Darwin-L Message Log 21: 1–18 — May 1995
Academic Discussion on the History and Theory of the Historical Sciences
Darwin-L was an international discussion group on the history and theory of the historical sciences, active from 1993–1997. Darwin-L was established to promote the reintegration of a range of fields all of which are concerned with reconstructing the past from evidence in the present, and to encourage communication among scholars, scientists, and researchers in these fields. The group had more than 600 members from 35 countries, and produced a consistently high level of discussion over its several years of operation. Darwin-L was not restricted to evolutionary biology nor to the work of Charles Darwin, but instead addressed the entire range of historical sciences from an explicitly comparative perspective, including evolutionary biology, historical linguistics, textual transmission and stemmatics, historical geology, systematics and phylogeny, archeology, paleontology, cosmology, historical geography, historical anthropology, and related “palaetiological” fields.
This log contains public messages posted to the Darwin-L discussion group during May 1995. It has been lightly edited for format: message numbers have been added for ease of reference, message headers have been trimmed, some irregular lines have been reformatted, and error messages and personal messages accidentally posted to the group as a whole have been deleted. No genuine editorial changes have been made to the content of any of the posts. This log is provided for personal reference and research purposes only, and none of the material contained herein should be published or quoted without the permission of the original poster.
The master copy of this log is maintained in the Darwin-L Archives (rjohara.net/darwin) by Dr. Robert J. O’Hara. The Darwin-L Archives also contain additional information about the Darwin-L discussion group, the complete Today in the Historical Sciences calendar for every month of the year, a collection of recommended readings on the historical sciences, and an account of William Whewell’s concept of “palaetiology.”
----------------------------------------- DARWIN-L MESSAGE LOG 21: 1-18 -- MAY 1995 ----------------------------------------- DARWIN-L A Network Discussion Group on the History and Theory of the Historical Sciences Darwin-L@ukanaix.cc.ukans.edu is an international network discussion group on the history and theory of the historical sciences. Darwin-L was established in September 1993 to promote the reintegration of a range of fields all of which are concerned with reconstructing the past from evidence in the present, and to encourage communication among academic professionals in these fields. Darwin-L is not restricted to evolutionary biology nor to the work of Charles Darwin but instead addresses the entire range of historical sciences from an interdisciplinary perspective, including evolutionary biology, historical linguistics, textual transmission and stemmatics, historical geology, systematics and phylogeny, archeology, paleontology, cosmology, historical anthropology, historical geography, and related "palaetiological" fields. This log contains the public messages posted to Darwin-L during May 1995. It has been lightly edited for format: message numbers have been added for ease of reference, message headers have been trimmed, some irregular lines have been reformatted, and some administrative messages and personal messages posted to the group as a whole have been deleted. No genuine editorial changes have been made to the content of any of the posts. This log is provided for personal reference and research purposes only, and none of the material contained herein should be published or quoted without the permission of the original poster. The master copy of this log is maintained in the archives of Darwin-L by email@example.com, and is also available on the Darwin-L gopher at rjohara.uncg.edu. For instructions on how to retrieve copies of this and other log files, and for additional information about Darwin-L, send the e-mail message INFO DARWIN-L to firstname.lastname@example.org, or connect to the Darwin-L gopher at rjohara.uncg.edu. Darwin-L is administered by Robert J. O'Hara (email@example.com), Center for Critical Inquiry in the Liberal Arts and Department of Biology, University of North Carolina at Greensboro, Greensboro, North Carolina 27412 U.S.A., and it is supported by the Center for Critical Inquiry, University of North Carolina at Greensboro, and the Department of History and the Academic Computing Center, University of Kansas. _______________________________________________________________________________ <21:1>From DARWIN@iris.uncg.edu Mon May 1 00:04:11 1995 Date: Mon, 01 May 1995 01:04:03 -0400 (EDT) From: DARWIN@iris.uncg.edu Subject: List owner's monthly greeting To: firstname.lastname@example.org Organization: University of NC at Greensboro Greetings to all Darwin-L subscribers. On the first of every month I send out a short note on the status of our group, along with a reminder of basic commands. Darwin-L is an international discussion group for professionals in the historical sciences. It is not devoted to any particular discipline, such as evolutionary biology, but