The Species Problem: A Philosophical Analysis
There is long-standing disagreement among systematists about how to divide biodiversity into species. Over twenty different species concepts are used to group organisms, according to criteria as diverse as morphological or molecular similarity, interbreeding and genealogical relationships. This, combined with the implications of evolutionary biology, raises the worry that either there is no single kind of species, or that species are not real. This book surveys the history of thinking about species from Aristotle to modern systematics in order to understand the origin of the problem, and advocates a solution based on the idea of the division of conceptual labor, whereby species concepts function in different ways - theoretically and operationally. It also considers related topics such as individuality and the metaphysics of evolution, and how scientific terms get their meaning. This important addition to the current debate will be essential for philosophers and historians of science, and for biologists.
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2 The transformation of Aristotle
3 Linnaeus and the naturalists
4 Darwin and the proliferation of species concepts
5 The division of conceptual labor solution
6 Species and the metaphysics of evolution
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animals apply approach argued Aristotle Aristotle’s basis biodiversity biological species concept biologists Boethius Buffon chapter cies cladistic classification cohesion conceiving species conception of species conceptual labor consilience criteria criterion Darwin definitional core definitional structure descriptive periphery different species distinct division of conceptual Dobzhansky eidos Elliott Sober enmattered form entities Ereshefsky Ernst Mayr essences essential properties Essentialism Story essentialist evolution evolutionary theory framework function genealogical genera genetic genos genus Ghiselin groups of organisms hierarchical historical idea identified individual organisms instance interbreeding kinds of species linguistic Linnaeus logical Mayden Mayr metaphysical monophyly morphological natural kinds natural selection naturalists operational concepts particular philosophers Plato pluralism population lineages potential processes Queiroz relevant seems sense sexual significance similarity speciation species category species groupings species problem species taxa species things species-as-individuals Stamos systematists taxon term species theoretical concepts thinking about species tion traits Twin Earth understanding universal views