Darwin’s Other Mistake

Michael R. Rose and Theodore Garland, Jr.

in Experimental Evolution

Published by University of California Press

Published in print March 2009 | ISBN: 9780520247666
Published online March 2012 | e-ISBN: 9780520944473 | DOI:
Darwin’s Other Mistake

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Darwin's erroneous reasoning concerning heredity was influenced by his gradualist prejudices. This style of thinking prevented Darwin from giving appropriate attention to the hypothesis of discrete inheritance, leading evolutionary biology up a blind alley of blending inheritance. Darwin's other mistake also came from his gradualist preconceptions. Darwin repeatedly emphasized that natural selection acts only by slow accretion and is slow, which implies that natural selection is difficult to observe. This book emphasizes that the Darwinian inhibition about experimental research on evolution should now be resolutely discarded. Its goal is to foster selection experiments and experimental evolution as a central component of evolutionary biology.

Keywords: heredity; discrete inheritance; evolutionary biology; natural selection; selection experiments; experimental evolution

Chapter.  4748 words. 

Subjects: Evolutionary Biology

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