rather endeavors to promote interdisciplinary comparisons among all the historical sciences. Darwin-L was established in September 1993, and we now have over 600 members from more than 30 countries. I am grateful to all of our members for their continuing interest and their many contributions. Darwin-L is occasionally a "high-volume" discussion group. Subscribers who feel burdened from time to time by their Darwin-L mail may wish to take advantage of the digest option described below. Because different mail systems work differently, not all subscribers can see the e-mail address of the original sender of each message in the message header (some people only see "Darwin-L" as the source). Please include your name and e-mail address at the end of every message you post so that everyone can identify you and reply privately if appropriate. Remember also that in most cases when you type "reply" in response to a message from Darwin-L your reply is sent to the group as a whole, rather than to the original sender. The following are the most frequently used listserv commands that Darwin-L members may wish to know. All of these commands should be sent as regular e-mail messages to the listserv address (email@example.com), not to the address of the group as a whole (Darwin-L@ukanaix.cc.ukans.edu). In each case leave the subject line of the message blank and include no extraneous text, as the command will be read and processed by the listserv program rather than by a person. 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For a comprehensive introduction to Darwin-L with notes on our scope and on network etiquette, and a summary of all available commands, send the message: INFO DARWIN-L To post a public message to the group as a whole simply send it as regular e-mail to the group's address (Darwin-L@ukanaix.cc.ukans.edu). I thank you all for your continuing interest in Darwin-L and in the interdisciplinary study of the historical sciences. Bob O'Hara, Darwin-L list owner Robert J. O'Hara (firstname.lastname@example.org) Center for Critical Inquiry and Department of Biology 100 Foust Building, University of North Carolina at Greensboro Greensboro, North Carolina 27412 U.S.A. _______________________________________________________________________________ <21:2>From email@example.com Tue May 2 19:18:10 1995 From: Mary P Winsor <firstname.lastname@example.org> Subject: stuff To: email@example.com (Darin Brunson) Date: Tue, 2 May 1995 20:17:22 -0400 (EDT) Darin, sincere apologies, I meant to answer fully, but still haven't found the time to do that, and what I should have done was at least answer briefly. I meant to send you my "Lessons of History" paper, did I omit to do that too, or did you get it? It has been a while since I've looked at Ridley, but I remember being exasperated at some of the way he talked about Agassiz, as though people 100 years ago needed to be cladists or not, but I recall he had some good reason to take up history, since transformed cladists were pointing to the likes of Agassiz as evidence of independence of taxonomy and phylogeny. I have a few pages in first chapter of my Reading the Shape of Nature, which no reviewer has said a word about - I don't know if anyone thinks it is wrong, or trivial, but I thought it was new and important - showing that Agassiz was a more extreme idealist than people have realized. But I was very sympathetic to Ridley's intentions, I think tc is philosophically naive and scientifically pernicious. but I haven't the philosophical equipment to argue this well. I am working at the moment on Gilmour's "Taxonomy and Philosophy" article in New Systematics. I feel considerably handicapped being only a historian, but I tend to agree with Mayr that his ideas were both wrong and harmful. You saw the Darwin-list posts after yours, with references to the Mayr-"Darwinian" controversy. I checked up Ghiselin's article Syst. Zool. 34 (1985):460-2; he gives some good long quotes that supply a fuller picture of Darwin's opinion. I couldn't quite understand from what you said of Eldredge (you gave no citation) how allopatric vs sympatric speciation was relevant to the Darwin-as-proto-Mayrian debate. Again, sorry for my silence, thanks for nudging me. Polly _______________________________________________________________________________ <21:3>From firstname.lastname@example.org Wed May 3 16:12:13 1995 Date: Wed, 3 May 1995 17:12:07 -0400 (EDT) From: "EILEEN P. CHANDHOKE" <email@example.com> To: Darwin-L@ukanaix.cc.ukans.edu Subject: Darwin and Spinsters? I am a science librarian at George Mason University in Northern Virginia and recently had the following question posed to me for research. I am not a Darwin scholar, but know enough about his works and theories to answer many questions. However, I have not been able to find an answer to this one. The question consists of an ecological argument about the cascade effect of spinsters, cats, bumble bees, red clover and honey. Did this originate from Darwin and if so, where does he make the statement? In the Origin, the relationship between red clover and humble-bees is noted, as is that between cats and field mice and between mice and bumble bees. There is discussion of the importance of bumble bees for the fertilization of