What fitness can't be

Erkenntnis 71 (3):289 - 301 (2009)
Abstract
Recently advocates of the propensity interpretation of fitness have turned critics. To accommodate examples from the population genetics literature they conclude that fitness is better defined broadly as a family of propensities rather than the propensity to contribute descendants to some future generation. We argue that the propensity theorists have misunderstood the deeper ramifications of the examples they cite. These examples demonstrate why there are factors outside of propensities that determine fitness. We go on to argue for the more general thesis that no account of fitness can satisfy the desiderata that have motivated the propensity account.
Keywords Philosophy   Logic   Ethics   Ontology   Epistemology   Philosophy
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DOI 10.1007/s10670-009-9183-9
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References found in this work BETA
Natural Selection as a Population-Level Causal Process.Roberta L. Millstein - 2006 - British Journal for the Philosophy of Science 57 (4):627-653.
Fitness, Probability and the Principles of Natural Selection.Frédéric Bouchard & Alex Rosenberg - 2004 - British Journal for the Philosophy of Science 55 (4):693-712.

View all 8 references / Add more references

Citations of this work BETA
A New Foundation for the Propensity Interpretation of Fitness.Charles H. Pence & Grant Ramsey - 2013 - British Journal for the Philosophy of Science 64 (4):851-881.
Driftability.Grant Ramsey - 2013 - Synthese 190 (17):3909-3928.
The Early History of Chance in Evolution.Charles H. Pence - 2015 - Studies in History and Philosophy of Science Part A 50:48-58.

View all 6 citations / Add more citations

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2009-01-28

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