Darwin-L Message Log 27: 1–30 — November 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 November 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 27: 1-30 -- NOVEMBER 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 November 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 Web Server at http://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 Web Server. 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. _______________________________________________________________________________ <27:1>From DARWIN@iris.uncg.edu Wed Nov 1 00:30:49 1995 Date: Wed, 01 Nov 1995 01:30:30 -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. For additional information about the group please visit the Darwin-L Web Server (http://rjohara.uncg.edu). 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. Because Darwin-L has a large membership and is sometimes a high-volume discussion group it is important for all participants to try to keep their postings as substantive as possible so that we can maintain a favorable "signal-to-noise" ratio. Personal messages should be sent by private e-mail rather than to the group as a whole. Subscribers who feel burdened from time to time by the volume of their Darwin-L mail may wish to take advantage of the digest option described below. Because different mail systems work differently, not all subscribers 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). It is therefore very important to 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. To join the group send the message: SUBSCRIBE DARWIN-L Your Name For example: SUBSCRIBE DARWIN-L John Smith To cancel your subscription send the message: UNSUBSCRIBE DARWIN-L If you feel burdened by the volume of mail you receive from Darwin-L you may instruct the listserv program to deliver mail to you in digest format (one message per day consisting of the whole day's posts bundled together). To receive your mail in digest format send the message: SET DARWIN-L MAIL DIGEST To change your subscription from digest format back to one-at-a-time delivery send the message: SET DARWIN-L MAIL ACK To temporarily suspend mail delivery (when you go on vacation, for example) send the message: SET DARWIN-L MAIL POSTPONE To resume regular delivery send either the DIGEST or ACK messages above. 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. _______________________________________________________________________________ <27:2>From email@example.com Wed Nov 1 09:34:54 1995 Date: Wed, 1 Nov 1995 19:38:34 +0400 To: firstname.lastname@example.org From: email@example.com (Ari Nave) Subject: Your posting on Darwin-L Dear Bill, I think you are quite right not to pay attention to group selectionist theories, as they offer no real mechanism for evolution. Probably reciprocity and inclusive fitness is sufficient to explain the behaviors of chimps and wolves, given the degree of relationship between individuals and the ratio of costs to benefits. At times I am sure this explains human behavior as well. Moreso for antsgiven their unique genetically similarity. However, explaining why large groups of individuals who share the same ethnicity, "race", nationality, or whatever, are willing to act out against others is a bit more complex. Not that attempts have not been made to explain such complex behaviors in purely biological terms. See in particular Pierre Van den Berghe. The Ethnic Phenomenon. New York: Elsevier, 1981. (I have included others by him below.) The basic problem of this arguments is that people who are members of a large ethnic group are not related closely enough to act in ways which are costly. According to sociobiological, people will behave in ethnocentric ways if it is to their own direct benefit. However, there are times when people seem to be racist in ways which are very costly to themselves. Similar arguments have been made in the use of rational-choice theory to explain racism. (See Banton, M. 1982. Racial and Ethnic Competition. Cambridge: Cambridge UP.) But if a group of people are behaving in a racist manner, free-riders will arise to undermine the group's solidarity. (As expressed in Olson, M. 1965. The Logic of Collective Action: Public Goods and the Theory of Groups. Cambridge, Mass., Harvard UP.) Threats of violence cannot explain such cooperative behaviors. This is the tragedy of all common goods that require cooperation. Both evolutionary and rational choice models are maximization paradigms which forget one thing. People's behaviors are largely ditermined by cultural transmission. While cultural ideas are subject to evolutionary forces, these forces are not necessarily the same as with genetics. For a good review see Boyd, R. and Richerrson, P. 1985. Culture and the Evolutionary Process. Chicago. U of Chicago P.) In a sound byte, any cultural idea, or meme (from Dawkin's cultural analogy to a gene) which reproduces at a rate faster then its detrimental effects eliminate it, will spread. Any many may be selectively neutral. Racism is a cultural construct, not a reflection of the genetic differences between populations. It may be more instructive to ask how and why such ideas have a high cultural reproductive success, if indeed they are maladaptive. On the other had, ethnocentrism may be adaptive??? This does not mean it evolved genetically. The point I am trying to make is that it is a bad ideas to compare behaviors based upon biological mechanisms alone, such as ant wars, with the behavior of people, which is subject both to biological mechanism and cultural mechanisms. The extent to which biology and culture work in tandem is a matter of some debate. See Durham, W. H. 1991. Coevolution: Genes, Culture, and Human Diversity. Stanford UP. Hope this gives you something to chew on. van den Berghe, P. Race and Racism. New York: Wiley, 1978. van den Berghe, P. and D.P. Barash. "Inclusive fitness and human family structure." American Anthropologist 79 (4 1977): 809-823. van den Berghe, P. "Bridging the paradigms." Society 15 (6 1978): 42-49. van den Berghe, P. Human Family Systems: An Evolutionary View. New York: Elsevier, 1979. van den Berghe, P. "Incest and exogomy: A sociobiological recosideration." Ethology and Sociobiology 1 (1980): 151-162. van den Berghe, Pierre L. "Human inbreeding avoidance: Culture in nature." Behavioral and Brain Sciences 6 (1983): 91-123. ven den Berghe, P. "Race and ethnicity: A sociobiological perspective." Ethnic and Racial Studies 1 (4 1978): 401-411. Ari Nave Dept. of Anthropology University of California, Los Angeles Field site: 3 Queen Alexandra Street, Beau Bassin Republic of Mauritius