Integrating Evolution and Development: From Theory to Practice

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Roger Sansom, Robert N. Brandon
MIT Press, 2007 - Science - 334 pages
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The twentieth century's conceptual separation of the process of evolution (changes ina population as its members reproduce and die) from the process of development (changes in anorganism over the course of its life) allowed scientists to study evolution without bogging down inthe "messy details" of development. Advances in genetics produced the modern synthesis,which cast the gene as the unit of natural selection. The modern synthesis, however, has had itsdissenters (among them Stephen Jay Gould), and there is now growing interest in the developmentalsynthesis (also known as evo-devo), which integrates the study of evolution and development. Thiscollection offers a history of the developmental synthesis, argues for its significance, andprovides specific case studies of its applications ranging from evolutionary psychology to theevolution of culture. Widespread interest in the developmental synthesis is a relatively newphenomenon. Scientists don't yet know whether revisions to evolutionary theory resulting from thefindings of evo-devo will be modest, with the developmental synthesis seen as a supplement toevolutionary theory, or a more far-reaching fundamental theoretical rethinking of evolution itself.The chapters in Integrating Evolution and Development not only make a case for the importance of thedevelopmental synthesis, they also make significant contributions to this fast-growing field ofstudy. ContributorsWerner Callebaut, James R. Griesemer, Paul E. Griffiths, Manfred D. Laubichler,Jane Maienschein, Gerd B. Müller, Stuart A. Newman, H. Frederik Nijhout, Roger Sansom, GerhardSchlosser, William C. WimsattRoger Sansom is Assistant Professor of Philosophy at Texas A&MUniversity. Robert Brandon is Professor of Philosophy and Biology at Duke University and thecoeditor of Genes, Organisms, Populations: Controversies over the Units of Selection (MIT Press,1984).

 

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Contents

Reflections on the History of Evolutionary Developmental Biology
1
EvoDevo and the Streamlining of the Naturalistic Agenda
25
Genetics Development and Evolution
93
An Attempt on the Architecture of Constraints
113
5 Legacies of Adaptive Development
173
Toward a Developmental Evolutionary Psychology
195
The Central Role of Development in Cultural Evolution
227
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About the author (2007)

Robert Brandon is Professor of Philosophy and Biology at Duke University and the coeditor of Genes, Organisms, Populations: Controversies over the Units of Selection (MIT Press, 1984).

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