red clover (and some doubt, which Darwin evidently rejected) as to whether field mice actually attack bumble bee nests, but nothing more. Also in the Origin, Darwin writes that the honey bee does not fertilize or use the nectar of the red clover. That seems to suggest that the greater prevalence of honey bee honey where spinsters keep their cats would not arise from the presence of red clover. I have found scientific literature on bumble bees and honey bees and the fertilization of red clover. However I cannot figure how the "spinsters" figure in to all this. This research is being done for an author who has used this ecological argument in his paper. He has not been able to find an answer - even after extensive research. I would appreciate any help anyone can give me on this question!! You can respond direct to me at my e-mail address. Thanks in advance! Eileen Chandhoke firstname.lastname@example.org _______________________________________________________________________________ <21:4>From email@example.com Sat May 6 09:08:46 1995 From: Mary P Winsor <firstname.lastname@example.org> Subject: apology from a spinster To: email@example.com (bulletin board) Date: Sat, 6 May 1995 10:08:00 -0400 (EDT) To members of the Darwin List, from Polly Winsor My apologies for sending to you all what was meant to be a private note to Darin Brunson, but since our conversation began on this list, maybe some of you didn't mind listening in. I enjoyed the interdisciplinary exchanges that Bob O'Hara is so skillful at promoting, so maybe I can best make my apology substantial by commenting on today's other posting -no, I can't answer the question, but I hope if the good librarian gets an answer she will share the gist of it with those of us whose curiosity was aroused. She is referring to the attractive and familiar story Darwin uses in chapter 3 of the Origin to remind us of the "complex relations of all plants and animals throughout nature" -most of which we are ignorant of, or forget even if we know them, because you need those relations to explain that Natural Selection can create adaptation not just to climate but to other species, and it was those adaptations (missletoe to the oak tree it grows on, woodpecker's tongue to insect grub in tree) that seemed beyond the power of Lamarck's theory. (And all of this illustrates the revolutionary power of Darwin's methodology, looking at present as key to the past) So who would expect that presence of cats could determine rarity of a flower, yet so it may be! says Darwin. Note another clever step of his argument - all he needs to show is that, as he says, "it is credible" I have with me here the sixth edition, but I don't recall the first being much different. To build the story, he says "Humble-bees alone visit red clover, as other bees cannot reach the nectar" [some British naturalists have a real dislike of the Americanism "bumble-bee] Mice destroy humble-bee combs, and of course the number of cats affect the number of mice. No spinsters for the cats, just "towns". No honey, just the implied irrelevance of honeybees. So the question is, who elaborated the tale? out of the blue I would guess one of the great popularizers, T.H.Huxley, his grandson Julian, or J.B.S. Haldane, but I don't know. I would be glad to be told about "cascade," which I thought was a term for an embryological series of events; it is in ecology too? Polly Winsor firstname.lastname@example.org _______________________________________________________________________________ <21:5>From FGLEACH@MUSIC.TRANSY.EDU Tue May 9 15:30:46 1995 Date: Tue, 09 May 95 16:29:09 EDT From: "GLEACH,FREDERIC W." <FGLEACH@MUSIC.TRANSY.EDU> To: <email@example.com> Subject: "quick" evolution examples? Darwiners: I know it's a bad time of year for many of us, but thought you might be able to help. A colleague of mine posed the following question, and I thought posing it to this list would be the best way to answer it. >I would like to find a reference or two for examples of cases where >evolution (in terms of adaptive metabolism, or something that resembles >it so I can apply it to hypothesize about arsenic) has taken no more than a >few thousand years. Can you think of anything? Responses may be sent to me (FGLEACH@MUSIC.TRANSY.EDU) or to the list--but I need them within the next couple of weeks, as I will then be leaving here. Thanks in advance! Fred Frederic W. Gleach Dept. of Sociology and Anthropology Transylvania University _______________________________________________________________________________ <21:6>From firstname.lastname@example.org Tue May 9 17:22:03 1995 From: Jan Austin <email@example.com> Subject: Re: Simultaneous Discovery, Science To: firstname.lastname@example.org Date: Tue, 9 May 95 14:22:06 PDT > For a lecture welcoming our sophomores into the History and Science > concentration at Harvard, I am interested in collecting examples of > simultaneous discoveries in science (like Darwin-Wallace, the microscope, > etc). You can reach me directly at: email@example.com > Sincerely, > Lisbet Koerner > Assistant Professor > Department of the History of Science > Harvard University Hello, I saw your request on the Darwin-l list and I would be very interested in any listing that you might compile along those