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  1. Adaptiveness and Adaptation: A New Autonomy-Theoretic Analysis and Critique.W. D. Christensen, J. D. Collier & C. A. Hooker - forthcoming - Biology and Philosophy.
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  2. Adaptiveness and Adaptation: There's More Than Selection.W. D. Christensen, John Collier & C. A. Hooker - forthcoming - Biology and Philosophy. Submitted.
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  3. The Strategy of Endogenization in Evolutionary Biology.Samir Okasha - forthcoming - Synthese:1-23.
    Evolutionary biology is striking for its ability to explain a large and diverse range of empirical phenomena on the basis of a few general theoretical principles. This article offers a philosophical perspective on the way that evolutionary biology has come to achieve such impressive generality, by focusing on “the strategy of endogenization”. This strategy involves devising evolutionary explanations for biological features that were originally part of the background conditions, or scaffolding, against which such explanations take place. Where successful, the strategy (...)
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  4. Consciência e Evolução: Uma Análise do Naturalismo Biológico a partir do Debate Adaptacionista.Victor Barcellos, Sergio Farias de Souza Filho & Roberto Horácio Pereira - 2021 - Revista Reflexões 18 (10):183-200.
    The goal of this paper is to assess biological naturalism in light of the adaptationist debate. Searle is famous for explicity pursuing a biological foundation for his theory of consciousness. However, evolutionary biology receives little attention in his work, which results in crucial theoretical confusions over adaptationism. In this paper, we will propose two theses concerning Searle's approach to consciousness in the context of the adaptationist debate. First, Searle's attack on adaptationism only applies to its naive version, failing to touch (...)
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  5. A Theory of Evolution as a Process of Unfolding.Agustin Ostachuk - 2020 - Cosmos and History: The Journal of Natural and Social Philosophy 16 (1):347-379.
    In this work I propose a theory of evolution as a process of unfolding. This theory is based on four logically concatenated principles. The principle of evolutionary order establishes that the more complex cannot be generated from the simpler. The principle of origin establishes that there must be a maximum complexity that originates the others by logical deduction. Finally, the principle of unfolding and the principle of actualization guarantee the development of the evolutionary process from the simplest to the most (...)
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  6. The Unfolding of a New Vision of Life, Cosmos and Evolution.Agustin Ostachuk - 2020 - Ludus Vitalis 28 (53):81-83.
    Has science already answered the fundamental questions about the concepts of Life, Cosmos and Evolution? Has science not relegated these fundamental questions by following up on more immediate, “useful” and practical endeavors that ultimately ensure that the wheel of capitalism keeps spinning in its frantic search for material and economic progress? There is something terribly wrong with the current theory of evolution, understood as the Darwinian theory with its successive versions and extensions. The concept of natural selection, the cornerstone of (...)
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  7. Inclusive Fitness as a Criterion for Improvement.Jonathan Birch - 2019 - Studies in History and Philosophy of Science Part C: Studies in History and Philosophy of Biological and Biomedical Sciences 76:101186.
    I distinguish two roles for a fitness concept in the context of explaining cumulative adaptive evolution: fitness as a predictor of gene frequency change, and fitness as a criterion for phenotypic improvement. Critics of inclusive fitness argue, correctly, that it is not an ideal fitness concept for the purpose of predicting gene-frequency change, since it relies on assumptions about the causal structure of social interaction that are unlikely to be exactly true in real populations, and that hold as approximations only (...)
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  8. Is Psychopathy a Harmful Dysfunction?Marko Jurjako - 2019 - Biology and Philosophy 34 (5):1-23.
    In their paper “Is psychopathy a mental disease?”, Thomas Nadelhoffer and Walter Sinnott-Armstrong argue that according to any plausible account of mental disorder, neural and psychological abnormalities correlated with psychopathy should be regarded as signs of a mental disorder. I oppose this conclusion by arguing that at least on a naturalistically grounded account, such as Wakefield’s ‘Harmful Dysfunction’ view, currently available empirical data and evolutionary considerations indicate that psychopathy is not a mental disorder. For an online version of the paper, (...)
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  9. The Ideological Matrix of Science: Natural Selection and Immunity as Case Studies.Agustin Ostachuk - 2019 - Cosmos and History: The Journal of Natural and Social Philosophy 15 (1):182-213.
