example. They contrast the fate of the Bourke and Wills expedition — an attempt to explore some of the arid areas of inland Australia — with the routine survival of the local aboriginals in exactly the same area. That expedition ended in failure and death, despite the fact that it was well equipped, and despite the fact that those on the expedition were (...)
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  29.  2
    David Sloan Wilson (2007). Evolution for Everyone: How Darwin's Theory Can Change the Way We Think About Our Lives. Delacorte Press.
    What is the biological reason for gossip? For laughter? For the creation of art? Why do dogs have curly tails? What can microbes tell us about morality? These and many other questions are tackled by renowned evolutionist David Sloan Wilson in this witty and groundbreaking new book. With stories that entertain as much as they inform, Wilson outlines the basic principles of evolution and shows how, properly understood, they can illuminate the length and breadth of creation, from the origin (...)
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  30.  29
    Hallvard Lillehammer (forthcoming). Ethics, Evolution and the a Priori: Ross on Spencer and the French Sociologists. In Robert Richards Michael Ruse (ed.), The Cambridge Handbook of Evolutionary Ethics.
    In this chapter I critically discuss the dismissal of the philosophical significance of facts about human evolution and historical development in the work of W. D Ross. I address Ross’s views about the philosophical significance of the emerging human sciences of his time in two of his main works, namely The Right and the Good and The Foundations of Ethics. I argue that the debate between Ross and his chosen interlocutors (Herbert Spencer, Emile Durkheim and Lucien Levy-Bruhl) shows striking (...)
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  31.  47
    John Powell (2013). Stephen Davies, The Artful Species: Aesthetics, Art, and Evolution (2013). Literature & Aesthetics 23 (2):1-1.
    This review article critiques Stephen Davies' The Artful Species: Aesthetics, Art, and Evolution.
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  32.  39
    Jeffrey A. Barrett (2009). The Evolution of Coding in Signaling Games. Theory and Decision 67 (2):223-237.
    Signaling games with reinforcement learning have been used to model the evolution of term languages (Lewis 1969, Convention. Cambridge, MA: Harvard University Press; Skyrms 2006, “Signals” Presidential Address. Philosophy of Science Association for PSA). In this article, syntactic games, extensions of David Lewis’s original sender–receiver game, are used to illustrate how a language that exploits available syntactic structure might evolve to code for states of the world. The evolution of a language occurs in the context of available vocabulary (...)
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  33. James R. Hofmann & Bruce H. Weber (2003). The Fact of Evolution: Implications for Science Education. Science and Education 12 (8):729-760.
    Creationists who object to evolution in the science curriculum of public schools often cite Jonathan Well’s book Icons of Evolution in their support (Wells 2000). In the third chapter of his book Wells claims that neither paleontological nor molecular evidence supports the thesis that the history of life is an evolutionary process of descent from preexisting ancestors. We argue that Wells inappropriately relies upon ambiguities inherent in the term ‘Darwinian’ and the phrase ‘Darwin’s theory’. Furthermore, he does not (...)
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  34.  37
    Robert Northcott (2010). Walsh on Causes and Evolution. Philosophy of Science 77 (3):457-467.
    Denis Walsh has written a striking new defense in this journal of the statisticalist (i.e., noncausalist) position regarding the forces of evolution. I defend the causalist view against his new objections. I argue that the heart of the issue lies in the nature of nonadditive causation. Detailed consideration of that turns out to defuse Walsh’s ‘description‐dependence’ critique of causalism. Nevertheless, the critique does suggest a basis for reconciliation between the two competing views. *Received December 2009; revised December 2009. †To (...)
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  35.  30
    Nick Chater & Morten H. Christiansen (2010). Language Acquisition Meets Language Evolution. Cognitive Science 34 (7):1131-1157.
    Recent research suggests that language evolution is a process of cultural change, in which linguistic structures are shaped through repeated cycles of learning and use by domain-general mechanisms. This paper draws out the implications of this viewpoint for understanding the problem of language acquisition, which is cast in a new, and much more tractable, form. In essence, the child faces a problem of induction, where the objective is to coordinate with others (C-induction), rather than to model the structure of (...)
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  36. Barbara L. Finlay, Richard B. Darlington & Nicholas Nicastro (2001). Developmental Structure in Brain Evolution. Behavioral and Brain Sciences 24 (2):263-278.
