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Is the Evolutionary Process Deterministic or Indeterministic? An Argument for Agnosticism

Millstein, Roberta L. (2000) Is the Evolutionary Process Deterministic or Indeterministic? An Argument for Agnosticism. UNSPECIFIED.

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    Abstract

    Recently, philosophers of biology have debated the status of the evolutionary process: is it deterministic or indeterministic? I argue that there is insufficient reason to favor one side of the debate over the other, and that a more philosophically defensible position argues neither for the determinacy nor for the indeterminacy of the evolutionary process. In other words, I maintain that the appropriate stand to take towards the question of the determinism of the evolutionary process is agnosticism. I then suggest that an examination of the phenomenon of developmental noise might yield a solution to the problem.


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    Item Type: Other
    Additional Information: Presented at the Biennial Meeting of the Philosophy of Science Association Vancouver, Canada, November 2000
    Keywords: determinism, indeterminism, evolution, probability
    Subjects: Specific Sciences > Biology > Evolutionary Theory
    General Issues > Determinism/Indeterminism
    Depositing User: Dr. Roberta L. Millstein
    Date Deposited: 01 Apr 2009
    Last Modified: 07 Oct 2010 11:17
    Item ID: 4544
    URI: http://philsci-archive.pitt.edu/id/eprint/4544

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