The Evolution of Adaptive Systems: The General Theory of Evolution

9780123885654: The Evolution of Adaptive Systems: The General Theory of Evolution

The data of evolutionary biology have changed in a very radical way in recent years, the most significant input to this revolution being the advances made in developmental genetics. Another recent development is a noticeable shift away from extreme specialization in evolutionary biology. In this, we are perhaps to be reminded of George Gaylord Simpson's comments: "evolution is an incredibly complex but at the same time integrated and unitary process". The main objective of this book is to illustrate how natural adaptive systems evolve as a unity-with the particular objective of identifying and merging several special theories of evolution within the framework of a single general theory. The book provides an interdisciplinary overview of the general theory of evolution from the standpoint of the dynamic behavior of natural adaptive systems. The approach leads to a radically new fusion of the diverse disciplines of evolutionary biology, serving to resolve the considerable degree of conflict existing between different schools of contemporary thought.

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From the Back Cover:

The Evolution of Adaptive Systems is the first to radically rework the theory of evolution. Rather than merely amplifying the original Darwinian evolutionary model, it encompasses it within a more dynamic concept - effectively merging the Darwinian theory with that other school of evolutionary thought, structuralism. By placing the theory of evolution within this framework, it resolves the conflict between the Neo-Darwinian school that evolution occurs through selection of random mutations, and the structuralist view that evolution occurs by unfolding of genetic patterns via a process of self organization. By doing so, it integrates classical and contemporary genetics within the context of adaptive systems theory.

Key Features

  • Integrates the conflicting Darwinian and "structuralist" theories of evolution into a single unified theory
  • Distinguishes clearly between the operation of selection - in the context of ongoing adaptive equilibrium - as against true evolutionary change
  • Synthesizes the dichotomy shown to exist between fabricational and adaptive paradigms of development
  • Discusses the divergent views of how speciation is linked to patterns of major evolutionary change
  • Presents a fresh critical analysis of the methodology of phylogeny reconstruction

About the Author:

Dr. James P. Brock is presently Keeper of Natural History at the Horniman Museum in London. A Fellow of both the Linnean Society of London and the Zoological Society of London, he developed his primary research interest, evolutionary theory, with a Ph.D. from Imperial College, after earlier posts working at the University Museums of Glasgow and Oxford where he explored related interests in insect taxonomy before expanding into the theory and practice of phylogenetics. Dr. Brock has published a number of seminal papers and book contributions, and continues to pursue long term interests in evolutionary theory - evolution in higher groups in Lepidoptera Ditrysia, and taxonomy of parasitic wasps, among others.

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James P. Brock
Published by Academic Press
ISBN 10: 0123885655 ISBN 13: 9780123885654
New Paperback Quantity Available: 1
Revaluation Books
(Exeter, United Kingdom)

Book Description Academic Press. Paperback. Book Condition: Brand New. 660 pages. 9.90x8.27x1.49 inches. In Stock. Bookseller Inventory # zk0123885655

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