    How does evolution grow bigger brains? It has been widely assumed that growth of individual structures and functional systems in response to niche-specific cognitive challenges is the most plausible mechanism for brain expansion in mammals. Comparison of multiple regressions on allometric data for 131 mammalian species, however, suggests that for 9 of 11 brain structures taxonomic and body size factors are less important than covariance of these major structures with each other. Which structure grows biggest is largely predicted by (...)
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  37.  72
    Alfred Gierer (2004). Human Brain Evolution, Theories of Innovation, and Lessons From the History of Technology. J. Biosci 29 (3):235-244.
    Biological evolution and technological innovation, while differing in many respects, also share common features. In particular, implementation of a new technology in the market is analogous to the spreading of a new genetic trait in a population. Technological innovation may occur either through the accumulation of quantitative changes, as in the development of the ocean clipper, or it may be initiated by a new combination of features or subsystems, as in the case of steamships. Other examples of the latter (...)
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  38.  12
    Frederick J. Newmeyer (2016). Form and Function in the Evolution of Grammar. Cognitive Science 40 (4):n/a-n/a.
    This article focuses on claims about the origin and evolution of language from the point of view of the formalist–functionalist debate in linguistics. In linguistics, an account of a grammatical phenomenon is considered “formal” if it accords center stage to the structural properties of that phenomenon, and “functional” if it appeals to the language user's communicative needs or to domain-general human capacities. The gulf between formalism and functionalism has been bridged in language evolution research, in that some leading (...)
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  39. P. Slurink, Culture and the Evolution of the Human Mating System.
    Contrary to chimpanzees and bonobos, humans display long-term exclusive relationships between males and females. Probably all human cultures have some kind of marriage system, apparently designed to protect these exclusive relationships and the resulting offspring in a potentially sexual competitive environment. Different hypotheses about the origin of human pair-bonds are compared and it is shown how they may refer to different phases of human evolution.
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  40. Matteo Mameli (2002). Mindreading, Mindshaping, and Evolution. Biology and Philosophy 16 (5):595-626.
    I present and apply some powerful tools for studying human evolution and the impact of cultural resources on it. The tools in question are a theory of niche construction and a theory about the evolutionary significance of extragenetic (and, in particular, of psychological and social) inheritance. These tools are used to show how culturally transmitted resources can be recruited by development and become generatively entrenched. The case study is constituted by those culturally transmitted items that social psychologists call ‘expectancies’. (...)
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  41. W. Tecumseh Fitch (2005). The Evolution of Language: A Comparative Review. [REVIEW] Biology and Philosophy 20 (2-3):193-203.
    For many years the evolution of language has been seen as a disreputable topic, mired in fanciful “just so stories” about language origins. However, in the last decade a new synthesis of modern linguistics, cognitive neuroscience and neo-Darwinian evolutionary theory has begun to make important contributions to our understanding of the biology and evolution of language. I review some of this recent progress, focusing on the value of the comparative method, which uses data from animal species to draw (...)
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  42.  34
    Alex Mesoudi (2008). Foresight in Cultural Evolution. Biology and Philosophy 23 (2):243-255.
    Critics of Darwinian cultural evolution frequently assert that whereas biological evolution is blind and undirected, cultural change is directed or guided by people who possess foresight, thereby invalidating any Darwinian analysis of culture. Here I show this argument to be erroneous and unsupported in several respects. First, critics commonly conflate human foresight with supernatural clairvoyance, resulting in the premature rejection of Darwinian cultural evolution on false logical grounds. Second, the presence of foresight is perfectly consistent with Darwinian (...)
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  43.  8
    D. Kimbrough Oller, Ulrike Griebel & Anne S. Warlaumont (2016). Vocal Development as a Guide to Modeling the Evolution of Language. Topics in Cognitive Science 8 (2):382-392.
    Modeling of evolution and development of language has principally utilized mature units of spoken language, phonemes and words, as both targets and inputs. This approach cannot address the earliest phases of development because young infants are unable to produce such language features. We argue that units of early vocal development—protophones and their primitive illocutionary/perlocutionary forces—should be targeted in evolutionary modeling because they suggest likely units of hominin vocalization/communication shortly after the split from the chimpanzee/bonobo lineage, and because early development (...)
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  44. Helena Knyazeva & Sergei Kurdyumov (2001). Nonlinear Synthesis and Co-Evolution of Complex Systems. World Futures 57 (3):239-261.
