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  1. A Part-Dependent Account of Biological Individuality: Why Holobionts Are Individuals and Ecosystems Simultaneously.Javier Suárez & Adrian Stencel - 2020 - Biological Reviews.
    Given one conception of biological individuality (evolutionary, physiological, etc.), can a holobiont – that is the host + its symbiotic (mutualistic, commensalist and parasitic) microbiome – be simultaneously a biological individual and an ecological community? Herein, we support this possibility by arguing that the notion of biological individuality is part‐dependent. In our account, the individuality of a biological ensemble should not only be determined by the conception of biological individuality in use, but also by the biological characteristics of the part (...)
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  2. The stability of traits conception of the hologenome: An evolutionary account of holobiont individuality.Javier Suárez - 2020 - History and Philosophy of the Life Sciences 42 (1):1-27.
    Bourrat and Griffiths :33, 2018) have recently argued that most of the evidence presented by holobiont defenders to support the thesis that holobionts are evolutionary individuals is not to the point and is not even adequate to discriminate multispecies evolutionary individuals from other multispecies assemblages that would not be considered evolutionary individuals by most holobiont defenders. They further argue that an adequate criterion to distinguish the two categories is fitness alignment, presenting the notion of fitness boundedness as a criterion that (...)
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  3. Introduction.Robert A. Wilson - 1999 - In Species: New Interdisciplinary Essays. Cambridge, MA, USA:
    This volume of twelve specially commissioned essays about species draws on the perspectives of prominent researchers from anthropology , botany, developmental psychology , the philosophy of biology and science, protozoology, and zoology . The concept of species has played a focal role in both evolutionary biology and the philosophy of biology , and the last decade has seen something of a publication boom on the topic (e.g., Otte and Endler 1989; Ereshefsky 1992b; Paterson 1994; lambert and Spence 1995; Claridge, Dawah, (...)
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  4. The Hologenome Concept of Evolution: A Philosophical and Biological Study.Javier Suárez - 2019 - Dissertation, University of Exeter
    The hologenome concept of evolution is a hypothesis about the evolution of animals and plants. It asserts that the evolution of animals and plants was partially triggered by their interactions with their symbiotic microbiomes. In that vein, the hologenome concept posits that the holobiont (animal host + symbionts of the microbiome) is a unit of selection. -/- The hologenome concept has been severely criticized on the basis that selection on holobionts would only be possible if there were a tight transgenerational (...)
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  5. Biological Individuals.Robert A. Wilson & Matthew J. Barker - 2019 - Stanford Encyclopedia of Philosophy 1 (1).
    The impressive variation amongst biological individuals generates many complexities in addressing the simple-sounding question what is a biological individual? A distinction between evolutionary and physiological individuals is useful in thinking about biological individuals, as is attention to the kinds of groups, such as superorganisms and species, that have sometimes been thought of as biological individuals. More fully understanding the conceptual space that biological individuals occupy also involves considering a range of other concepts, such as life, reproduction, and agency. There has (...)
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  6. The Social Evolution of Human Nature: From Biology to Language. [REVIEW]Ryan M. Nefdt - 2019 - Philosophical Quarterly 69 (277):874-877.
    The Social Evolution of Human Nature: From Biology to Language. By Smit Harry.
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  7. El mecanismo evolutivo de Margulis y los niveles de selección.Javier Suárez - 2016 - Contrastes: Revista Internacional de Filosofía 1 (20):7-26.
    Margulis’ evolutionary theory entails a revision of certain core concepts of traditional biology. One of these changes is related to the hot debate about units of selection. This paper considers Margulis’ proposal as a new research tradition (RT) and evaluates its consequences to the mentioned issue. Three ideas are suggested here: firstly, that her theory represents the revision of many classical biological concepts; secondly, that her position implies a reappraisal of many traditional issues in philosophy of biology; and thirdly, that (...)
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  8. A Metaphysical Approach to Holobiont Individuality: Holobionts as Emergent Individuals.Javier Suárez & Vanessa Triviño - 2019 - Quaderns de Filosofia 6 (1):59-76.
    Holobionts are symbiotic assemblages composed by a host plus its microbiome. The status of holobionts as individuals has recently been a subject of continuous controversy, which has given rise to two main positions: on the one hand, holobiont advocates argue that holobionts are biological individuals; on the other, holobiont detractors argue that they are just mere chimeras or ecological communities, but not individuals. Both parties in the dispute develop their arguments from the framework of the philosophy of biology, in terms (...)
