Authors
Devin Gouvêa
University of Chicago
Abstract
Recent philosophical work on biological homology has generally treated its conceptual fragmentation as a problem to be solved by new accounts that either unify disparate approaches to homology or specify sharp constraints on its meaning. I show that several proposed solutions either misunderstand or ignore central features of comparative biological research, despite attempts to capture scientific practice. I conclude that the problem is incorrectly framed and that disagreements about homology may be epistemically fruitful. Empirically tractable debates are more likely to occur among biologists who share theoretical perspectives on homology. Philosophers should consider homology not merely as a generator of inductive generalizations but also as a scaffold for meaningful empirical comparisons.
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References found in this work BETA

The Phenomena of Homology.Paul Edmund Griffiths - 2007 - Biology and Philosophy 22 (5):643-658.
Homology: Integrating Phylogeny and Development.Marc Ereshefsky - 2009 - Biological Theory 4 (3):225-229.

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