Pluralism and Panselectionism

During the 1950s and 60s, evolutionary biologists began to attribute a greater and greater role to natural selection, and correspondingly less and less a role to alternative evolutionary agents. Empirical grounds cited in support of the change in attitude consisted primarily of selectionist reinterpretations of evolutionary changes originally attributed to other evolutionary agents. In order to distinguish the respects in which the increased emphasis on natural selection was justified and unjustified, two distinctions are relied on. These are, first, the distinction between pursuing an hypothesis and accepting it, and second, the distinction between what is reasonable/rational as far as individual scientists are concerned vs. what is reasonable/rational as far as the scientific community is concerned. It was rational for at least some individual scientists to pursue exclusively selectionist accounts on the basis of the selectionist successes in question, although it was not rational for any of them to accept the hypothesis of the all-importance of natural selection on those meager grounds. Moreover, although it was reasonable for at least some individual evolutionary biologists to invoke the selectionist successes in question in pursuit of further selectionist accounts, it was not reasonable for the entire community of evolutionary biologists to pursue exclusively selectionist accounts on those grounds.
Keywords No keywords specified (fix it)
Categories (categorize this paper)
 Save to my reading list
Follow the author(s)
My bibliography
Export citation
Find it on Scholar
Edit this record
Mark as duplicate
Revision history
Request removal from index
Download options
Our Archive

Upload a copy of this paper     Check publisher's policy     Papers currently archived: 25,662
External links

Setup an account with your affiliations in order to access resources via your University's proxy server
Configure custom proxy (use this if your affiliation does not provide a proxy)
Through your library
References found in this work BETA

No references found.

Add more references

Citations of this work BETA

Add more citations

Similar books and articles
Evolutionary Social Science Beyond Culture.Harold Kincaid - 2006 - Behavioral and Brain Sciences 29 (4):356-356.
Selectionist Approaches in Evolutionary Linguistics: An Epistemological Analysis.Nathalie Gontier - 2012 - International Studies in the Philosophy of Science 26 (1):67 - 95.
Truth, Selection and Scientific Inquiry.Stephen M. Downes - 2000 - Biology and Philosophy 15 (3):425-442.
Natural Selection and the Limited Nature of Environmental Resources.Bence Nanay - 2010 - Studies in History and Philosophy of Biological and Biomedical Sciences 41 (4):418-419.
Evolution Might Select Constructivism.James Hurford, Sam Joseph, Simon Kirby & Alastair Reid - 1997 - Behavioral and Brain Sciences 20 (4):567-568.
Beyond Darwinism's Eclipse: Functional Evolution, Biochemical Recapitulation and Spencerian Emergence in the 1920s and 1930s. [REVIEW]Rony Armon - 2010 - Journal for General Philosophy of Science / Zeitschrift für Allgemeine Wissenschaftstheorie 41 (1):173 - 194.
Chance and Natural Selection.John Beatty - 1984 - Philosophy of Science 51 (2):183-211.
The Propensity Interpretation of Fitness.Susan K. Mills & John H. Beatty - 1979 - Philosophy of Science 46 (2):263-286.

Monthly downloads

Added to index


Total downloads

12 ( #362,667 of 2,143,796 )

Recent downloads (6 months)

1 ( #387,161 of 2,143,796 )

How can I increase my downloads?

My notes
Sign in to use this feature

There  are no threads in this forum
Nothing in this forum yet.

Other forums