lines. I think simultaneous discoveries are most interesting particularly when viewed in terms of social events and technological developments. Any information you would be comfortable sharing would be most appreciated. Thanks, Jan Austin Santa Moncia College _______________________________________________________________________________ <21:7>From firstname.lastname@example.org Thu May 11 07:10:57 1995 Date: Thu, 11 May 95 08:10:54 EDT From: email@example.com (John Staddon) To: firstname.lastname@example.org Subject: Re: Simultaneous Discovery, Science Re: Simultaneous discoveries. A modest example that is interesting because of the number of simultaneous discoverers is the Marginal Value Theorem in behavioral ecology. Rick Charnov is credited with the basic discovery (which is an application of marginal-utility theory from economics to behavioral ecology), but I think that four or five other people also had the idea independently. Mathematical formalisms like this seem often to be discovered independently. I guess the different forms of wave mechanics proposed by de Broglie, Heisenberg and someone else -- but not know to be identical for several years -- is another, famous example. John Staddon _______________________________________________________________________________ <21:8>From LCOOK@fs2.scg.man.ac.uk Thu May 11 08:28:02 1995 From: Laurence Martin Cook <LCOOK@fs2.scg.man.ac.uk> To: email@example.com Date: Thu, 11 May 1995 14:26:40 GMT+1 Subject: Re: short-term evolution Subject: "quick" evolution examples? >I would like to find a reference or two for examples of cases where >evolution (in terms of adaptive metabolism, or something that resembles >it so I can apply it to hypothesize about arsenic) has taken no more than a >few thousand years. Can you think of anything? The case of heavy metal tolerance by plants to spoil tips would seem to fit both the requirement of short duration (few mine deposits are more than 2000 years old) and adaptive metabolism related to aresnic. But what do you mean by evolution? Sewall Wright described the "elementary evolutionary process" as change in gene frequency. On this basis, you have a good example of evolution. If you are looking for species formation, that is something else. Laurence M. Cook The Manchester Museum University of Manchester Manchester M13 9PL _______________________________________________________________________________ <21:9>From firstname.lastname@example.org Thu May 11 08:53:54 1995 To: "GLEACH,FREDERIC W." <FGLEACH@MUSIC.TRANSY.EDU> Cc: Multiple recipients of list <email@example.com> Subject: "quick" evolution examples? -- what phyletic range? Date: Thu, 11 May 95 09:57:50 -0400 From: Joshua Lederberg <firstname.lastname@example.org> <<<<<< >I would like to find a reference or two for examples of cases where >evolution (in terms of adaptive metabolism, or something that resembles >it so I can apply it to hypothesize about arsenic) has taken no more than a >few thousand years. Can you think of anything? >>>>>> Bacteria? Viruses? Before I dig out detailed references, what kinds of organisms will you accept. Model experiments in bacteria, say resistance to streptomycin by modification of ribosome structure -- easily demonstrated overnight in lab. In natural populations, antibiotic resistance becomes a dangerous nuisance in time scales of years to a decade. I am sure I can dig out specific instances of arsenic adaptation as well. For viruses, HIV-resistance to AZT Insects?: Much same as above, insecticide resistance: months to years in lab, years to decades ex vitro. Many examples. Higher plants: pesticide resistance, a few scattered examples likewise. Mammals: Very likely this has been looked for with rodenticides. Rabbits: in Australia, adjustment to myxoma virus infection in years to decades. Humans: Some numbers of metabolic polymorphisms are known, not much in detail about rates of evolutionary change. Canonical example is Hb-S (sickle cell hemoglobin trait), with shifts in gene frequency in response to malarious environments are measured in millenia to tens of millenia. Human "adaptation" to arsenic is depicted in the mythical story of Mithridates. ------- Appended are a couple of sample references: Authors Misenheimer TM. Lund M. Baker EM. Suttie JW. Institution Department of Biochemistry, College of Agricultural and Life Sciences, University of Wisconsin-Madison 53706. Title Biochemical basis of warfarin and bromadiolone resistance in the house mouse, Mus musculus domesticus. Source Biochemical Pharmacology. 47(4):673-8, 1994 Feb 11. Abstract Danish mice (Mus musculus domesticus) genetically resistant to the anticoagulant action of two 4-hydroxycoumarins, warfarin and bromadiolone, were examined to determine their mechanism of resistance. The hepatic vitamin K epoxide reductase in the bromadiolone-resistant mice and in one phenotype of warfarin-resistant mice was highly insensitive to in vitro inhibition by warfarin and bromadiolone. The kinetic constants for the epoxide reductase from bromadiolone-resistant mice were also altered. The Vmax for this enzyme was decreased by 40%, and the Km for the reaction reductant, dithiothreitol, was 70% lower than that of normal mice. This phenotype of Danish resistant mice appears to have a resistance mechanism that is similar to that reported for a Welsh strain of warfarin-resistant rats. The other phenotype of Danish resistant mice had a hepatic epoxide reductase that was only slightly less sensitive to warfarin inhibition than normal. The mechanism of warfarin resistance in these mice is not apparent from the available data. Authors Lee ST. Tarn C. Wang CY. Institution Laboratory of Molecular Parasitology, Institute of Biomedical Sciences, Taipei, Taiwan. Title Characterization of sequence changes in kinetoplast DNA maxicircles of drug-resistant Leishmania. Source Molecular & Biochemical Parasitology. 