Tel./Fax. (230) 464-3896 e-mail: firstname.lastname@example.org _______________________________________________________________________________ <27:3>From email@example.com Wed Nov 1 20:35:24 1995 Date: Wed, 1 Nov 1995 21:37:07 +0000 To: firstname.lastname@example.org From: email@example.com (CZIKO Gary) Subject: Darwinian Art [from Gary Cziko firstname.lastname@example.org] In the not-too-distant future, I plan to submit to Darwin-L a summary of what I've learned about "universal selection theory" from the lively and interesting discussion we've had on Darwin-L. In the meantime, subscribers with access to the Web can participate in a project which uses blind variation and selective retention in the generation of art at: http://robocop.modmath.cs.cmu.edu:8001/htbin/mjwgenformI --Gary Cziko _______________________________________________________________________________ <27:4>From DARWIN@iris.uncg.edu Wed Nov 1 22:58:12 1995 Date: Wed, 01 Nov 1995 23:54:06 -0400 (EDT) From: DARWIN@iris.uncg.edu Subject: New list on theoretical approaches to history To: email@example.com Organization: University of NC at Greensboro The following information on PHILOFHI, a new list on historical theory, may be of interest to some Darwin-L subscribers. Bob O'Hara firstname.lastname@example.org ---------------------------------------- From: "Nikolai Sergeevich Rozov" <ROZOV@nw.cnit.nsk.su> Organization: Center of New Informational Tech. Date: Fri, 20 Oct 1995 21:09:22 -0700 (NSK) Subject: Philosophy of History World Wide Web page PLEASE REPOST; APOLOGIES FOR CROSS-POSTING The information on the mailing list PHILOFHI (PHILosophy OF HIstory and theoretical history) and the application for new subscribers is attainable now by WWW. Please point your Web browser to: http://darwin.clas.virginia.edu/~dew7e/anthronet/subscribe/philofhi.html Nikolai S. Rozov Professor of Philosophy PhD., Dr.Sc. Moderator of the mailing list PHILOFHI (PHILosophy OF HIstory and theoretical history) Dept. of Philosophy Tel.: (3832) 397488 Novosibirsk State University Fax.: (3832) 355237 630090, Novosibirsk E-mail: email@example.com Pirogova 2 firstname.lastname@example.org _______________________________________________________________________________ <27:5>From email@example.com Thu Nov 2 14:15:50 1995 Date: Thu, 2 Nov 1995 15:15:32 -0500 To: Darwin-L@ukanaix.cc.ukans.edu (Darwin List) From: firstname.lastname@example.org (Jeremy C. Ahouse) Subject: Darwinism Evolving by Depew & Webber Hi D-L, I have just started sampling Depew and Weber's "contribution to the history of Darwinian evolutionary theory" (preface p. xi). Have any of you worked through this? Ideas? Depew and Weber's fervent hope that complex system scientists will reunify and revive (was it dead?) evolutionary theory from the edge of chaos (border of order) may have a little too much to do with being seduced by charismatic spokesfolk at the Santa Fe Institute. Does the last part of the book infect the rest? (Let's hope it was grafted on to help MIT press sell a few more copies to the current vogue.) The complex systems community (note that complex here does not necessarily mean complicated; in this context it means simple systems with very interesting dynamics or a large number of interacting very simple systems) is doing lots of work and filled with clever people. This may well result in useful ideas - but don't uncork the bottles yet. [For a brief introduction by and some response to Kauffman see part III of Varela (1992).] Still, if you are a partisan or an interested observer you may want to listen in tomorrow: > email@example.com (Bruce Boghosian) > >Tomorrow's "Science Friday" segment on National Public Radio, hosted by >Ira Flatow, will deal with the subject of Complexity from 2 pm to 3 pm. >I have heard that the guest list will include Stuart Kauffman, John >Holland, and Peter Coveney, all of whom have recently written popular >books on the subject, as well as John Horgan who wrote the June >Scientific American article attacking the field. > >In the Boston area, NPR is carried by WBUR, 90.0 FM radio. > >Regards, >Bruce Depew, David J. & Bruce H. Weber (1995) Darwinism evolving: systems dynamics and the genealogy of natural selection. Cambridge, Mass.: MIT Press. QH361 .D46 1995 Varela, Francisco J. & Jean-Pierre Dupuy (1992) Understanding origins: contemporary views on the origin of life, mind, and society. Dordrecht [Netherlands]; Boston: Kluwer Academic. (Boston studies in the philosophy of science ; v. 130, "The material comes from an international meeting held in September 13-16, 1987 at Stanford University") Q175 .B73 v.130 __________________________________________________________ Jeremy Creighton Ahouse Biology Dept. Brandeis University Waltham, MA 02254-9110 (617) 736-4954 Lab 736-2405 FAX firstname.lastname@example.org _______________________________________________________________________________ <27:6>From email@example.com Thu Nov 2 14:18:51 1995 Date: Thu, 2 Nov 1995 15:18:29 -0500 To: Darwin-L@ukanaix.cc.ukans.edu (Darwin List) From: firstname.lastname@example.org (Jeremy C. Ahouse) Subject: Science Friday note: if you don't get "Talk of the Nation-Science Friday" it is available via the web: http://www.RealAudio.com/contentp/npr.html - Jeremy _______________________________________________________________________________ <27:7>From DARWIN@iris.uncg.edu Thu Nov 2 14:37:19 1995 Date: Thu, 02 Nov 1995 15:34:40 -0400 (EDT) From: DARWIN@iris.uncg.edu Subject: Conference on the Evolution of Human Language (fwd) To: email@example.com Organization: University of NC at Greensboro Date: Thu, 02 Nov 1995 13:05:03 +0000 (GMT) From: firstname.lastname@example.org Subject: conference To: email@example.com EVOLUTION OF HUMAN LANGUAGE Conference, University of Edinburgh, April 1st - 4th 1996 Organizing Committee: Prof. James R Hurford (University of Edinburgh), Prof. Jean Aitchison (Oxford University), Dr Chris Knight (University of East London). We are planning a conference rather tightly focussed around the following two issues (and their interrelationship); * Chronology of the spread of mankind over the planet, and its relationship to language. * The continuity/discontinuity of the language faculty with other human and nonhuman systems. We anticipate a good number of distinguished speakers. We have invited all of the following: Lyle Jenkins, Bjorn Lindblom, Michael Studdert-Kennedy, Peter McNeilage, Johanna Nichols, Steven Pinker, Frederick Newmeyer, Derek Bickerton, Joseph Greenberg, Luigi Cavalli-Sforza, Merritt Ruhlen, Jean Aitchison, Elizabeth Bates, Myrna Gopnik, John Maynard