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Concepts and Methods in Evolutionary Biology (Cambridge Studies in Philosophy & Biology) (Cambridge Studies in Philosophy and Biology)

Concepts and Methods in Evolutionary Biology (Cambridge Studies in Philosophy & Biology) (Cambridge Studies in Philosophy and Biology)

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Robert N. Brandon
Cambridge University Press, 3/7/1996
EAN 9780521495455, ISBN10: 0521495458

Hardcover, 240 pages, 23.5 x 15.9 x 2 cm
Language: English

Robert Brandon is one of the most important and influential of contemporary philosophers of biology. This collection of his recent essays covers all the traditional topics in the philosophy of evolutionary biology and as such could serve as an introduction to the field. There are essays on the nature of fitness, teleology, the structure of the theory of natural selection, and the levels of selection. The book also deals with newer topics that are less frequently discussed but are of growing interest, for example the evolution of human language and the role of experimentation in evolutionary biology. A special feature of the collection is that it avoids jargon and is written in a style that will appeal to working evolutionary biologists as well as philosophers.

Introduction
Part I
1. Adaptation and evolutionary theory
2. Biological teleology
questions and explanations
3. A structural description of evolutionary theory
4. The levels of selection
Part II
5. Phenotypic plasticity, cultural transmission and human sociobiology
6. From icons to symbols
some speculations on the origins of language
7. Individuality, pluralism, and the phylogenetic species concept
8. The levels of selection
a hierarchy of interactors
Part III
9. Theory and experiment in evolutionary biology
10. The co-evolution of organism and environment
11. Reductionism versus holism versus mechanism
References
Index.