56(2):197-207, 1992 Dec. Abstract We have compared kinetoplast DNA maxicircles of tunicamycin- and arsenite-resistant variants of repeatedly cloned Leishmania mexicana amazonensis showing DNA amplification with wild-type and arsenite-resistant variants of the same lineage that do not show DNA amplification. DNA restriction patterns and the degree of cross-hybridization between maxicircle DNA fragments of parasites displaying DNA amplification and those of parasites without amplification were examined. In addition, the nucleotide sequence of the cytochrome b (Cyb) gene from the coding region was compared between these two groups of parasites. Extensive changes were found in the nucleotide sequences and the amino acid sequences of the cytochrome gene of the maxicircles of variants with DNA amplification. The Cyb genes from both groups had much shorter open reading frames than the same gene from Leishmania tarentolae and Trypanosoma brucei. The simultaneous changes in maxicircles and minicircles of these variants suggest that they may confer the advantage of maintaining viable mitochondrial function under selective pressure. Authors Jarcho S. Title Medical numismatic notes. VII. Mithridates IV. Source Bulletin of the New York Academy of Medicine. 48(8):1059-64, 1972 Sep. _______________________________________________________________________________ <21:10>From schoenem@QAL.Berkeley.EDU Thu May 11 16:41:16 1995 Date: Thu, 11 May 1995 14:44:55 -0700 (PDT) From: Tom Schoenemann <schoenem@qal.Berkeley.EDU> To: email@example.com Subject: Re: "quick" evolution examples? On Thu, 11 May 1995, GLEACH,FREDERIC W. wrote: > >I would like to find a reference or two for examples of cases where > >evolution (in terms of adaptive metabolism, or something that resembles > >it so I can apply it to hypothesize about arsenic) has taken no more than a > >few thousand years. Can you think of anything? The classic example occurred with sickle-cell anemia. The allele which causes this disease is found at highest concentration in areas where malaria is endemic. Because of the details of the life cycle of the malarial parasite (Plasmodium falciparum), malaria is found primarily in agricultural areas. Agriculture in sub-Saharan Africa only goes back about 3000 years or so. The implication is that this allele has a very recent history. This is covered in most physical anthropology textbooks, e.g., Relethford, J. (1990). _The Human Species: An Introduction to Biological Anthropology_. London, Mayfield Publishing Company. I believe the original idea of the interaction of culture-change (agriculture) and biological adaptation comes from: Livingstone, F. B. (1958). "Anthropological implications of sickle cell gene distribution in West Africa." _American Anthropologist_, v.60:533-562. -Tom P. Thomas Schoenemann Department of Anthropology University of California, Berkeley (firstname.lastname@example.org) _______________________________________________________________________________ <21:11>From email@example.com Fri May 12 02:16:55 1995 Date: Fri, 12 May 1995 17:22:35 +1000 To: firstname.lastname@example.org From: email@example.com Subject: Re: apology from a spinster One of the more educated members of our departent brought this poem to notice when I circulated Polly Winsor's message on spinsters and 'humble bees'. The poem is by A.D. Hope and is in "A Late Picking: Poems 1965-1975" Angus and Robertsons 1975pp. 23-25 Clover Honey Father first noticed it: "Upon my Sam, This soil breeds spinsters! Five miles round, I swear, Live twenty old maids_not that I give a damn, But Mary and Susan here might have a care. "Daughters are perishable goods at best: At worst _Yes, dear, I do know when to stop_ But twenty at church today! Who wopuld have guessed So rich a shire could raise that blighted crop?" Susan just giggled; I totted up father's count: "Nineteen is what I make it, not twenty, Dad!" "You've missed our gruesome help here, Sarah Blount, "Haven't you, girl? Admit it!"_ and so I had. "By God!"