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  9. Moving Past the Levels of Selection Debates: Samir Okasha, Evolution and the Levels of Selection, Oxford University Press, Oxford, 2006.Stephen M. Downes - 2009 - Biology and Philosophy 24 (5):703-709.
  10. Cancer Stem Cells Modulate Patterns and Processes of Evolution in Cancers.Lucie Laplane - 2018 - Biology and Philosophy 33 (3-4):18.
    The clonal evolution model and the cancer stem cell model are two independent models of cancers, yet recent data shows intersections between the two models. This article explores the impacts of the CSC model on the CE model. I show that CSC restriction, which depends on CSC frequency in cancer cell populations and on the probability of dedifferentiation of cancer non-stem cells into CSCs, can favor or impede some patterns of evolution and some processes of evolution. Taking CSC restriction into (...)
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  11. Selection at Multiple Levels: Evolution and the Levels of Selection, Samir Okasha . Oxford: Oxford University Press, 2006, (288 Pp; £32.00 Hbk; ISBN 978-0-19-926797-2). [REVIEW]Simon M. Huttegger - 2007 - Biological Theory 2 (4):429-431.
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  12. Samir Okasha, Evolution and the Levels of Selection. Oxford: Oxford University Press , 263 Pp., $55.00.Alirio Rosales - 2008 - Philosophy of Science 75 (2):254-256.
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  13. In Defence of Generalized Darwinism.Howard E. Aldrich, Geoffrey M. Hodgson, David L. Hull, Thorbjørn Knudsen, Joel Mokyr & Viktor J. Vanberg - 2008 - Journal of Evolutionary Economics 18:577-596.
    Darwin himself suggested the idea of generalizing the core Darwinian principles to cover the evolution of social entities. Also in the nineteenth century, influential social scientists proposed their extension to political society and economic institutions. Nevertheless, misunderstanding and misrepresentation have hindered the realization of the powerful potential in this longstanding idea. Some critics confuse generalization with analogy. Others mistakenly presume that generalizing Darwinism necessarily involves biological reductionism. This essay outlines the types of phenomena to which a generalized Darwinism applies, and (...)
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  14. Levels of Selection in Darwin’s Origin of Species.Gordon Chancellor - 2015 - History and Philosophy of the Life Sciences 37 (2):131-157.
    References in Darwin’s Origin of Species to competition between units of selection at and above the level of individual organisms are enumerated. In many cases these references clearly speak of natural selection and do not support the view that Darwin thought selection only occurred at the level of the individual organism. Darwin did see organismal selection as the main process by which varieties were created but he also espoused what is here termed community and varietal selection. He saw no essential (...)
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  15. Multi-Level Selection and the Issue of Environmental Homogeneity.Ciprian Jeler - 2017 - Biology and Philosophy 32 (5):651-681.
    In this paper, I identify two general positions with respect to the relationship between environment and natural selection. These positions consist in claiming that selective claims need and, respectively, need not be relativized to homogenous environments. I then show that adopting one or the other position makes a difference with respect to the way in which the effects of selection are to be measured in certain cases in which the focal population is distributed over heterogeneous environments. Moreover, I show that (...)
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  16. The Representation of Protein Complexes in the Protein Ontology.Carol Bult, Harold Drabkin, Alexei Evsikov, Darren Natale, Cecilia Arighi, Natalia Roberts, Alan Ruttenberg, Peter D’Eustachio, Barry Smith, Judith Blake & Cathy Wu - 2011 - BMC Bioinformatics 12 (371):1-11.
    Representing species-specific proteins and protein complexes in ontologies that are both human and machine-readable facilitates the retrieval, analysis, and interpretation of genome-scale data sets. Although existing protin-centric informatics resources provide the biomedical research community with well-curated compendia of protein sequence and structure, these resources lack formal ontological representations of the relationships among the proteins themselves. The Protein Ontology (PRO) Consortium is filling this informatics resource gap by developing ontological representations and relationships among proteins and their variants and modified forms. Because (...)
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  17. Is Evolution Fundamental When It Comes to Defining Biological Ontology?Ellen Clarke - forthcoming - In Shamik Dasgupta & Brad Westlake (eds.), Current Controversies in Philosophy of Science. Routledge.
    I argue for the usefulness of the evolutionary kind of biological individual.
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  18. It’s the Song, Not the Singer: An Exploration of Holobiosis and Evolutionary Theory.W. Ford Doolittle & Austin Booth - 2017 - Biology and Philosophy 32 (1):5-24.
