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Natural Selection, Causality, and Laws: What Fodor and Piatelli-Palmarini Got Wrong*

Elliott Sober
Philosophy of Science
Vol. 77, No. 4 (October 2010), pp. 594-607
DOI: 10.1086/656020
Stable URL: http://www.jstor.org/stable/10.1086/656020
Page Count: 14
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Natural Selection, Causality, and Laws: What Fodor
and Piatelli-Palmarini Got Wrong*
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Abstract

In their book What Darwin Got Wrong, Jerry Fodor and Massimo Piattelli-Palmarini construct an a priori philosophical argument and an empirical biological argument. The biological argument aims to show that natural selection is much less important in the evolutionary process than many biologists maintain. The a priori argument begins with the claim that there cannot be selection for one but not the other of two traits that are perfectly correlated in a population; it concludes that there cannot be an evolutionary theory of adaptation. This article focuses mainly on the a priori argument.

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