Smith, Andrew Carstairs-McCarthy, Adam Kendon, Robin Dunbar, Chris Stringer, Paul Mellars, Leslie Aiello, Clive Gamble, Rob Foley, Andy Whiten, Richard Byrne, Dan Sperber, Bill Turkel. All of these are currently making original contributions to the conference topic, from the perspective of their respective disciplines. Disciplines represented by at least one invitee include: Artificial Life, Developmental Psychology, Language Pathology, Neurology, Paleontology, Phonetics, Population Genetics, Primatology, Social Anthropology, Theoretical Linguistics. We expect that a significant number of them will attend. We will produce an edited volume based on the conference, and negotiations with C.U.P., who already have books on this topic in their publication pipeline, have started. The question of the origins of the human language faculty is an area of consuming general intellectual interest and one in which interdisciplinary collaboration is essential. Theoretical Linguistics, which has tended to be isolated from other disciplines, can benefit from this contact, and has an essential contribution to make in that linguists, as noone else, know in detail the intricate complexity of the evolved language faculty. This Edinburgh conference is not isolated. Over the past decade, similar conferences have begun to build understanding between the disparate disciplines involved. Several of the invited participants have been prominent in these previous events, but the topic of language evolution is still far from `center stage' in any of the contributing disciplines. The Edinburgh conference is designed to further the process of integrating the study of language evolution into the mainstream concerns of the disciplines involved. Another aim is to produce knowledge on the topic which will be accessible to a wide variety of laypersons, as lay speculation in this area is badly in need of a solid basis in reliable information. The John McIntyre Centre at Pollock Halls, University of Edinburgh has been booked for the conference. Aside from accommodation, the conference costs will come to around 100 per participant. To receive further information, please contact: Professor James R Hurford, Department of Linguistics, University of Edinburgh, Adam Ferguson Building, 40 George Square, Edinburgh EH8 9LL, Scotland, UK. [email: firstname.lastname@example.org] _______________________________________________________________________________ <27:8>From DARWIN@iris.uncg.edu Thu Nov 2 14:37:21 1995 Date: Thu, 02 Nov 1995 15:35:16 -0400 (EDT) From: DARWIN@iris.uncg.edu Subject: CFP: Conference on the Evolution of Human Language (fwd) To: email@example.com Organization: University of NC at Greensboro Date: Thu, 02 Nov 1995 13:05:18 +0000 (GMT) From: firstname.lastname@example.org Subject: Call for abstracts To: email@example.com CALL FOR PAPERS THE EVOLUTION OF HUMAN LANGUAGE UNIVERSITY OF EDINBURGH APRIL 1-4 1996 SPONSORS: The University of Edinburgh, the Royal Anthropological Institute, and the Linguistics Association of Great Britain. INVITED SPEAKERS INCLUDE: Derek Bickerton (U.Hawaii), Paul Bloom (U.Arizona), Robert Boyd (UCLA), Andrew Carstairs-McCarthy (U.Canterbury, N.Z.), Dan Dennett (Tufts U.), Paul Fletcher (U.Hong Kong), Myrna Gopnik (U.Montreal), Ray Jackendoff (Brandeis U.), Philip Lieberman (Brown U.), Bjorn Lindblom (U.Stockholm), Frederick Newmeyer (U.Washington), Johanna Nichols (U.C.Berkeley), Merritt Ruhlen (ex Stanford), Leon Stassen (U.Nijmegen), Chris Stringer (Natural History Museum, London), Michael Studdert-Kennedy (Haskins Labs). FOCUSSED THEMES: 1. LANGUAGE ORIGINS AND THE EMERGENCE/DISPERSAL OF MODERN HUMANS 2. CONTINUITY/DISCONTINUITY OF THE LANGUAGE FACULTY WITH OTHER HUMAN AND NONHUMAN SYSTEMS. PLEASE SEND YOUR 500-WORD ABSTRACT (DEADLINE DEC.15 1995) TO: Professor James R Hurford, Dept. of Linguistics, University of Edinburgh, Adam Ferguson Building, 40 George Square, Edinburgh EH8 9LL, or by email to: firstname.lastname@example.org _______________________________________________________________________________ <27:9>From HAAVN@Corelli.Augustana.AB.CA Fri Nov 3 12:13:21 1995 From: "Haave, Neil" <HAAVN@Corelli.Augustana.AB.CA> Organization: Augustana University College To: email@example.com, firstname.lastname@example.org, email@example.com, CIRLA-L@augustana.ab.ca Date: Thu, 2 Nov 1995 16:20:47 MDT Subject: cirla conference announcement I am trying to set up a panel discussion for the CIRLA conference in Banff, AB, this Spring (announcement attached below) and am in need of panel members. The topic will be on Postmodernism and Science. Specifically, I would like to try and produce a discussion regarding postmodern science; what is it? does it exist? is it really an issue for social scientists while being irrelevant to natural scientists? what is the role of postmodern thought on the doing of science or interpretation of nature? I am looking for diverse opinions to get a lively discussion. Please send inquiries/suggestions to: Neil Haave, Ph.D. Division of Biology and Chemistry Augustana University College Camrose, AB Canada T4V 2R3 email: firstname.lastname@example.org ********************************************************************** CONFERENCE ANNOUNCEMENT LIBERAL ARTS AND THE FUTURE OF UNIVERSITY EDUCATION May 10-11, 1996 The Banff Centre for Conferences Banff, Alberta, Canada 2nd International Conference Sponsored by: Centre for Interdisciplinary Research in the Liberal Arts (CIRLA) University education is no longer simply the concern of professional educators. It has now entered the public forum as an object of political discussion. The issues are well known: What form should public support of universities take? How should the university be held accountable for that support? How do we determine the significance and relevance of the education being offered? What is the relationship between academic freedom and tenure? Related to these issues is the role of the liberal arts and sciences in university education. Once assumed to be the cornerstone of higher education, the liberal arts and sciences have become the focus of intense political and social doubt and debate within the university, within government, and within society in general. Demands for more specialized and more practical knowledge suggest that the liberal arts are the luxury of an elite class. At the same time, however, the ever-increasing need to work across disciplines points to the potential usefulness of both the skills that the liberal arts develop, as well as the issues they address. Are the liberal arts vestiges of a lost era? Are they a ray of hope