Trees of History in Systematics, Historical Linguistics, and Stemmatics: A Working Interdisciplinary Bibliography

SSRN Electronic Journal 2540351 (2006)
Robert J. O'Hara
Harvard University (PhD)
138 titles across a wide range of scholarly publications illustrate the conceptual affinities that connect the palaetiological sciences of biological systematics, historical linguistics, and stemmatics. These three fields all have as their central objective the reconstruction of evolutionary "trees of history" that depict phylogenetic patterns of descent with modification among species, languages, and manuscripts. All three fields flourished in the nineteenth century, underwent parallel periods of quiescence in the early twentieth century, and in recent decades have seen widespread parallel revivals. "Tree thinking" (O'Hara, 1988) is now standard within evolutionary biology, and the unity of what William Whewell called palaetiology is being once again appreciated by scholars and scientists in many fields.
Keywords evolution  genealogy  historical linguistics  historical sciences  palaetiology  phylogeny  stemmatics  systematics  textual transmission  tree-thinking
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