_ he flourished his carvers in the air_ "She makes my flesh creep. No one asks my advice Of course; but how your mother puts up with her Passes my_yes, dear!yes, another slice?" Susan and I discussed it later in bed. "Father was horrid to laugh; he doesn't know! If I don't marry," said Sue, "I'd rather be dead." I laughed too: "Well, we've both some years to go." But for all that I brooded on their lives; Imagined them as young girls like me or Sue; Tried to imagine them happy mothers and wives And wondered what went wrong_ though mostly I knew. Rumour, in country places, rarely leaves misfortune a shift or nakedness a clout. At Tea-cup Time, when gossip brings home her sheaves, The skeletons rattle in closets for miles about. Miss Tabitha and Miss Mildy at the Grange had been too high and mighty, people said; Miss Prue had beauty, but no one thought it strange: Papa had lost his money. The suitors fled. Miss Martha had offers too. They had to wait _ A bed-ridden mother_ and as is often the case, When free to marry, she found it was too late; Miss Claire's club-foot cancelled that angel face. Poor, gay Miss Belle never got her man to church; There was Miss Madeleine, too_ but never mind, Too simple, too yielding: he left her in the lurch. It's an old story, and people are so unkind. Miss Sophie was unatttreactive from the start; Miss Tetty, of course had always been a shrew; But why Miss Constance with her loving heart Had never married, not even our gossips knew. Eighteen is an uncompromising age. Old maids, fag-ends of living, cat-fanciers, I thought of them with mounting pity and rage And blamed the order of the universe. My father's friend_ he lived near us in Kent_ A Mr Darwin, used to visit our house, And when I raged at him in protest, sent A twinkle at me from his beetle brows: "Yes, yes, poor things!" he said, "You have a heart That does you credit, my dear. But let me say That the great chain of being has found a part In Nature's scheme evn for them to play. You mentioned cats, I think. Each keeps a cat?" "Good God!" I said "they have them by the score!" "Indeed? Of course, I'm not surprised at that; But cats catch mice_ Well, it's what cats are for. "Their mistresses at night will put them out To hunt for field-mice_You begin to see My drift, perhaps, since as you know, no doubt, The field-mouse preys upon the bumble-bee. These hirsute bees, and they alone contrive To fertilize the dark-red clover blooms; Although it is their smaller cousins who hive The clover-honey that loads our Kentish combs. So when we find_ what does the Bible say?_ A land flowing with milk and honey, we do Not doubt, we naturalists, that there we may Expect to find old maids a-plenty too. "The state of single blessedness, you see, Is not without its talent: indeed, you might Call spinsters partners of the honey bee Bringer of life's best gifts, sweetness and light." Times change; old maids now in these parts are rare. That would have made Mr Darwin smile, because I hear old farmers here in Kent declare The honey-flow is nothing like it was. I did not marry, myself. As I recall I have never had reason to complain of that. Susan was wed, poor Sue, three times in all; But now we live together. We keep a cat. I apologise that I have not learned the conventions for italics etc. on this program. Hence some inaccuracies in this transcription. Alec Hope is one of the most loved members of this university. Gehan Wijeyewardene firstname.lastname@example.org _______________________________________________________________________________ <21:12>From email@example.com Mon May 15 13:07:19 1995 Date: Mon, 15 May 1995 11:06:42 -0700 (PDT) From: "Eugenie C. Scott" <firstname.lastname@example.org> To: email@example.com Subject: Re: "quick" evolution examples? Dear Dr. Gleach, There are a couple of possible responses to your question, depending on what you mean by evolution. If you mean the old, synthetic theory "change in gene frequencies through time" then there is plenty: pesticide resistence in insects, etc. If you mean a more useful definition of evolution, involving at least speciation (the formation of reproductively isolated groups), then there are somewhat fewer examples, though still some. Polyploidy in plants provides most of them, but I find plant examples aren't as attractive to most nonscientists as animals. Consider the discussions of semispecies, sibling species, partial speciation, etc. in such books as Dobzhansky, Ayala, Stebbins and Valentine, *Evolution* (an oldie but a goodie), especially the Drosophila semispecies stuff where hybrids contain sterile males -- a first step to speciation. Check p 192, ff, on D. willistoni. Dobzhanzky and Pavlovski took two stocks of Orinoco basin fruit flies and keep them separate for five years and found they had diverged sufficiently that the males were sterile. Nature 23:289 (1971). An article on D. pseudoobscura claims to find an isolate in the middle of evolving into a new species: Prakash, 1972, Genetics, 72:143-155. This is discussed in Michael Ruse's book, *Darwinism Defended*. Another classic is the fly (not drosophila, but another genus) that feeds on either apples or thornapples. The shift to apples was about 150 years ago, and since then there has been speciation (infertile hybrids) between the insects preferring one food source vs. the other. See Sci. Am, Feb. 1989, p. 22 "A Breed Apart". Check cichlid fish in Lake Malawi: Owen et al, Proc. Roy soc. B. 240:(1299):519-553 (1990). Mice in laboratories have been found to be sterile when backcrossed to wild types from which they were derived. See Matsuda et al, Genetic basis of XY chromosome dissociation and male sterility in interspecific hybrids. Proc. Nat. Acad. Sci 88:4850 ff (1991). I also heard of a story of a pair of wallabies that in 1916 escaped from an Oahu zoo and founded a population that has survived and been successful. Supposedly they