in a future of uncertainty? What, if not the liberal arts, is to count as the cornerstone of higher education? Is the very notion of a cornerstone itself anachronistic? What role do the liberal arts have within the university and (post-)modern society? The purpose of this conference is to explore recent developments in the relation between liberal arts and the university, the polis and society. But we are not only interested in conversation about the liberal arts; we also hope to foster conversation within the liberal arts, as the following topics indicate. Papers or abstracts may be submitted on any of these topics (NOTE: this list is not exhaustive, but is meant to give an idea of some relevant issues. If you have an idea for a paper or session that is not included here, please contact the director of CIRLA): University education, politics, and society - The role of the university in contemporary society - Government policy on education: What kind of citizens do we want? Who governs education? - Does the economic demand for flexible institutions mean that tenure is outmoded? - Technology, media, and the liberal arts: What are the implications of technology and the media on the shape and priorities of university education? Contemporary university education and the liberal arts and sciences - Are the liberal arts and sciences relevant (to the university, to society, to the student) anymore? - What relation is there between the liberal arts and sciences and practical education? - What relations do the liberal arts and sciences have to contemporary developments in continental philosophy? - Reinventing liberal arts: How have the liberal arts changed, and how must they change, if they are to meet contemporary challenges? Border wars within the academy - Science and the social construction of knowledge: With the publication of books like Higher Superstition, some scientists have returned fire in what they consider to be an attack on science by the humanities. How does this debate affect the university? - Tensions and opportunities in interdisciplinary research and teaching: Is co-operation possible or even desirable? If so, how? - The character of the university and the liberal arts: What types of knowledge or investigation are legitimately part of the liberal arts? Is there a way of deciding at all? Diversity and unity - Gender and tradition: Women's studies and the liberal arts. - The classroom is the world: Reflecting diversity and fostering conversation among race, religion, and/or ethnicity. - What's worth reading/viewing anymore? Ongoing issues of canon in text, art, and idea. - Fissures and bridges in knowledge, society, family, disciplines, curriculum. If you are willing to organize a symposium on one of the listed topics or on another one, please contact us. As well, there will be a poster session, in which you may display innovations or ideas for liberal arts or interdisciplinary teaching or research expressed visually. Deadline for abstracts, draft papers, poster display proposals, or session proposals: November 30, 1995 Notification of acceptance: February 1, 1996 Deadline for completed papers: March 15, 1996 Complete registration information will be mailed in the fall of 1995. For more information, please contact: Bruce Janz, Director Centre for Interdisciplinary Research in the Liberal Arts (CIRLA) c/o Chris Jensen McCloy Augustana University College 4901-46 Avenue Camrose, Alberta CANADA T4V 2R3 TEL: (403)679-1502 FAX: (403)679-1129 email: JANZB@CORELLI.AUGUSTANA.AB.CA Neil Haave, Ph.D. Department of Biology Augustana University College 4901 - 46th Avenue Camrose, AB Canada T4V 2R3 phone 403 679 1506 FAX 403 679 1129 email email@example.com _______________________________________________________________________________ <27:10>From firstname.lastname@example.org Sat Nov 4 00:28:42 1995 Date: Fri, 3 Nov 1995 23:27:05 -0700 To: email@example.com From: firstname.lastname@example.org (Sherman Wilcox) Subject: Re: Conference on the Evolution of Human Language The Edinburgh conference on the Evolution of Human Language certainly looks to be an important event. I would just like to take this opportunity to point out to the readers of DARWIN, however, that the organizers are not quite up to date with the following comment in their announcement: >We will produce an edited volume based on the conference, and >negotiations with C.U.P., who already have >books on this topic in their publication pipeline, have started. Cambridge University Press published "Gesture and the Nature of Language" by D. F. Armstrong, W. C. Stokoe, and S. E. Wilcox this spring. It takes an expressly continuity/gradualist view of language evolution. ========================================================= Sherman Wilcox email@example.com Associate Professor Dept. of Linguistics (505) 277-6353 v/tty University of New Mexico (505) 277-6355 fax Albuquerque, NM 87131 ========================================================= _______________________________________________________________________________ <27:11>From firstname.lastname@example.org Sat Nov 4 21:04:40 1995 Date: Sat, 4 Nov 1995 19:03:54 -0800 From: email@example.com (Ron Roizen ) Subject: Fwd: CADUCEUS-L 4:52--Response to Darwin Quote Qs.: To: DARWIN-L@ukanaix.cc.ukans.edu ---- Begin Forwarded Message Date: Sat, 28 Oct 1995 10:38:58 -0400 From: DFKent@aol.com Subject: Darwin quote The correspondent who asked about the authenticity of a Darwin quote can probably get his answer from Dr. Thomas Junker, Associate Editor, Darwin Letters Project, University Library, Cambridge CB3 DR7 UK. The e-mail address is firstname.lastname@example.org. DFKent (courtesy Prof. D. Kohn). _______________________________________________________________________________ <27:12>From email@example.com Sat Nov 4 21:57:30 1995 Date: Sat, 4 Nov 1995 17:56:23 -1000 From: Ron Amundson <firstname.lastname@example.org> To: Darwin-L List <email@example.com> Subject: Rupke address? Can anyone point me towards Nicolaas Rupke? His Owen books says Goetingen (no department named) and the Institute for Advanced Studies at the Australian Nat. U., but the Web yields no better connections. I'm reluctant to write to a vague address at what might be the wrong continent. And no, he's not a Darwin-L subscriber. Thanks for any hints. The name of a continent might even help (as long as it's Europe or Australia). Cheers, Ron __ Ron Amundson University of Hawaii at Hilo ronald@Hawaii.Edu _______________________________________________________________________________ <27:13>From DARWIN@iris.uncg.edu Sun Nov 5 13:14:04 1995 Date: Sun, 05 