    The modern concept of ideology was established by the liberal politician and philosopher Destutt de Tracy, with the objective of creating an all-embracing and general science of ideas, which followed the sensualist and empiricist trend initiated by Locke that culminated in the positivism of Comte. Natural selection and immunity are two key concepts in the history of biology that were strongly based on the Malthusian concept of struggle for existence. This concept wrongly assumed that population grew faster than the means (...)
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  10. The Organism and its Umwelt: A Counterpoint Between the Theories of Uexküll, Goldstein and Canguilhem.Agustin Ostachuk - 2019 - In Jakob von Uexküll and Philosophy: Life, Environments, Anthropology. Londres, Reino Unido: pp. 158-171.
    The topic of the relationship between the organism and its environment runs through the theories of Uexküll, Goldstein and Canguilhem with equal importance. In this work a counterpoint will be established between their theories, in the attempt to assess at which points the melodies are concordant and at which points they are discordant. As fundamental basis to his theory, Uexküll relies on the concept of conformity to a plan, which allows him to account for the congruity and perfect adjustment between (...)
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  11. Fitness Maximization.Jonathan Birch - 2018 - In Richard Joyce (ed.), The Routledge Handbook of Evolution and Philosophy. London: Routledge. pp. 49-63.
    Is there any way to reconcile the adaptationist’s image of natural selection as an engine of optimality with the more complex image of its dynamics we get from population genetics? This has long been an important strand in the controversy surrounding adaptationism, yet debate has been hampered by a tendency to conflate various different ways of thinking about maximization. Here I distinguish four varieties of maximization principle. I then discuss the logical relations between these varieties, arguing that, although they may (...)
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  12. Life: the Center of our Existence.Agustin Ostachuk - 2018 - Ludus Vitalis 26 (50):257-260.
    Life is the center of our existence. One would be tempted to say that first of all we live. However, our existence does not seem to pass in that modality. The exacerbated materialism in which our existence takes place, displaces life from the center of the scene. Our society is organized around production, consumerism, exploitation, efficiency, trade and propaganda. That is to say, our existence seems to have economy as the center of organization of our activities. The struggle of this (...)
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  13. Review of Adapting Minds Evolutionary Psychology and the Persistent Quest for Human Nature by Buller (2006).Michael Starks - 2017 - Philosophy, Human Nature and the Collapse of Civilization Michael Starks 3rd Ed. (2017).
    I bought this thinking anything from Bradford books and MIT must be good. Instead it's a boring, stupid, incompetent, antiscientific and antirational piece of closet creationist trash. Heads should roll at Bradford for this atrocity! If you must then start by reading the last chapter first as he conceals a frank statement of his anti-rationality til the end. I made detailed notes on it as I thought it was a serious work of science and was going to do a long (...)
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  14. Hamilton’s Two Conceptions of Social Fitness.Jonathan Birch - 2016 - Philosophy of Science 83 (5):848-860.
    Hamilton introduced two conceptions of social fitness, which he called neighbour-modulated fitness and inclusive fitness. Although he regarded them as formally equivalent, a re-analysis of his own argument for their equivalence brings out two important assumptions on which it rests: weak additivity and actor's control. When weak additivity breaks down, neither fitness concept is appropriate in its original form. When actor's control breaks down, neighbour-modulated fitness may be appropriate, but inclusive fitness is not. Yet I argue that, despite its more (...)
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  15. Playing the Old Tunes: A Fiskean Analysis of Baz Luhrmann’s 2013 Cinematic Adaptation of The Great Gatsby.Marjan Khodamoradpour & Alireza Anushiravani - 2016 - International Letters of Social and Humanistic Sciences 71:60-70.
    Source: Author: Marjan Khodamoradpour, Alireza Anushiravani Scott Fitzgerald’s The Great Gatsby has been adapted many times by different directors. However, the two prominent adaptations standing out throughout history are Jay Clayton’s 1974 adaptation as the most sincere rendering of the book, and the recently adapted movie by the Broadway director, Baz Luhrmann. The latter adaptation is important in that it has been accomplished in the age of technology, in 3D format, and at the time of the new readings, i.e. cultural (...)
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  16. From Developmental Constraint to Evolvability: How Concepts Figure in Explanation and Disciplinary Identity.Ingo Brigandt - 2015 - In Alan C. Love (ed.), Conceptual Change in Biology: Scientific and Philosophical Perspectives on Evolution and Development. Dordrecht: Springer. pp. 305-325.