are no longer able to interbreed with Australian wallabies, but I don't have a reference. Can anyone help? Hope this helps. Eugenie C. Scott ***************************************************************** SUPPORT SCIENCE EDUCATION! Eugenie C. Scott NCSE 925 Kearney Street El Cerrito, CA 94530-2810 510-526-1674 FAX: 510-526-1675 1-800-290-6006 firstname.lastname@example.org ***************************************************************** _______________________________________________________________________________ <21:13>From email@example.com Thu May 18 07:03:52 1995 Date: Thu, 18 May 1995 08:03:47 -0400 From: firstname.lastname@example.org (Donald Phillipson) To: Darwin-L@ukanaix.cc.ukans.edu Subject: Rapid evolution Frederick Gleach (?) asked May 11 for cases of rapid evolution. Is not Jonathan Wiener's The Beak of the Finch... evolution in Our Time (1994) about precisely this (rapid speciation under local environmental changes in the Galapagos.) | Donald Phillipson, 4180 Boundary Rd., Carlsbad | | Springs, Ont., Canada K0A 1K0; tel: (613) 822-0734 | | "What I've always liked about science is its independence from | | authority"--Ontario Science Centre (name on file) 10 July 1981 | _______________________________________________________________________________ <21:14>From email@example.com Thu May 18 11:55:18 1995 Date: Thu, 18 May 1995 09:54:36 -0700 (PDT) From: "Eugenie C. Scott" <firstname.lastname@example.org> To: email@example.com Subject: Simultaneous Discovery, Neutralism Re: simultaneous discoveries. Does anyone know more detail on the development of neutralism theory? Kimura as well as King and Jukes are given equal billing in a number of sources, and there seems to be something of a rivalry there over precedence. Perhaps some of the molecular types on this list may enlighten me. ECS ***************************************************************** SUPPORT SCIENCE EDUCATION! Eugenie C. Scott NCSE 925 Kearney Street El Cerrito, CA 94530-2810 510-526-1674 FAX: 510-526-1675 1-800-290-6006 firstname.lastname@example.org ***************************************************************** _______________________________________________________________________________ <21:15>From email@example.com Mon May 22 12:12:54 1995 Date: Mon, 22 May 1995 10:10:22 -0700 (PDT) From: "Eugenie C. Scott" <firstname.lastname@example.org> To: email@example.com Subject: Re: Rapid evolution On Sat, 20 May 1995, Donald Phillipson wrote: > Frederick Gleach (?) asked May 11 for cases of rapid evolution. Is not > Jonathan Wiener's The Beak of the Finch... evolution in Our Time (1994) > about precisely this (rapid speciation under local environmental changes > in the Galapagos.) I do not believe that speciation has been observed in the Galapagos finches, just the process of natural selection (hardly a "just"!) I'm happy t be corrected on this point if someone more familiar with these data can do so. But this brings up the question of what do we mean by "evolution?" If we mean the processes that are involved in producing the variation that distinguishes popuations, which may later (through the process of speciation) become new species, then natural selection equals evolution, genetic drift equals evolution, genetic recombination equals evolution, crossing over equals evoltuion, etc., etc., etc. This isn't very helpful. The old "changes in gene frequencies through times" definiton that many of us grew up on also is not very useful, since (as in the case of the peppered moth) changes can shift back and forth without producing anything "different." Gene frequencies change all the time. Big deal. We should stop telling students that evolution = changes in gene frequencies. "Cumulative" changes in gene frequencies helps a little, but I don't think it really comunicates what evolution is about. If we are correct to understand the history of life as resulting in a hierarchical branching of units (species, genera, families, what have you), then questions about "proof of evlution" such as that asked should refer to speciation events, rather than just changing gene frequencies. I prefer to think of evolution occurring with the formation of new species, which are not brought about directly by natural selection or other processes, of course, but by isolation mechanisms on populations that after a time can no longer exchange genes: are reprductively isolated. Eugenie ***************************************************************** SUPPORT SCIENCE EDUCATION! Eugenie C. Scott NCSE 925 Kearney Street El Cerrito, CA 94530-2810 510-526-1674 FAX: 510-526-1675 1-800-290-6006 firstname.lastname@example.org ***************************************************************** _______________________________________________________________________________ <21:16>From email@example.com Tue May 23 22:21:50 1995 Subject: A new subject- which came first: "Are we naturally social" To: Multiple recipients of list <firstname.lastname@example.org> Date: Tue, 23 May 95 23:25:46 -0400 From: Joshua Lederberg <email@example.com> <<<<<< To: SOCETH list i was writing a paper on Rousseau tonight, and i thought this may be an interesting topic. is there a state of nature? are we first individuals, uneffected by society? or are we naturally social? From: "Michael K. Bietz" <firstname.lastname@example.org> >>>>>> (I share this also with the DARWIN list) ------- The short answer is co-evolution, of the biological substratum, and of the social institutions -- which have their own history/evolution. Consider language as the paradigm, and you can take it from there. Many evolutionists in recent years have laid special emphasis on the evolution of behaviors related to social interaction, and there is no other way the "Naked Ape" could have survived against better armed predators. Cf, i.a., CN QH450/M751/v.16 Aa Cavalli-Sforza, Luigi Luca Ab Feldman, Marcus William TI Cultural transmission and evolution: a quantitative approach. CL 388 p. PP Princeton NJ: Princeton University Press. DA 1981. CN GN365.9/L959 Aa Lumsden, Charles J Ab Wilson, Edward Osborne TI Genes, mind, and culture: the coevolutionary process. CL 428 p. PP Cambridge MA: Harvard University Press. DA 1981. CN QL775/W7471 Aa Wilson, Edward Osborne TI Sociobiology: the abridged edition. CL 366 p. PP Cambridge MA: Belknap Press/Harvard University Press. DA 1980. CN QL737/P9/E34 Aa Eimerl, Sarel Ab DeVore, Irven Ac Life (Chicago) TI The primates. CL 200 p. PP New York: Time, Inc. DA 1965. ------------- Reply-to: (J. Lederberg)email@example.com -------- Dr. Joshua Lederberg Suite 400 (Founders Hall) The Rockefeller University 1230 York Avenue New York, NY 10021-6399 _______________________________________________________________________________ <21:17>From firstname.lastname@example.org Wed May 24 05:47:44 1995 Date: Wed, 24 May 1995 07:39:25 -0300 (GRNLNDST) From: Charbel Nino El-Mani <email@example.com> To: senddarwin-L <Darwin-L@ukanaix.cc.ukans.edu> Subject: jurassic intelligence (fwd) This is a message I have sent to another discussion group, but I think it addresses some issues I would also like to discuss within Darwin-L. Charbel Nino El-Hani Charbel@ufba.br ---------- Forwarded message ---------- Date: Wed, 24 May 1995 07:35:42 -0300 (GRNLNDST) From: Charbel Nino El-Mani <firstname.lastname@example.org> To: skeptic <email@example.com> Subject: jurassic intelligence I can see no use in discussing something we have no evidence for and some against. We can stay here talkng forever... Instead, I suggest we turn the question to a more interesting issue: the evolution of intelligence in extant animals, like man and dolphins. About this I can say that, for me at least, tools are not necessary consequences of the evolution of intelligence, but rather factors contributing to it. Probably both. But I would like to emphasize that the capacity of combining different symbolical signs in one only message is a better evidence that something we can call intelligence ha arisen (that is to say, language, which is not only made up of symbolical signs, but specially of a syntax which allows us to say diverse things with the same basic repertoire of signs). On the other hand, the capacity of fine manipulation of tools, related for instance with the structure of human hand, can be seen as a major factor in tthe evolution of brain. But can we see this particular path of evolution as a sufficient reason to deny the possible evolution of some other kinds of intelligence, not necesarily related to making tools? I don't think so. Charbel Nino El-Hani Institute of Biology, Federal University of Bahia. Charbel@ufba.br _______________________________________________________________________________ <21:18>From firstname.lastname@example.org Mon May 29 04:53:09 1995 Date: Mon, 29 May 1995 17:35:44 +0800 (WST) From: Hugo Bouckaert <email@example.com> Subject: Re: jurassic intelligence (fwd) To: Charbel Nino El-Mani <firstname.lastname@example.org> Cc: Multiple recipients of list <email@example.com> A book by Derek Bickerton "Language & Species" (1990 University of Chicago Press) looks into many of these issues. He basically asserts that intelligence is mediated via two different kinds of representational systems: the first is species-specific and highly functionally adapted to the species' requirements in its environment; the second is unique to humans (although developed to some degree in primates) and is an adaptable symbolic representational system, finding its expressionin language. Unlike the first representational system, thesecond representational system is able to form independent models and constructions of the world, because thinking is no longer sensory dependent but can make use of the "internalised" symbolic representation of the world (involving concepts, categories as well as a lexicon and syntax). The secondary representational system then allows us to develop models that are no longer in line with the maximisation ofsurvival and reproductive success,so that certain belief models may induce us to live a life of celibacy, or to commit suicide as a form of political protest for example. I think in many ways Bickerton hits the nail on the head,although there may be much more to say about how the secondary representational system works in particular social contexts. Hugo Bouckaert Murdoch University Bouckaer@csuvax1.murdoch.edu.au _______________________________________________________________________________ Darwin-L Message Log 21: 1-18 -- May 1995 End
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