Nov 1995 14:13:46 -0400 (EDT) From: DARWIN@iris.uncg.edu Subject: New list on Popper and philosophy of science (fwd) To: firstname.lastname@example.org Organization: University of NC at Greensboro Date: Sun, 05 Nov 1995 05:52:59 -0300 From: Eliana@attach.edu.ar Subject: Advertising Popper list (request for permission) To: email@example.com Organization: University of Buenos Aires Organization: Attachment Research Center Dear Darwin-L owner, Would you mind my advertising a mailing list by the name of Popper, discussions on the Philosophy of Sciences, which I deem might be of the interest of many Darwin-L members. I enclose a description of the list. Thanks in advance, Eliana Montuori POPPER ON LISTSERV@SJUVM.STJOHNS.EDU - Philosophy of Science Discussion Popper is a moderated discussion list meant for scholars engaged in any kind of sientific or philosophical endeavour deeply concerned with, and committed to, the defence and fostering of the Scientific Method, Rationalism and Humanitarianism. Discussion on this list is intended to reflect Sir Karl R. Popper's main concerns: his attachment to Critical Rationalism, and his commitment to Democratic Humanitarianism, both inextricably imbricated to the extent that the feeling of Reason above individualism implies the ethical decision to believe in the Unity of Mankind and the radical rejection of any kind of authoritarianism. The Popper mailing list for discussions of Popper's multiplex views on Epistemology, the Scientific Method, Social and Political Issues, his involvent in the Philosophy of Mind, his controversial revisions of the Pre-Socratic philosophers, Plato, Hegel and Marx, and so on, welcomes contributions from professionals and academics currently engaged in any kind of scholarly endeavour linked with the humanities, either from a purely theoretical viewpoint or as means to buttress scientific pursuits - e.g., research projects- within a reliable epistemological framework. To subscribe to Popper, send the following command to Listserv@sjuvm.stjohns.edu in the BODY of e-mail: SUBSCRIBE POPPER yourfirstname yourlastname For example: SUBSCRIBE POPPER Max Doe Owner: Juan C. Garelli <firstname.lastname@example.org> ---------------------------end of announcement------------------------- ********************************************* * Eliana Montuori, MD * * Attachment Research Center * * 1966 Juncal 1116 Buenos Aires ARGENTINA * * Tel: +54-1 812 5521 Fax: +54-1 812 5432 * ********************************************* _______________________________________________________________________________ <27:14>From email@example.com Mon Nov 6 07:48:22 1995 Date: Mon, 6 Nov 1995 05:48:05 -0800 (PST) From: Jane Camerini <firstname.lastname@example.org> To: email@example.com Subject: Re: Rupke He is indeed in Gottingen: Institute for the History of Medicine Georg-Ausgust-Universitat Humboldtallee 36 D-37073 Gottingen Germany Jane Camerini 36 Bagley Ct. Madison WI 53705 firstname.lastname@example.org _______________________________________________________________________________ <27:15>From DARWIN@iris.uncg.edu Tue Nov 7 00:38:57 1995 Date: Tue, 07 Nov 1995 01:38:32 -0400 (EDT) From: DARWIN@iris.uncg.edu Subject: November 7 -- Today in the Historical Sciences To: email@example.com Organization: University of NC at Greensboro NOVEMBER 7 -- TODAY IN THE HISTORICAL SCIENCES 1817: JEAN ANDRE DELUC dies at Windsor, England. Born in Geneva in 1727, Deluc had emigrated to England following a business failure in 1773. A Biblical geologist, he published many works that attempted to demonstrate "the conformity of geological monuments with the sublime account of that series of the operations which took place during the Six days, or periods of time, recorded by the inspired penman." 1913: ALFRED RUSSEL WALLACE dies at Broadstone, Dorset, England. Co-discoverer with Charles Darwin of the principle of natural selection, Wallace had been an extensive traveller and a prolific writer on topics ranging from evolution and spiritualism to astronomy and vaccination. His most enduring work will be his several volumes on historical biogeography: "If we take the organic productions of a small island, or of any very limited tract of country, such as a moderate-sized country parish, we have, in their relations and affinities -- in the fact that they are _there_ and others are _not_ there, a problem which involves all the migrations of these species and their ancestral forms -- all the vicissitudes of climate and all the changes of sea and land which have affected those migrations -- the whole series of actions and reactions which have determined the preservation of some forms and the extinction of others, -- in fact the whole history of the earth, inorganic and organic, throughout a large portion of geological time." (_Island Life_, second edition, 1892.) Today in the Historical Sciences is a feature of Darwin-L, an international network discussion group on the history and theory of the historical sciences. Send the message INFO DARWIN-L to firstname.lastname@example.org or connect to the Darwin-L Web Server (http://rjohara.uncg.edu) for more information. _______________________________________________________________________________ <27:16>From email@example.com Tue Nov 7 11:18:51 1995 Date: Tue, 7 Nov 1995 11:18:27 +0000 To: firstname.lastname@example.org From: email@example.com (CZIKO Gary) Subject: Selectionism: Lessons Learned from Darwin-L [from Gary Cziko <firstname.lastname@example.org>] Over the past several weeks there has been considerable discussion on Darwin-L about what I call "universal selection theory" (UST), the blind (yet intelligently constrained) conjecture that the emergence of all adapted complexity is a result of blind variation and selective retention (BVSR), an idea going back to Karl Popper and Donald T. Campbell and one major theme of my recent book _Without Miracles: Universal Selection Theory and the Second Darwinian Revolution_ (the other theme is the movement from providential through instructionist to selectionist explanations in many areas of inquiry). I am unable to respond to each of the many posts that either supported or criticized my arguments. But I would like to attempt to synthesize and summarize what I see as the major issues and to acknowledge what I have learned from this interesting discussion. So here goes. 1. The Universality of Selection. In the course of these discussions I have been frequently referred or alluded to as a "panselectionist," "ultraselectionist," and "just-so-story adaptationist," in spite of my repeated insistence that I see selection