Biological_Evolution - Alles Introductory Biology:...

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Alles Introductory Biology: Illustrated Lecture Presentations Instructor David L. Alles Western Washington University ----------------------- Part Two: The Conceptual Framework of Biology Biological Evolution -----------------------
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Cosmological Evolution Biological Evolution Modern Biology Biological Anthropology Personal Identity Increasingly Inclusive Concepts in Science Biological evolution is more inclusive than modern biology because it includes a large part of modern geology. The history of life on Earth and the geological history of the Earth are intimately tied together.
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Charles Darwin in 1854 “There is grandeur in this view of life, with its several powers, having been originally breathed into a few forms or into one; and that, whilst this planet has gone cycling on according to the fixed law of gravity, from so simple a beginning endless forms most beautiful and most wonderful have been, and are being evolved.” This quote is the last line from the book On the Origin of Species by Means of Natural Selection, or the Preservation of Favored Races in the Struggle for Life written by Charles Darwin and published in 1859.
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Charles Darwin in 1878 “Never in the field of scientific endeavor can so great a theory [evolution by natural selection] have been misunderstood by so many with so little reason.” (Gould 1977: Ridley 1995)
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Darwin’s Five Theories (after Ernst Mayr 1982, 505) 1) Evolution as Historical Fact—the mutability of species or evolution as such. 2) Common Descent—all organisms have descended from common ancestors by a continuous process of branching speciation. 3) Gradualism—the mode of evolutionary change is gradual—gradual changes within a population as opposed to sudden changes between generations. 4) Speciation—the process of multiplication of species. 5) Natural Selection—the mechanism of evolutionary change. Point : Evolutionary theory is not just one scientific theory and involves much more than what most people think.
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Questions How did the species of plants and animals we see today originate? Have each of these life-forms remained the same since they originated? Has the number and types of species remained the same through time?
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Columbia Mammoths on the Great Plains of North America 11,000 y.a. The story of the mammoths provides a case study by which we can answer the last two questions. The answer to the first question had to wait for Charles Darwin. An average Columbian mammoth stood over 12 feet tall at the shoulder and weighed over 10,000 pounds. Painting by Karen Carr http://prehistoricsillustrated.com/paleogallery_karencarr.html
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The first complete skeleton of a mammoth to be displayed to the public, called the Adams mammoth and now identified as a wooly mammoth, was mounted for display in St. Petersburg in 1808. Over 16 ft long and 10 ft tall, with curving tusks 10 ft long, it was a male which had died at about the age of 45 years. Samples of its skin and hair were sent to many European and
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Biological_Evolution - Alles Introductory Biology:...

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