Biology and Philosophy 33 (5-6):32 (2018)

Authors
Leonard Finkelman
Linfield College
Abstract
Developments in genetic engineering may soon allow biologists to clone organisms from extinct species. The process, dubbed “de-extinction,” has been publicized as a means to bring extinct species back to life. For theorists and philosophers of biology, the process also suggests a thought experiment for the ongoing “species problem”: given a species concept, would a clone be classified in the extinct species? Previous analyses have answered this question in the context of specific de-extinction technologies or particular species concepts. The thought experiment is given more comprehensive treatment here. Given the products of three de-extinction technologies, twenty-two species concepts are “tested” to see which are consistent with the idea that species may be resurrected. The ensuing discussion considers whether or not de-extinction is a conceptually coherent research program and, if so, whether or not its development may contribute to a resolution of the species problem. Ultimately, theorists must face a choice: they may revise their commitments to species concepts or they may recognize de-extinction as a means to make progress in the species problem.
Keywords Species  Biology  Extinction
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Reprint years 2018
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DOI 10.1007/s10539-018-9639-x
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References found in this work BETA

Animal Species and Evolution.Ernst Mayr - 1963 - Belknap of Harvard University Press.

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