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Peter Woodford [4]Peter J. Woodford [2]
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Peter Woodford
Stanford University
  1.  13
    Neo-Darwinists and Neo-Aristotelians: How to Talk About Natural Purpose.Peter Woodford - 2016 - History and Philosophy of the Life Sciences 38 (4).
    This paper examines the points of disagreement between Neo-Darwinian and recent Neo-Aristotelian discussions of the status of purposive language in biology. I discuss recent Neo-Darwinian “evolutionary” treatments and distinguish three ways to deal with the philosophical status of teleological language of purpose: teleological error theory, methodological teleology, and Darwinian teleological realism. I then show how “non-evolutionary” Neo-Aristotelian approaches in the work of Michael Thompson and Philippa Foot differ from these by offering a view of purposiveness grounded in life-cycle patterns, rather (...)
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  2.  57
    Specters of the Nineteenth Century: Charles Taylor and the Problem of Historicism. [REVIEW]Peter Woodford - 2012 - Journal of Religious Ethics 40 (1):171-192.
    This paper identifies and analyzes the problem of historicism in Charles Taylor's work overall, but with particular emphasis on his most recent publication, A Secular Age. I circumscribe the problem of historicism through reference to the nineteenth-century German philosophical tradition in which it developed, in particular in the thought of Wilhelm Dilthey. I then trace the structural similarities between the notions of history to be found in the thought of Taylor and Dilthey and how these structural similarities raise worries associated (...)
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  3.  7
    The Study That Made Rats Jump for Joy, and Then Killed Them.Christine E. Webb, Peter Woodford & Elise Huchard - 2020 - Bioessays 42 (6):2000030.
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  4.  15
    The Evolution of Altruism and its Significance for Environmental Ethics.Peter Woodford - 2017 - Environmental Ethics 39 (4):413-436.
    The significance of scientific research into the evolution of altruism for environmental ethics can be highlighted through an analysis of recent debates over William Hamilton’s theory of inclusive fitness. Recent debates over how to explain altruism have become particularly charged with ideological weight because they are seen to have some consequence for how we understand the human moral project, especially with regard to nonhuman life. By analyzing the place of evolutionary theory in the work of environmental ethicists some conclusions can (...)
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  5.  27
    The Many Meanings of “Cost” and “Benefit:” Biological Altruism, Biological Agency, and the Identification of Social Behaviours.Peter J. Woodford - 2019 - Biology and Philosophy 34 (1):4.
    The puzzle of how altruism can evolve has been at the center of recent debates over Hamilton’s Rule, inclusive fitness, and kin-selection. In this paper, I use recent debates over altruism and Hamilton’s legacy as an example to illustrate a more general problem in evolutionary theory that has philosophical significance; I attempt to explain this significance and to draw a variety of conclusions about it. The problem is that specific behaviours and general concepts of organism agency and intentionality are defined (...)
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  6. The Moral Meaning of Nature: Nietzsche’s Darwinian Religion and its Critics.Peter J. Woodford - 2019 - University of Chicago Press.
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