    The concept of developmental constraint was at the heart of developmental approaches to evolution of the 1980s. While this idea was widely used to criticize neo-Darwinian evolutionary theory, critique does not yield an alternative framework that offers evolutionary explanations. In current Evo-devo the concept of constraint is of minor importance, whereas notions as evolvability are at the center of attention. The latter clearly defines an explanatory agenda for evolutionary research, so that one could view the historical shift from ‘developmental constraint’ (...)
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  17. Neither Adaptive Thinking nor Reverse Engineering: Methods in the Evolutionary Social Sciences.Catherine Driscoll - 2015 - Biology and Philosophy 30 (1):59-75.
    In this paper I argue the best examples of the methods in the evolutionary social sciences don’t actually resemble either of the two methods called “Adaptive Thinking” or “Reverse Engineering” described by evolutionary psychologists. Both AT and RE have significant problems. Instead, the best adaptationist work in the ESSs seems to be based on and is aiming at a different method that avoids the problems of AT and RE: it is a behavioral level method that starts with information about both (...)
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  18. How (Not) to Bring Psychology and Biology Together.Mark Fedyk - 2015 - Philosophical Studies 172 (4):949-967.
    Evolutionary psychologists often try to “bring together” biology and psychology by making predictions about what specific psychological mechanisms exist from theories about what patterns of behaviour would have been adaptive in the EEA for humans. This paper shows that one of the deepest methodological generalities in evolutionary biology—that proximate explanations and ultimate explanations stand in a many-to-many relation—entails that this inferential strategy is unsound. Ultimate explanations almost never entail the truth of any particular proximate hypothesis. But of course it does (...)
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  19. Design Sans Adaptation.Sara Green, Arnon Levy & William Bechtel - 2015 - European Journal for Philosophy of Science 5 (1):15-29.
    Design thinking in general, and optimality modeling in particular, have traditionally been associated with adaptationism—a research agenda that gives pride of place to natural selection in shaping biological characters. Our goal is to evaluate the role of design thinking in non-evolutionary analyses. Specifically, we focus on research into abstract design principles that underpin the functional organization of extant organisms. Drawing on case studies from engineering-inspired approaches in biology we show how optimality analysis, and other design-related methods, play a specific methodological (...)
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  20. Adaptationism and the Logic of Research Questions: How to Think Clearly About Evolutionary Causes.Elisabeth A. Lloyd - 2015 - Biological Theory 10 (4):DOI: 10.1007/s13752-015-0214-2.
    This article discusses various dangers that accompany the supposedly benign methods in behavioral evoltutionary biology and evolutionary psychology that fall under the framework of "methodological adaptationism." A "Logic of Research Questions" is proposed that aids in clarifying the reasoning problems that arise due to the framework under critique. The live, and widely practiced, " evolutionary factors" framework is offered as the key comparison and alternative. The article goes beyond the traditional critique of Stephen Jay Gould and Richard C. Lewontin, to (...)
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  21. How to Study Adaptation (and Why to Do It That Way).Mark E. Olson & Alfonso Arroyo-Santos - 2015 - Quarterly Review of Biology 90 (2):167-191.
    Some adaptationist explanations are regarded as maximally solid and others fanciful just-so stories. Just-so stories are explanations based on very little evidence. Lack of evidence leads to circular-sounding reasoning: “this trait was shaped by selection in unseen ancestral populations and this selection must have occurred because the trait is present.” Well-supported adaptationist explanations include evidence that is not only abundant but selected from comparative, populational, and optimality perspectives, the three adaptationist subdisciplines. Each subdiscipline obtains its broad relevance in evolutionary biology (...)
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  22. The Genomic Challenge to Adaptationism.Sahotra Sarkar - 2015 - British Journal for the Philosophy of Science 66 (3):505-536.
    Since the late 1990s, the characterization of complete DNA sequences for a large and taxonomically diverse set of species has continued to gain in speed and accuracy. Sequence analyses have indicated a strikingly baroque structure for most eukaryotic genomes, with multiple repeats of DNA sequences and with very little of the DNA specifying proteins. Much of the DNA in these genomes has no known function. These results have generated strong interest in the factors that govern the evolution of genome architecture. (...)
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  23. From Aristotle’s Teleology to Darwin’s Genealogy: The Stamp of Inutility, Basingstoke: Palgrave Macmillan, 2015 (Pdf: Contents, Introduction).Marco Solinas - 2015 - Palgrave-Macmillan.