    Today a change is imperative in approaching global problems: what is needed is not arm-twisting and power politics, but searching for ways of co-evolution in the complex social and geopolitical systems of the world. The modern theory of self-organization of complex systems provides us with an understanding of the possible forms of coexistence of heterogeneous social and geopolitical structures at different stages of development regarding the different paths of their sustainable co-evolutionary development. The theory argues that the evolutionary channel (...)
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  45.  6
    Bob McMurray (2016). Language at Three Timescales: The Role of Real‐Time Processes in Language Development and Evolution. Topics in Cognitive Science 8 (2):393-407.
    Evolutionary developmental systems theory stresses that selection pressures operate on entire developmental systems rather than just genes. This study extends this approach to language evolution, arguing that selection pressure may operate on two quasi-independent timescales. First, children clearly must acquire language successfully and evolution must equip them with the tools to do so. Second, while this is developing, they must also communicate with others in the moment using partially developed knowledge. These pressures may require different solutions, and their (...)
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  46.  17
    Joel B. Hagen (1999). Naturalists, Molecular Biologists, and the Challenges of Molecular Evolution. Journal of the History of Biology 32 (2):321 - 341.
    Biologists and historians often present natural history and molecular biology as distinct, perhaps conflicting, fields in biological research. Such accounts, although supported by abundant evidence, overlook important areas of overlap between these areas. Focusing upon examples drawn particularly from systematics and molecular evolution, I argue that naturalists and molecular biologists often share questions, methods, and forms of explanation. Acknowledging these interdisciplinary efforts provides a more balanced account of the development of biology during the post-World War II era.
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  47.  46
    Philippe Huneman (2012). Determinism, Predictability and Open-Ended Evolution: Lessons From Computational Emergence. Synthese 185 (2):195-214.
    Among many properties distinguishing emergence, such as novelty, irreducibility and unpredictability, computational accounts of emergence in terms of computational incompressibility aim first at making sense of such unpredictability. Those accounts prove to be more objective than usual accounts in terms of levels of mereology, which often face objections of being too epistemic. The present paper defends computational accounts against some objections, and develops what such notions bring to the usual idea of unpredictability. I distinguish the objective unpredictability, compatible with determinism (...)
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  48.  98
    Jim Hopkins (forthcoming). The Significance of Consilience: Psychoanalysis, Attachment, Neuroscience, and Evolution. In L. Brakel & V. Talvete (eds.), Psychoanalysis and Philosophy of Mind: Unconscious mentality in the 21st century. Karnac
    This paper considers clinical psychoanalysis together with developmental psychology (particularly attachment theory), evolution, and neuroscience in the context a Bayesian account of confirmation and disconfrimation. -/- In it I argue that these converging sources of support indicate that the combination of relatively low predictive power and broad explanatory scope that characterise the theories of both Freud and Darwin suggest that Freud's theory, like Darwin's, may strike deeply into natural phenomena. -/- The same argument, however, suggests that conclusive confirmation (...)
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  49.  4
    Mary Midgley (2002). Evolution as a Religion: Strange Hopes and Stranger Fears. Routledge.
    According to a profile in The Guardian , Mary Midgley is 'the foremost scourge of scientific pretensions in this country; someone whose wit is admired even by those who feel she sometimes oversteps the mark'. Considered one of Britain's finest philosophers, Midgley exposes the illogical logic of poor doctrines that shelter themselves behind the prestige of science. Always at home when taking on the high priests of evolutionary theory - Dawkins, Wilson and their acolytes - she has famously described (...) as 'the creation-myth of our age'. In Evolution as a Religion , she examines how science comes to be used as a substitute for religion and points out how badly that role distorts it. As ever, her argument is flawlessly insightful: a punchy, compelling, lively indictment of these misuses of science. Both the book and its author are true classics of our time. (shrink)
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  50.  35
    Peter Richerson (2008). Five Misunderstandings About Cultural Evolution. Human Nature 19 (2):119-137.
    Recent debates about memetics have revealed some widespread misunderstandings about Darwinian approaches to cultural evolution. Drawing from these debates, this paper disputes five common claims: (1) mental representations are rarely discrete, and therefore models that assume discrete, gene-like particles (i.e., replicators) are useless; (2) replicators are necessary for cumulative, adaptive evolution; (3) content-dependent psychological biases are the only important processes that affect the spread of cultural representations; (4) the “cultural fitness” of a mental representation can be inferred from (...)
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