Mishler2_History - Bio 1B Lecture Outline(please print and...

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Evolution #2, pg. 1 Bio 1B Lecture Outline (please print and bring along) Fall, 2007 B.D. Mishler, Dept. of Integrative Biology 2-6810, [email protected] Evolution Lecture #2 -- History of Evolution -- Nov. 5, 2007 A. Prelude: the wonders of adaptation; fit of organisms to environment. What was it that stimulated people to think about biodiversity in sheer wonder? B. Introduction. As we discussed last time, the ideas relating to evolution of species and the tree of life are among the most profound ideas the human species has been able to generate over its history. It has taken a lot of time, and false starts, to get to where we are today. It is important to look at the background of the pre-evolutionary worldview, to understand the context in which Darwin and others worked. It is also important to think hard about the philosophical background. Important criteria to think about in looking at this history: Relative balance in importance of theory vs. data -- rationalism vs empiricism The role of technology Metaphors that people use to conceptualize the world (geometric shapes, maps, trees) The nature and importance of variation C. The ancient Greeks through Linnaeus - Essentialism Aristotelian / Platonic tradition o ideals, essential reality to entities in nature o
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