    Starting with Aristotle and moving on to Darwin, Marco Solinas outlines the basic steps from the birth, establishment and later rebirth of the traditional view of living beings, and its overturning by evolutionary revolution. The classic framework devised by Aristotle was still dominant in the 17th Century world of Galileo, Harvey and Ray, and remained hegemonic until the time of Lamarck and Cuvier in the 19th Century. Darwin's breakthrough thus takes on the dimensions of an abandonment of the traditional finalistic (...)
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  24. Scientific Realism, Adaptationism and the Problem of the Criterion.Fabio Sterpetti - 2015 - Kairos 13 (1):7-45.
    Scientific Realism (SR) has three crucial aspects: 1) the centrality of the concept of truth, 2) the idea that success is a reliable indicator of truth, and 3) the idea that the Inference to the Best Explanation is a reliable inference rule. It will be outlined how some realists try to overcome the difficulties which arise in justifying such crucial aspects relying on an adaptationist view of evolutionism, and why such attempts are inadequate. Finally, we will briefly sketch some of (...)
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  25. Adaptation, Science de la Durabilité Et Pensée Planificatrice.Vincent Berdoulay & Olivier Soubeyran - 2014 - Natures Sciences Sociétés 22 (2):114-123.
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  26. Has Grafen Formalized Darwin?Jonathan Birch - 2014 - Biology and Philosophy 29 (2):175-180.
    One key aim of Grafen’s Formal Darwinism project is to formalize ‘modern biology’s understanding and updating of Darwin’s central argument’. In this commentary, I consider whether Grafen has succeeded in this aim.
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  27. Evolutionary Psychology.Stephen M. Downes - 2014 - Stanford Encyclopedia of Philosophy.
    This is an updated version of my Stanford Encyclopedia entry on Evolutionary Psychology. The 2018 version contains a new section on Human Nature as well as some new material on recent developments in Evolutionary Psychology.
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  28. A Philosophical Evaluation of Adaptationism as a Heuristic Strategy.Sara Green - 2014 - Acta Biotheoretica 62 (4):479-498.
    Adaptationism has for decades been the topic of sophisticated debates in philosophy of biology but methodological adaptationism has not received as much attention as the empirical and explanatory issues. In addition, adaptationism has mainly been discussed in the context of evolutionary biology and not in fields such as zoophysiology and systems biology where this heuristic is also used in design analyses of physiological traits and molecular structures. This paper draws on case studies from these fields to discuss the productive and (...)
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  29. The Evolutionary Psychology of Human Mating: A Response to Buller's Critique.John Klasios - 2014 - Studies in History and Philosophy of Science Part C: Studies in History and Philosophy of Biological and Biomedical Sciences 47:1-11.
    In this paper, I critique arguments made by philosopher David Buller against central evolutionary-psychological explanations of human mating. Specifically, I aim to rebut his criticisms of Evolutionary Psychology regarding (1) women's long-term mating preferences for high-status men; (2) the evolutionary rationale behind men's provisioning of women; (3) men's mating preferences for young women; (4) women's adaptation for extra-pair sex; (5) the sex-differentiated evolutionary theory of human jealousy; and (6) the notion of mate value. In sum, I aim to demonstrate that (...)
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  30. Adaptation, Fitness and the Selection-Optimality Links.Samir Okasha & Cédric Paternotte - 2014 - Biology and Philosophy 29 (2):225-232.
    We critically examine a number of aspects of Grafen’s ‘formal Darwinism’ project. We argue that Grafen’s ‘selection-optimality’ links do not quite succeed in vindicating the working assumption made by behavioural ecologists and others—that selection will lead organisms to exhibit adaptive behaviour—since these links hold true even in the presence of strong genetic and developmental constraints. However we suggest that the selection-optimality links can profitably be viewed as constituting an axiomatic theory of fitness. Finally, we compare Grafen’s project with Fisher’s ‘fundamental (...)
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  31. Horizontal Gene Acquisitions by Eukaryotes as Drivers of Adaptive Evolution.Gerald Schönknecht, Andreas Pm Weber & Martin J. Lercher - 2014 - Bioessays 36 (1):9-20.
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  32. Adaptation, Conflicting Information, and Stress.Minus van Baalen - 2014 - Biological Theory 9 (4):431-439.
    Information plays an important role not only in evolution—genetics can be seen as a mechanism to transfer information from one generation to the next—but also in ecology: virtually all organisms use information about their environment to adjust their behavior and life histories. Indeed, being adapted to something can be defined as having the right information to solve the life-history problems that this creates. It then becomes irrelevant precisely where this information came from but rather becomes an issue of how to (...)