theory limited to explanations of clear instances of adaptedness, and that not all change in the universe (indeed perhaps only a small proportion, including what happens during biological evolution) is adaptive. Perhaps it would be better to drop the "universal" (nobody talks about "universal relativity" or "universal quantum theory") and just use "selection theory." But since I see my theory as an extension of Dawkins's "universal Darwinism" (in which he argues that if life exists anywhere else in the universe it must have arisen through Darwinian selection), I am rather fond of the "universal" part (a universal account of all adaptedness). The folly of invoking Darwinian selection to account for nonadaptive, nonliving phenomena is made apparent in a delightful story provided by Ron Amundson (which he attributes to Massimo Piattelli-Palmarini) in his "Trials and Tribulations" essay: A young boy asked, Father, why do rocks fall to the ground"? His father answered, "When the world was young, my son, some rocks tended to rise away from the earth, some floated in midair, and some fell to the ground. But now all of the rising and floating rocks have drifted off into space. The ones that remain are the ones which fall to the ground. Why do all rocks fall to the ground? Natural selection, dear boy." So we do not need UST to explain the falling behavior of rocks (or that of horses falling off cliffs). We DO need it to account for the ability of horses to live on a diet of grass and water; their ability to run, mate, and reproduce; and to account for why diamonds and not lumps or coal are used in industrial drills. I have learned that I must continually emphasize that I see UST needed only to account for the emergence of adapted complexity, or risk being seriously misunderstood. 2. The Blindness of Variations. I realize now that many people took the blindness (B) of BVSR to refer to VSR (variation and selective retention) and not just to V (variation). While in natural selection it could be said that selection is also blind since there is no agent deciding what should be selected and what eliminated (Dawkins's "blind watchmaker"), blind selection is NOT a necessay condition for a selectionist process. The selection involved in modern "artificial" selection (plant and animal breeding) is anything but blind, but the process is still thoroughly Darwinian and selectionist. All that is needed is differential retention and reproduction of the variations; whether this "filtering" be blind or purposeful does not change (at least not for me) the selectionist, Darwinian nature of the process. Indeed, it was Darwin's realization of the power of artificial (purposeful) selection, together with his reading of Malthus, that provided the essential clue as to how natural selection operated. But more on nonpurposeful vs. purposeful selection later and back to the blind variations. As I have stated many times, "blind" does not mean that all variations are equally likely or that they are unconstrained. My searching-for-the-light-switch example shows how useful constraints can evolve during the cumulative BVSR process, but that additional success (the acquisition of new knowledge) always depends upon additional blind gropings ("Hey, let's try this and see what happens!"). The variations can also be systematic (in the way that an archaeologist uses a grid to systematically search a dig, or in the way a radar antenna sweeps the sky in continuous circles, or in the way a blind man taps his cane systematically from left to right and back again--a particularly appropriate example of blind variation!), and still be blind. The recognition that the variations involved in organic evolution are both constrained and blind (which I believe is rather uncontroversial) should make my argument clearer. This is why I very much wanted to get answers to the two questions I posed (twice) to Elihu Gerson: "Are the variations produced in the course of biological evolution (due to genetic mutation and sexual recombination) blind? Yes or no." "Are the variations produced in the course of biological evolution (due to genetic mutation and sexual recombination) constrained? Yes or no." I was unsuccessful in obtaining answers from him (or anyone else, as I recall). But I suspect that most Darwin-L subscribers would have no problem in answering "yes" to both questions, therefore acknowledging that variations can be both constrained and yet retain the blindness essential to the discovery of new solutions. Sexual recombination is a good example of blind but constrained genetic variation. The genes you inherit from your parents come in pairs, one from your mother and one from your father. But your father's and mother's genes also come in pairs, and which one you receive from each parent is a 50/50 coin flip. So sexual recombination is blind (and in this case also random and equiprobable), but heavily constrained since recombination usually respects the gene as units and doesn't just randomly choose half of all the nucleotide sequences of your mother and shuffle them in with half of your father's. So the variation produced by sexual recombination is quite blind but still very highly constrained, which is probably one reason why sexual reprodction is so popular among all sorts of organisms (in addition to the fun of sex, of course!). So I have learned that I must emphasize that blindess describes the variations, not necessarily the selection. And I need to try to make it clearer how variation can be both blind and constrained. 3. Nonpurposeful vs. Purposeful Selection. New adapted complexity can emerge whether the selection itself is due to the blind and stupid consequences of physics or the purposeful and intelligent action of a human being. In genetic algorithms, the programmer includes an evaluation function in the program which decides which bit strings (program "genomes") are fittest and will consequently be allowed to have sex and reproduce. This evaluation criterion is decided by a purposeful programmer for a particular reason (e.g, it describes a function which fits some data with little error). This purposeful selection does not make the process any less selectionist in nature. In natural selection, the evaluation function is the ability to reproduce. What is important is that there be a "filter" which blocks some variations and lets others pass through. Whether this "filter" is dead, stupid, and blind, or alive, intelligent, and sighted makes no fundamental difference to its selectionist character (as Darwin fortunately recognized). It is interesting to consider that the selection involved in natural selection is not necessarily purposeless, either. Sexual selection is an important factor in organic evolution. Peahens seem to prefer peacocks with large, colorful tails, and shun those with small, drab ones. So there is a purposeful element in the selection and evolution of peacocks (although admittedly it is a "lower-level" purpose since the peahen is not consciously scheming to have handsome sons who will be successful in passing on her genes). For those unwilling to ascribe any purpose to nonhuman animals (although I have no such reluctance), then consider sexual selection among humans. If the purposeful selection of scientific theories by scientists means that this process cannot be Darwinian (because the selection is purposeful and intelligent), then, by the same reasoning, the evolution of the human species (as it involves sexual selection) cannot be Darwinian either (as it is also purposeful, if perhaps somewhat less intelligent). 