From survivors to replicators: evolution by natural selection revisited

Biology and Philosophy 29 (4):517-538 (2014)

Authors
Pierrick Bourrat
Macquarie University
Abstract
For evolution by natural selection to occur it is classically admitted that the three ingredients of variation, difference in fitness and heredity are necessary and sufficient. In this paper, I show using simple individual-based models, that evolution by natural selection can occur in populations of entities in which neither heredity nor reproduction are present. Furthermore, I demonstrate by complexifying these models that both reproduction and heredity are predictable Darwinian products (i.e. complex adaptations) of populations initially lacking these two properties but in which new variation is introduced via mutations. Later on, I show that replicators are not necessary for evolution by natural selection, but rather the ultimate product of such processes of adaptation. Finally, I assess the value of these models in three relevant domains for Darwinian evolution
Keywords Evolution by natural selection  Replicator  Fitness  Individual-based models  Natural selection  Diachronic
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Reprint years 2014
DOI 10.1007/s10539-013-9383-1
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References found in this work BETA

Darwin's Dangerous Idea: Evolution and the Meanings of Life.Daniel C. Dennett & Jon Hodge - 1995 - British Journal for the Philosophy of Science 48 (3):435-438.
Evolution and the Levels of Selection.Samir Okasha - 2009 - Critica 41 (123):162-170.
Evolution and the Levels of Selection.Samir Okasha - 2006 - Oxford University Press.

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Citations of this work BETA

In What Sense Can There Be Evolution by Natural Selection Without Perfect Inheritance?Pierrick Bourrat - 2019 - International Studies in the Philosophy of Science 32 (1):13-31.
How to Read ‘Heritability’ in the Recipe Approach to Natural Selection.Pierrick Bourrat - 2015 - British Journal for the Philosophy of Science 66 (4):883-903.
Multispecies individuals.Pierrick Bourrat & Paul E. Griffiths - 2018 - History and Philosophy of the Life Sciences 40 (2):33.
Levels, Time and Fitness in Evolutionary Transitions in Individuality.Pierrick Bourrat - 2015 - Philosophy, Theory, and Practice in Biology 7 (20150505).

View all 6 citations / Add more citations

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