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  33. The Mismeasure of Machine: Synthetic Biology and the Trouble with Engineering Metaphors.Maarten Boudry & Massimo Pigliucci - 2013 - Studies in History and Philosophy of Science Part C: Studies in History and Philosophy of Biological and Biomedical Sciences 44 (4):660-668.
    The scientific study of living organisms is permeated by machine and design metaphors. Genes are thought of as the ‘‘blueprint’’ of an organism, organisms are ‘‘reverse engineered’’ to discover their functionality, and living cells are compared to biochemical factories, complete with assembly lines, transport systems, messenger circuits, etc. Although the notion of design is indispensable to think about adaptations, and engineering analogies have considerable heuristic value (e.g., optimality assumptions), we argue they are limited in several important respects. In particular, the (...)
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  34. The Notion of Limited Perfect Adaptedness in Darwin's Principle of Divergence.Leonore Fleming - 2013 - Perspectives on Science 21 (1):1-22.
    Darwin begins On the Origin of Species by asking the reader to “reflect on the vast diversity of the plants and animals which have been cultivated” (1859, p. 7); almost five-hundred pages later, he closes by having the reader consider the “endless forms most beautiful and wonderful” that have evolved (1859, p. 490). Darwin contemplates diversity throughout the Origin and presents the principle of divergence as a way to explain it. Darwin formulated the principle of divergence around 1857 (Browne 1980), (...)
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  35. Chapter Four. Adaptation, Construction, Function.Peter Godfrey-Smith - 2013 - In Philosophy of Biology. Princeton University Press. pp. 50-65.
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  36. Constraining the Air Giants: Limits on Size in Flying Animals as an Example of Constraint-Based Biomechanical Theories of Form. [REVIEW]Michael Habib - 2013 - Biological Theory 8 (3):245-252.
    The study of biomechanics most often takes a classic adaptationist approach, examining the functional abilities of organisms in relation to what is allowed by physical parameters. This approach generally assumes strong selection and is less concerned with evolutionary stochasticity in determining the presence of biological traits. It is equally important, however, to consider the importance of constraint in determining the form of organisms. If selection is relatively weak compared to stochastic events, then the observed forms in living systems can be (...)
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  37. Cognitive Traits as Sexually Selected Fitness Indicators.John Klasios - 2013 - Review of General Psychology 17 (4):428-442.
    The evolutionary psychologist Geoffrey Miller has argued that various features of human psychology have been sculpted, at least in part, by the evolutionary process of sexual selection via mate choice. This paper specifically examines the central claim of Miller’s account, namely that certain cognitive traits have evolved to function as good genes fitness indicators. First, I expound on and clarify key foundational concepts comprising the focal hypothesis, especially condition-dependence, mutation target size, and mutation-selection balance. Second, I proceed to highlight some (...)
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  38. The Umwelt of Uexküll and Merleau-Ponty.Agustin Ostachuk - 2013 - Ludus Vitalis 21 (39):45-65.
    The organism against its environment. The organism against other organisms, competing and struggling for life. Antagonism and confrontment as the only possible relation in nature. The tendency to anthropomorphize nature and explain it using concepts and facts from the human sphere. A stroll through the worlds of Uexküll and Merleau-Ponty in the search of alternative knowledge that allow us to understand relation from another point of view. A counterpoint and identification of common tonalities between the research programs from both thinkers (...)
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  39. Shared Adaptiveness is Not Group Adaptation.Cédric Paternotte - 2013 - Behavioral and Brain Sciences 36 (5):499-500.
    Climate stresses and monetary resources seem to lead to different collective adaptations. However, the reference to adaptation and to ambiguous collective dimensions appears premature; populations may entertain nothing more than shared adaptiveness. At this point, the intricacy of the underlying evolutionary processes (cultural selection, fitness-utility decoupling) very much obscures any diagnosis based on correlations.
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  40. Adaptationism and Adaptive Thinking in Evolutionary Psychology.Matthew Rellihan - 2012 - Philosophical Psychology 25 (2):245-277.
    Evolutionary psychologists attempt to infer our evolved psychology from the selection pressures present in our ancestral environments. Their use of this inference strategy?often called ?adaptive thinking??is thought to be justified by way of appeal to a rather modest form of adaptationism, according to which the mind's adaptive complexity reveals it to be a product of selection. I argue, on the contrary, that the mind's being an adaptation is only a necessary and not a sufficient condition for the validity of adaptive (...)