4. Selection "All the way down" My arguments for UST have often met the criticism that while selection may account for the emergence of human abilities to obtain knowledge about the world, selectionist processes have no or little role in the actual knowledge generating process of humans. In philosophical circles, this is known as Bradie's contrast between EEM (the evolutionary epistemology of methods) and EET (the evolutionary epistemology of theories). The idea (hope?) is that evolution has made us so damn smart so that we no longer need mechanisms of within-organism (behavioral, cognitive, or neural) selection for obtaining new knowledge of our world. Ron Amundson seemed to be of this opinion when he wrote: "As we proceed 'higher' on the hierarchical stages from evolution to psychology to social or scientific development, we should expect the explanatory force of naturalistic selection to gradually disappear" (pp. 429-430). But why should we expect this disappearance of selectionist processes? In contrast, we might well expect that evolution would instead discover the power of cumulative BVSR for use WITHIN ORGANISMS. So the role of within-organism selection may instead play a larger role in 'higher' organisms. For example, I understand that that immune system of some (all?) non-mammals contains a fixed repertoire of antibodies which does not change over the course of the organism's life. In constrast, the mammalian immune system uses a selectionist mechanism which involves the generation of a large repertoire of novel antibodies (using recombination somatic and hypermutation of b-lymphocyte genes) and reproducing (with varitions) those which are successful in binding with antigen (the very Darwinian clonal-selection theory of antibody production). Similarly, "lower" (medusa, earthworm) organisms have rather hard-wired nervous systems and are quite limited in what they can learn. Humans, in contrast, have much more plastic nervous systems and current neurophysiological research suggests that both cognitive development and learning depend on a type of "neural Darwinism" (e.g., Changeux, Edelman, Calvin, Schatz). But again, I am repeating for the most part arguments already contained in my book and so if any of you find these arguments interesting, you already know where to find a more complete treatment. Also to be found in my book are many arguments and examples for the uses of UST, both for explaining the emergence of adapted complexity in many different fields of inquiry and for engineering adapted complexity to serve human needs (as in genetic programming, computer simulations, and directed molecular evolution for drug development). (For those wanting more in-depth and less interdisciplinary treatments of UST from psychologial and philosphical perspectives, I suggest the two fairly recent books appended below, one by a Plotkin (psychologist), the other by Munz (philosopher). 5. Differences Between Organic and Cognitive Selection The discussion on Darwin-L has made me better realize that there ARE important differences between among-organism (phylogenetic) biological selection and within-organism (ontogenetic) neural/antibody/cognitive/cultural selection. The fact that cognitive/cultural selection is purposeful while biological selection is not (except for the complications of sexual selection and breeding noted above) is one such difference. The fact that "bad" within-organism variations (e.g., a deficient scientific theory) does not lead to the elimination of the responsible scientist is another. This also means that adaptive scientific and cultural evolution can take bigger leaps than biological evolution which as a rule must be gradual since large phylogenetic leaps are very unlikely to be viable (although this does not prevent the occasional "hopeful monster" from being so). The units of selection, the replicators, and the criteria for selection are all different. And, of course, there are many intelligent and useful constraints and biases on the variations produced cognitively and culturally (although, I maintain, still essentially blind when working at the frontiers of our current knowledge). So I suppose for a biologist or psychologist these differences might be considered important enough that lumping organic and neural/antibody/cognitive/cultural selection together might seem crude and downright misleading. But from my perspective, it is the similarities which are quite striking. This is because three principal explanations have been offered in the past (and still are) for the emergence of adapted complexity--(a) providence (designed by an super-intelligent and powerful creator; (b_ instruction (e.g., Lamarckism, template theory of antibody production, induction), and (c) selection, with the first two explanations replaced by the third in many areas of science (a major theme my book). From this broader perspective, the similarities between among-organism biological selection and within-organism cognitive/neural/cultural selection are quite apparent. But I readily admit that much can be learned by focusing on the differences (many of which have been brought up by Darwin-L participants, for which I am grateful) as well as on the similarities. (But might it be that the peripheral differencs are easiest to discern only after the central similarities are recognized?) 