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  1. Life as Adaptive Capacity: Bringing New Life to an Old Debate.Kelly Smith - 2018 - Biological Theory 13 (2):76-92.
    Whatever we take “life” to mean, it must involve an attempt to describe the objective reality beyond scientists’ biases. Traditionally, this is thought to involve comparing our scientific categories to “natural kinds.” But this approach has been tainted with an implicit metaphysics, inherited from Aristotle, that does not fit biological reality. In particular, we must accept that biological categories will never be specifiable in terms of necessary and sufficient conditions or shared underlying physical structures that produce clean boundaries. Biology blurs (...)
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  • Discussion: Screening-Off and Visibility to Selection. [REVIEW]Christopher Read Hitchcock - 1997 - Biology and Philosophy 12 (4):521-529.
  • Philosophical Foundations for the Hierarchy of Life.Deborah E. Shelton & Richard E. Michod - 2010 - Biology and Philosophy 25 (3):391-403.
    We review Evolution and the Levels of Selection by Samir Okasha. This important book provides a cohesive philosophical framework for understanding levels-of-selections problems in biology. Concerning evolutionary transitions, Okasha proposes that three stages characterize the shift from a lower level of selection to a higher one. We discuss the application of Okasha’s three-stage concept to the evolutionary transition from unicellularity to multicellularity in the volvocine green algae. Okasha’s concepts are a provocative step towards a more general understanding of the major (...)
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  • The Units of Selection Revisited: The Modules of Selection. [REVIEW]Robert N. Brandon - 1999 - Biology and Philosophy 14 (2):167-180.
    Richard Lewontin's (1970) early work on the units of selection initiated the conceptual and theoretical investigations that have led to the hierarchical perspective on selection that has reached near consensus status today. This paper explores other aspects of his work, work on what he termed continuity and quasi-independence, that connect to contemporary explorations of modularity in development and evolution. I characterize such modules and argue that they are the true units of selection in that they are what evolution by natural (...)
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  • The Professionalization of Science Studies: Cutting Some Slack. [REVIEW]David L. Hull - 2000 - Biology and Philosophy 15 (1):61-91.
    During the past hundred years or so, those scholars studying science have isolated themselves as much as possible from scientists as well as from workers in other disciplines who study science. The result of this effort is history of science, philosophy of science and sociology of science as separate disciplines. I argue in this paper that now is the time for these disciplinary boundaries to be lowered or at least made more permeable so that a unified discipline of Science Studies (...)
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  • Convergence and Parallelism in Evolution: A Neo-Gouldian Account.Trevor Pearce - 2012 - British Journal for the Philosophy of Science 63 (2):429-448.
    Determining whether a homoplastic trait is the result of convergence or parallelism is central to many of the most important contemporary discussions in biology and philosophy: the relation between evolution and development, the importance of constraints on variation, and the role of contingency in evolution. In this article, I show that two recent attempts to draw a black-or-white distinction between convergence and parallelism fail, albeit for different reasons. Nevertheless, I argue that we should not be afraid of gray areas: a (...)
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