Biological Theory 7 (4):380-389 (2013)

I argue that Darwinian evolutionary theory has a rhetorical dimension and that rhetorical criticism plays a role in how evolutionary science acquires knowledge. I define what I mean by rhetoric by considering Darwin’s Origin. I use the Modern Evolutionary Synthesis to show how rhetoric conceived as situated and addressed argumentation enters into evolutionary theorizing. Finally, I argue that rhetorical criticism helps judge the success, limits, and failures of these theories
Keywords Richard Dawkins  Charles Darwin  Theodosius Dobzhansky  Ernst Mayr  Metaphor  Models  Modern Evolutionary Synthesis  Population genetics  Rhetoric  Richard Whately
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DOI 10.1007/s13752-012-0054-2
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Thinking About Mechanisms.Peter Machamer, Lindley Darden & Carl F. Craver - 2000 - Philosophy of Science 67 (1):1-25.
On the Origin of Species.Charles Darwin - 2008 - Oxford University Press.
The Uses of Argument.Stephen E. Toulmin - 1958 - Cambridge University Press.

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