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Philosophy of Science

Philosophy of science

Robert J. O’Hara

Publication Year

Articles 1 - 2 of 2

Full-Text Articles in Philosophy

Population Thinking And Tree Thinking In Systematics, Robert O’Hara Dec 1996

Population Thinking And Tree Thinking In Systematics, Robert O’Hara

Robert J. O’Hara

Two new modes of thinking have spread through systematics in the twentieth century. Both have deep historical roots, but they have been widely accepted only during this century. Population thinking overtook the field in the early part of the century, culminating in the full development of population systematics in the 1930s and 1940s, and the subsequent growth of the entire field of population biology. Population thinking rejects the idea that each species has a natural type (as the earlier essentialist view had assumed), and instead sees every species as a varying population of interbreeding individuals. Tree thinking has spread through ...


Trees Of History In Systematics And Philology, Robert O’Hara Dec 1995

Trees Of History In Systematics And Philology, Robert O’Hara

Robert J. O’Hara

«The Natural System» is the name given to the underlying arrangement present in the diversity of life. Unlike a classification, which is made up of classes and members, a system or arrangement is an integrated whole made up of connected parts. In the pre-evolutionary period a variety of forms were proposed for the Natural System, including maps, circles, stars, and abstract multidimensional objects. The trees sketched by Darwin in the 1830s should probably be considered the first genuine evolutionary diagrams of the Natural System—the first genuine evolutionary trees. Darwin refined his image of the Natural System in the well-known ...