Cambridge Scholars Press (2011)

"Advocates of the evolutionary analogy claim that mechanisms governing scientific change are analogous to those at work in organic evolution - above all, natural selection. By referring to the works of the most influential proponents of evolutionary analogies (Toulmin, Campbell, Hull and, most notably, Kuhn) the authors discuss whether and to what extent their use of the analogy is appropriate. A careful and often illuminating perusal of the theoretical scope of the terms employed, as well as of the varying contexts within which the analogy is appealed to in contemporary debates, leads to the conclusion that such general theories of selective processes are either too sketchy or eventually not persuasive, if not altogether based on flawed views of evolutionary biology. By clarifying what is at stake, the analysis carried out in the book sheds new light on one of the dominant theories of scientific progress. It also invites criticism, of course - but that is the very fuel of philosophical confrontation." - Stefano Gattei, IMT Institute for Advanced Studies, Lucca "This book presents a serious challenge to those, like David Hull, who seek to model scientific change as an evolutionary process. The authors point out that although there are similarities between the processes of scientific change and organic evolution, the dissimilarities present formidable difficulties to construing the relation as anything more than a weak analogy. Their argument employs what they call a 'type hierarchical' approach that promises to be a powerful tool for the classification of similarities between theories in all fields." - Michael Bradie, Department of Philosophy, Bowling Green State University "This is a most interesting discussion of the analogy between biological and scientific change. Particularly commendable is the close attention paid to the thinking of the late David Hull and his pathbreaking work on this issue." - Michael Ruse, History and Philosophy of Science, Florida State University
Keywords Science Philosophy  Science History  Philosophy History
Categories (categorize this paper)
Buy this book $52.57 new (11% off)   Amazon page
Call number Q175.R3933236 2011
ISBN(s) 9781443833547   1443833541
Edit this record
Mark as duplicate
Export citation
Find it on Scholar
Request removal from index
Revision history

Download options

PhilArchive copy

Upload a copy of this paper     Check publisher's policy     Papers currently archived: 70,091
External links

Setup an account with your affiliations in order to access resources via your University's proxy server
Configure custom proxy (use this if your affiliation does not provide a proxy)
Through your library

References found in this work BETA

No references found.

Add more references

Citations of this work BETA

Moving Past the Systematics Wars.Beckett Sterner & Scott Lidgard - 2018 - Journal of the History of Biology 51 (1):31-67.
Evolutionary Epistemology.Michael Bradie - 2008 - Stanford Encyclopedia of Philosophy.
N. R. Hanson and von Uexküll: A Biosemiotic and Evolutionary Account of Theories.C. David Suárez Pascal - 2021 - Journal for General Philosophy of Science / Zeitschrift für Allgemeine Wissenschaftstheorie 52 (2):247-261.

View all 7 citations / Add more citations

Similar books and articles

Science and Selection.Kim Sterelny - 1994 - Biology and Philosophy 9 (1):45-62.
Evolutionary Change and Epistemology.Trevor Hussey - 1999 - Biology and Philosophy 14 (4):561-584.
Bioethics and History.Robert Baker - 2002 - Journal of Medicine and Philosophy 27 (4):447 – 474.
Understanding Scientific Study Via Process Modeling.Robert W. P. Luk - 2010 - Foundations of Science 15 (1):49-78.
Evolution and Continuity in Scientific Change.Dudley Shapere - 1989 - Philosophy of Science 56 (3):419-437.
Phylogenetic Analogies in the Conceptual Development of Science.Brent D. Mishler - 1990 - PSA: Proceedings of the Biennial Meeting of the Philosophy of Science Association 1990:225-235.
Barriers and Models: Comments on Margolis and Giere.Nancy J. Nersessian - 1990 - PSA: Proceedings of the Biennial Meeting of the Philosophy of Science Association 1990:441 - 444.


Added to PP index

Total views
3 ( #1,357,660 of 2,506,374 )

Recent downloads (6 months)
2 ( #277,420 of 2,506,374 )

How can I increase my downloads?


My notes