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  41. L'impronta dell'inutilità. Dalla teleologia di Aristotele alle genealogie di Darwin (pdf: Introduzione).Marco Solinas - 2012 - ETS.
    The book aims to offer a contribution to the historiographical and conceptual reconfiguration of the evolutionary revolution in the light of the centuries-old tenets of the Aristotelian biological tradition. Darwin’s breakthrough constitutes a thorough overturning of the fixist, essentialist and teleological framework created by Aristotle, a framework still dominant in the 17th Century world of Harvey and Ray, as well as Galileo, and then hegemonic until Linnaeus and Cuvier. This change is exemplified in the morphological analysis of useless parts, such (...)
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  42. Evolutionary Medicine at Twenty: Rethinking Adaptationism and Disease. [REVIEW]Sean A. Valles - 2012 - Biology and Philosophy 27 (2):241-261.
    Two decades ago, the eminent evolutionary biologist George C. Williams and his physician coauthor, Randolph Nesse, formulated the evolutionary medicine research program. Williams and Nesse explicitly made adaptationism a core component of the new program, which has served to undermine the program ever since, distorting its practitioners’ perceptions of evidentiary burdens and in extreme cases has served to warp practitioner’s understandings of the relationship between evolutionary benefits/detriments and medical ones. I show that the Williams and Nesse program more particularly embraces (...)
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  43. Evolutionary Theory and Psychopathy.Andrea Glenn, R. Kurzban & Adrian Raine - 2011 - Aggression and Violent Behavior 16:371-380.
    Psychopathy represents a unique set of personality traits including deceitfulness, lack of empathy and guilt, impulsiveness, and antisocial behavior. Most often in the literature, psychopathy is described as pathology — a disorder that has been linked to a variety of biological deficits and environmental risk factors. However, from an evolutionary perspective, psychopathy, while it could be a disorder, has been construed in the context of an adaptive strategy. In this article we will examine the strengths and weaknesses of two models (...)
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  44. Adaptationism, Deflationism, and Anti-Individualism.Tomas Hribek - 2011 - In Tomas Hribek & Juraj Hvorecky (eds.), Knowledge, Value, Evolution. Londýn, Velká Británie: pp. 167-187.
    An examination of the externalist theories of Tyler Burge, Daniel Dennett and Ruth Millikan.
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  45. Evolution: A View From the 21st Century James Shapiro Upper Saddle River, NJ: FT Press Science, 2011.Alexander Powell - 2011 - Genomics, Society and Policy 7 (1):1-9.
  46. Female Sexual Arousal: Genital Anatomy and Orgasm in Intercourse.Kim Wallen & Elisabeth A. Lloyd - 2011 - Hormones and Behavior 59:780-792.
    In men and women sexual arousal culminates in orgasm, with female orgasm solely from sexual intercourse often regarded as a unique feature of human sexuality. However, orgasm from sexual intercourse occurs more reliably in men than in women, likely reflecting the different types of physical stimulation men and women require for orgasm. In men, orgasms are under strong selective pressure as orgasms are coupled with ejaculation and thus contribute to male reproductive success. By contrast, women's orgasms in intercourse are highly (...)
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  47. Generic Properties of Evolutionary Games and Adaptationism.Simon M. Huttegger - 2010 - Journal of Philosophy 107 (2):80-102.
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  48. Dossier « Adaptation aux Changements Climatiques » – Questions de Recherche Autour de L’Adaptation au Changement Climatique.Alexandre Magnan - 2010 - Natures Sciences Sociétés 18 (3):329-333.
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  49. Adaptationism.Steven Hecht Orzack - 2010 - Stanford Encyclopedia of Philosophy.
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  50. Introduction: A Primer on Adaptationism.Patrick Forber - 2009 - Biology and Philosophy 24 (2):155-159.
    Evolutionary biology, indeed any science that attempts to reconstruct prehistory, faces practical limitations on available data. These limitations create the problem of contrast failure: specific observations may fail to discriminate between rival evolutionary hypotheses. Assessing the risk of contrast failure provides a way to evaluate testing protocols in evolutionary science. Here I will argue that part of the methodological critique in the Spandrels paper involves diagnosing contrast failure problems. I then distinguish the problem of contrast failure from the more familiar (...)
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