    That holobionts are units of selection squares poorly with the observation that microbes are often recruited from the environment, not passed down vertically from parent to offspring, as required for collective reproduction. The taxonomic makeup of a holobiont’s microbial community may vary over its lifetime and differ from that of conspecifics. In contrast, biochemical functions of the microbiota and contributions to host biology are more conserved, with taxonomically variable but functionally similar microbes recurring across generations and hosts. To save what (...)
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  19. Unto Others.David Sloan Wilson & Elliott Sober - 2002 - Philosophy and Phenomenological Research 65 (3):681-684.
    It is a challenge to explain how evolutionary altruism can evolve by the process of natural selection, since altruists in a group will be less fit than the selfish individuals in the same group who receive benefits but do not make donations of their own. Darwin proposed a theory of group selection to solve this puzzle. Very simply, even though altruists are less fit than selfish individuals within any single group, groups of altruists are more fit than groups of selfish (...)
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  20. The Extended Phenotype: The Gene as the Unit of Selection. Richard Dawkins.Robert C. Richardson - 1984 - Philosophy of Science 51 (2):357-359.
  21. Coherence, Consistency, and Cohesion: Clade Selection in Okasha and Beyond.Matthew H. Haber & Andrew Hamilton - 2005 - Philosophy of Science 72 (5):1026-1040.
    Samir Okasha argues that clade selection is an incoherent concept, because the relation that constitutes clades is such that it renders parent-offspring (reproduction) relations between clades impossible. He reasons that since clades cannot reproduce, it is not coherent to speak of natural selection operating at the clade level. We argue, however, that when species-level lineages and clade-level lineages are treated consistently according to standard cladist commitments, clade reproduction is indeed possible and clade selection is coherent if certain conditions obtain. Despite (...)
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  22. A Levels-of-Selection Approach to Evolutionary Individuality.Ellen Clarke - 2016 - Biology and Philosophy 31 (6):893-911.
    What changes when an evolutionary transition in individuality takes place? Many different answers have been given, in respect of different cases of actual transition, but some have suggested a general answer: that a major transition is a change in the extent to which selection acts at one hierarchical level rather than another. The current paper evaluates some different ways to develop this general answer as a way to characterise the property ‘evolutionary individuality’; and offers a justification of the option taken (...)
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  23. Principles of Selection in Animal Learning.Harvey Carr - 1914 - Psychological Review 21 (3):157-165.
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  24. A Persistence Enhancing Propensity Account of Ecological Function to Explain Ecosystem Evolution.Antoine C. Dussault & Frédéric Bouchard - 2017 - Synthese 194 (4).
    We argue that ecology in general and biodiversity and ecosystem function research in particular need an understanding of functions which is both ahistorical and evolutionarily grounded. A natural candidate in this context is Bigelow and Pargetter’s evolutionary forward-looking account which, like the causal role account, assigns functions to parts of integrated systems regardless of their past history, but supplements this with an evolutionary dimension that relates functions to their bearers’ ability to thrive and perpetuate themselves. While Bigelow and Pargetter’s account (...)
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  25. Philosophical Dimensions of Individuality.Alan C. Love & Ingo Brigandt - 2017 - In Scott Lidgard & Lynn K. Nyhart (eds.), Biological Individuality: Integrating Scientific, Philosophical, and Historical Perspectives. Chicago: University of Chicago Press. pp. 318–348.
    Although natural philosophers have long been interested in individuality, it has been of interest to contemporary philosophers of biology because of its role in different aspects of evolutionary biology. These debates include whether species are individuals or classes, what counts as a unit of selection, and how transitions in individuality occur evolutionarily. Philosophical analyses are often conducted in terms of metaphysics (“what is an individual?”), rather than epistemology (“how can and do researchers conceptualize individuals so as to address some of (...)
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  26. Do We Need a New Account of Group Selection? A Reply to McLoone: Brian McLoone—Some Criticism of the Contextual Approach, and a Few Proposals.Ciprian Jeler - 2016 - Biological Theory 11 (2):57-68.
    In "Some Criticism of the Contextual Approach, and a Few Proposals" in Biological Theory, Brian McLoone discusses some of the points about the contextual approach that I made in a recent paper. Besides offering a reply to McLoone’s comments on my paper, in this article I show why McLoone’s discussion of the two main frameworks for thinking about group selection—the contextual and the Price approach—is partly misguided. In particular, I show that one of McLoone’s main arguments against the contextual approach (...)
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  27. In Defence of Classification.John Dupré - 2001 - Studies in History and Philosophy of Science Part C: Studies in History and Philosophy of Biological and Biomedical Sciences 32 (2):203-219.
