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Toward a New Philosophy of Biology: Observations of an Evolutionist

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This is a beautifully presented collection of twenty-eight articles and essays, elegantly introduced and filled with important neologisms all contributing to clarity.
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Editorial Reviews

Library Journal
$35. biology Mayr, one of the principal architects of the modern evolutionary synthesis, has been a protagonist and astute observer in evolutionary discussions for over 50 years. This series of essays is organized topically under such headings as natural selection, adaptation, Darwin and Darwinism, taxonomic diversity, speciation, macroevolution, and philosophy of science as it is affected by evolutionary thought. The book's organization is reminiscent of similar compilations by Stephen Jay Gould (e.g., The Flamingo's Smile , LJ 9/15/86), but most of these essays require more sophistication from the reader. The book is vintage Mayrshowing him, as ever, a cogent, critical, and remarkably well-read biologist, historian, and philosopher. For informed readers and scholars. Margery C. Coombs, Univ. of Massachusetts, Amherst
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780674896659
  • Publisher: Harvard University Press
  • Publication date: 1/1/1988
  • Pages: 640

Meet the Author

Ernst Mayr is Alexander Agassiz Professor of Zoology, Emeritus, at Harvard University. He is also the recipient of numerous honorary degrees and awards, including the Crafoord Prize for Biology, the National Medal of Science, the Balzan Prize, and the Japan Prize.

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Table of Contents

I. Philosophy


1. Is Biology an Autonomous Science?

2. Cause and Effect in Biology

3. The Multiple Meanings of Teleological

4. The Probability of Extraterrestrial Intelligent Life

5. The Origins of Human Ethics

II. Natural Selection


6. An Analysis of the Concept of Natural Selection

7. Philosophical Aspects of Natural Selection

III. Adaptation


8. Adaptation and Selection

9. How To Carry Out the Adaptationist Program?

IV. Darwin


10. Darwin, Intellectual Revolutionary

11. The Challenge of Darwinism

12. What Is Darwinism

13. Darwin and Natural Selection

14. The Concept of Finality in Darwin and alter Darwin

15. The Death of Darwin

V. Diversity


16. Toward a Synthesis in Biological Classification

17. Museums and Biological Laboratories

18. Problems in the Classification of Birds

VI. Species


19. The Species Category

20. The Ontology of the Species Taxon

VII. Speciation


21. Processes of Speciation in Animals

22. Evolution of Fish Species Flocks

VIII. Macro Evolution


23. Does Microevolution Explain Macroevolution?

24. The Unity of the Genotype

25. Speciation and Macroevolution

26. Speciational Evolution through Punctuated Equilibria

IX. Historical Perspective


27. On Weismann's Growth as an Evolutionist

28. Onthe Evolutionary Synthesis and After


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