    It has increasingly been recognised that units of biological classification cannot be identified with the units of evolution. After briefly defending the necessity of this distinction I argue, contrary to the prevailing orthodoxy, that species should be treated as the fundamental units of classification and not, therefore, as units of evolution. This perspective fits well with the increasing tendency to reject the search for a monistic basis of classification and embrace a pluralistic and pragmatic account of the species category. It (...)
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  28. The Emergence of Selection Rules and Their Encounter with Group Theory, 1913–1927.Arianna Borrelli - 2009 - Studies in History and Philosophy of Science Part B: Studies in History and Philosophy of Modern Physics 40 (4):327-337.
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  29. Organizational Levels and Explanation.Clifford Grobstein - 1969 - Journal of the History of Biology 2 (1):199-206.
  30. Screening-Off and The Levels of Selection.Ron McClamrock - 1995 - Erkenntnis 42 (1):107-112.
    In The Levels of Selection (Brandon, 1984), Robert Brandon provides a suggestive but ultimately unsuccessful attempt to use the probabilistic notion ofscreening off in providing a schema for dealing with an aspect of the units of selection question in the philosophy of biology. I characterize that failure, and suggest a revision and expansion of Brandon's account which addresses its key shortcoming.
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  31. The Evolution of Failure: Explaining Cancer as an Evolutionary Process.Christopher Lean & Anya Plutynski - 2016 - Biology and Philosophy 31 (1):39-57.
    One of the major developments in cancer research in recent years has been the construction of models that treat cancer as a cellular population subject to natural selection. We expand on this idea, drawing upon multilevel selection theory. Cancer is best understood in our view from a multilevel perspective, as both a by-product of selection at other levels of organization, and as subject to selection at several levels of organization. Cancer is a by-product in two senses. First, cancer cells co-opt (...)
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  32. Memes and the Ecological Niche.Deby L. Cassill & Benjamin E. Hardisty - 2010 - Biological Theory 5 (2):109-111.
  33. The Selfish Gene Revisited: Reconciliation of Williams-Dawkins and Conventional Definitions.Donald R. Forsdyke - 2010 - Biological Theory 5 (3):246-255.
    Sightings of the revolutionary comet that appeared in the skies of evolutionary biology in 1976—the selfish gene—date back to the 19th and early 20th centuries. It became generally recognized that genes were located on chromosomes and compete with each other in a manner consistent with the later appellation “selfish.” Chromosomes were seen as disruptable by the apparently random “cut and paste” process known as recombination. However, each gene was only a small part of its chromosome. On a statistical basis a (...)
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  34. Social Groups Go Places: Edward O. Wilson: The Social Conquest of Earth; W. W. Norton & Co., New York, 2012, 352 Pp., US $27.95, ISBN 978-0-87140-413-8.Vidyanand Nanjundiah - 2014 - Biological Theory 9 (2):236-238.
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  35. Group Selection and Group Adaptation During a Major Evolutionary Transition: Insights From the Evolution of Multicellularity in the Volvocine Algae.Deborah E. Shelton & Richard E. Michod - 2014 - Biological Theory 9 (4):452-469.
    Adaptations can occur at different hierarchical levels, but it can be difficult to identify the level of adaptation in specific cases. A major problem is that selection at a lower level can filter up, creating the illusion of selection at a higher level. We use optimality modeling of the volvocine algae to explore the emergence of genuine group adaptations. We find that it is helpful to develop an explicit model for what group fitness would be in the absence of group-level (...)
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  36. Group Selection and Methodological Individualism.Gerald Glaser - unknown - Eidos: The Canadian Graduate Journal of Philosophy 3.
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  37. Group Selection and Contextual Analysis.Eugene Earnshaw - 2015 - Synthese 192 (1):305-316.
    Multi-level selection can be understood via the Price equation or contextual analysis, which offer incompatible statistical decompositions of evolutionary change into components of group and individual selection. Okasha argued that each approach suffers from problem cases. I introduce further problem cases for the Price approach, arguing that it is appropriate for MLS 2 group selection but not MLS 1. I also show that the problem cases Okasha raises for contextual analysis can be resolved. For some such cases, however, it emerges (...)
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  38. Heresy-Hammering, Group Selection, And Epistemic Responsibility.Ronnie Hawkins - 2008 - Florida Philosophical Review 8 (1):189-212.
    The way in which the theory of “group selection” was treated as a heresy in evolutionary biology during the latter part of the twentieth century is considered as itself being an emergent group phenomenon, and some possible reasons why this particular theory had to be repudiated by the dominant group are explored. Then the process of “heresy-hammering” in general is examined as a behavior that can block important feedback, allowing the group to engage in a form of collective selfdeception, and (...)
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  39. The Cultural Evolution of Emergent Group-Level Traits.Paul E. Smaldino - 2014 - Behavioral and Brain Sciences 37 (3):243-254.
  40. The Selfish Goal Meets the Selfish Gene.Steven L. Neuberg & Mark Schaller - 2014 - Behavioral and Brain Sciences 37 (2):153-154.
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  41. The Validity of Dawkins's Selfish Gene Theory and the Role of the Unconscious in Decision Making.Tobias A. Mattei - 2014 - Behavioral and Brain Sciences 37 (2):148-149.
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  42. Symbiosis, Selection, and Individuality.Austin Booth - 2014 - Biology and Philosophy 29 (5):657-673.
    A recent development in biology has been the growing acceptance that holobionts, entities comprised of symbiotic microbes and their host organisms, are widespread in nature. There is agreement that holobionts are evolved outcomes, but disagreement on how to characterize the operation of natural selection on them. The aim of this paper is to articulate the contours of the disagreement. I explain how two distinct foundational accounts of the process of natural selection give rise to competing views about evolutionary individuality.
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  43. Levels of Selection and the Formal Darwinism Project.Deborah E. Shelton & Richard E. Michod - 2014 - Biology and Philosophy 29 (2):217-224.
    Understanding good design requires addressing the question of what units undergo natural selection, thereby becoming adapted. There is, therefore, a natural connection between the formal Darwinism project (which aims to connect population genetics with the evolution of design and fitness maximization) and levels of selection issues. We argue that the formal Darwinism project offers contradictory and confusing lines of thinking concerning level(s) of selection. The project favors multicellular organisms over both the lower (cell) and higher (social group) levels as the (...)
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  44. The Units of Evolution: Essays on the Nature of Species.Marc Ereshefsky & Peter James - 1994 - History and Philosophy of the Life Sciences 16 (2):355.
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  45. Discussion: Screening-Off and Visibility to Selection-Reply.Robert N. Brandon - 1997 - Biology and Philosophy 12 (4):531-538.
    Christopher Hitchcock‘s discussion of my use of screening-off in analyzing the causal process of natural selection raises some interesting issues to which I am pleased to reply. The bulk of his article is devoted to some fairly general points in the theory of explanation. In particular, he questions whether or not my point that phenotype screens off genotype from reproductive success supports my claim that the explanation of differential reproductive success should be in terms of phenotypic differences, not genotypic differences. (...)
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  46. Organisms in Evolution.Johannes Martens - 2010 - History and Philosophy of the Life Sciences 32 (2/3).
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  47. Okasha’s Unintended Argument for Toolbox Theorizing.C. Kenneth Waters - 2011 - Philosophy and Phenomenological Research 82 (1):232-240.
    Okasha claims at the outset of his book "Evolution and the Levels of Selection" (2006) that the Price equation lays bare the fundamentals underlying all selection phenomena. However, the thoroughness of his subsequent analysis of multi-level selection theories leads him to abandon his fundamentalist commitments. At critical points he invokes cost benefit analyses that sometimes favors the Price approach and sometimes the contextual approach, sometimes favors MLS1 and sometimes MLS2. And although he doesn’t acknowledge it, even the Price approach breaks (...)
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  48. LEVELS OF EXPLANATION AND THE UNIT OF SELECTION: A Review of Genes, Organisms, and Populations, Edited by Robert Brandon and Richard Burian. MIT Press: Cambridge, Massachusetts. 1984.Harold Kincaid - 1986 - Behaviorism 14 (1):69-76.
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  49. Group Selection, Morality, and Environmental Problems.Iver Mysterud - 2000 - Journal of Consciousness Studies 7 (1-2):1-2.
    As various kinds of resources become scarce within the context of today's population, consumption, and environmental problems, conflicts of interest will become more evident, competition become more intense, and certain kinds of ‘unwanted’ behavioural strategies might have a tendency to emerge and be used by a growing number of individuals. In such situations, humans may activate group adaptations. If we have group adaptations, like a tendency to classify humans into in-groups and out-groups and to develop moralities favouring one's in-group, it (...)
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  50. Genes, Organisms, Populations: Controversies Over the Units of Selection.Robert N. Brandon & Richard Burian (eds.) - 1986 - Bradford.
    This anthology collects some of the most important papers on what is believed to be the major force in evolution, natural selection. An issue of great consequence in the philosophy of biology concerns the levels at which, and the units upon which selection acts. In recent years, biologists and philosophers have published a large number of papers bearing on this subject. The papers selected for inclusion in this book are divided into three main sections covering the history of the subject, (...)
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