6. Resistance to Darwinian Selectionism Finally, I find it hard to resist speculating that the resistance met by UST (in particulary, within-organism BVSR) shares some characteristics with the resistance met by Darwin's theory. Darwin's theory was rejected by many (and still is) because humans were considered too special to be the consequence of an unplanned series of historical events. Even Alfred Russel Wallace fell back to creationism when it came to accounting for humans. Similarly, it seems that today there is resistance to within-organism, neural/cognitive/cultural BVSR because we humans are too special, too smart to require a process of trial-and-error elimination to advance our knowledge. Philosophers want justified, certain knowledge, not the fallible speculations that Popper's evolutionary epistemology provides (I understand that Popper was very black sheep among mainstream philosophers). Psychologists want smart cognitive processes that can reliably turn sensory experience into knowledge with no fumbling, no groping, no blind trials. This "no fumbling" approach is seen as a sign of intelligence. As Amundson wrote: " . . . a purposeful and intelligent God _could have_ created the natural world in seven days. It took natural selection four billion years. The moral of the story is this "If you've got intelligence, use it." (p. 429) But if intelligence is considered to be the ability to figure out what to do when you don't know what to do (that is, extending oneself beyond one's current abilities and skills to solve novel problems), then it may be impossible to avoid cognitive BVSR to obtain new knowledge or skills. I suppose God might be able to circumvent BVSR in solving His problems, but that puts us into the domain of skyhooks and miracles. (And by the way, genetic algorithms can work quite quickly on today's computers, suggesting that selectionist mechanisms can happen quite quickly in the vastly more sophisticated human brain--no need to wait four billion years.) So where to go from here? While I am a bit concerned about being overwhelmed again by reactions to UST, I am always interested in getting good criticism of my conjectural, speculative, blind thought trials (now this is one instance where I don't expect my use of "blind" to be questioned!). Indeed, my Popperian-inspired UST means that I must welcome and cherish such criticism. Hopefully, I will someday be able to reject UST and replace it with something better (using quite purposeful selection on my part). I may not be able to respond to all of the reactions this note may elicit, but I will read and do my best to learn from them. In this vein, I am still waiting for an alternate, nonselectionist account (also nonmiraculous, please) of the emergence of adapted complexity (note that we may not need selectionism for just plain-old (nonadapted) complexity anymore if Stuart Kauffman's self-organized "order for free" proves adequate to that task). --Gary P.S. I am starting to pull information together for my another book, tentatively entitled _The Adaptive Mind: The Darwinian Revolution in Cognitive Science_, in which I intend to provide empirical research findings in neurophysiology, psychology and anthropology which help us to understand the human mind as BVSR machine. It would be much appreciated if anyone having relevant references not already on the Selection Theory Bibliography (http://www.ed.uiuc.edu/facstaff/g-cziko/stb/) would send them to me. References: Amundson, Ronald. (1989). The Trials and Tribulations of Selectionist Explanations. In _Issues in Evolutionary Epistemology_ K. Hahlweg & C.A. Hooker, eds. SUNY Press. BD161 .I86 1989 Munz, Peter. (1993). _Philosophical Darwinism: On the origin of knowledge by means of natural selection_. London: Routledge. Plotkin, Henry. (1994). _Darwin machines and the nature of knowledge_. Cambridge: Harvard University Press. _______________________________________________________________________________ <27:17>From HAAVN@Corelli.Augustana.AB.CA Wed Nov 8 17:46:58 1995 From: "Bruce Janz" <JANZB@Corelli.Augustana.AB.CA> Organization: Augustana University College To: CIRLA-L@AUGUSTANA.AB.CA Date: Wed, 8 Nov 1995 16:07:02 MDT Subject: CIRLA Conference Update Update for "Liberal Arts and the Future of University Education" I am pleased to announce our first keynote speaker. His name is Dr. Peter Emberley, director of Centre for Liberal Education and Public Affairs at Carleton University, and Professor in the department of Political Science at Carleton. He is the author of several books, including *Bankrupt education: The decline of liberal education in Canada* (co-authored with W. R. Newell), *Values education and technology: The ideology of dispossession*, and the forthcoming Penguin release *Zero tolerance: Hot-button politics in Canada's universities*. He is also an expert on George Grant, having edited *By loving our own: George Grant and the legacy of Lament for a nation* and co-editing volumes 1-4 of the collected works of Grant. His concern for the state of the liberal arts has also led him to spearhead a new degree program and college, based at Carleton University, called the College of the Humanities. The struggles and issues that occur in such a project gives Dr. Emberley more than a theoretical appreciation of the issues at stake. Besides his scholarly activity, he brings to the conference an established public presence. He has been on CBC's Morningside, Cross Country Check-up, Wild Rose Country, and other forums discussing the state of education in Canada. He has been keynote speaker at several conferences in the United States. And, he will be on a speaking tour in 1996 to promote his upcoming book and highlight the issues of our conference as well. We believe he is a very good addition to our program. We are working on other keynote addresses, and of course, are accepting paper and session proposals as well. Don't leave your proposal to the last minute. Bruce Janz +--------------------------------------------------------------------+ |Bruce B. Janz | |Assistant Professor of Philosophy | |Director, CIRLA (Centre for Interdisciplinary | | Research in the Liberal Arts) | |Augustana University College (403)679-1524| |4901-46 Avenue 1-800-661-8714| |Camrose, Alberta Fax: (403)679-1129| |CANADA T4V 2R3 e-mail: JANZB@CORELLI.AUGUSTANA.AB.CA| +--------------------------------------------------------------------+ _______________________________________________________________________________ <27:18>From DARWIN@iris.uncg.edu Thu Nov 9 00:46:56 1995 Date: Thu, 09 Nov 1995 01:46:32 -0400 (EDT) From: DARWIN@iris.uncg.edu Subject: November 9 -- Today in the Historical Sciences To: email@example.com Organization: University of NC at Greensboro NOVEMBER 9 -- TODAY IN THE HISTORICAL SCIENCES 1623: WILLIAM CAMDEN dies. Camden studied at St. Paul's School and at Oxford University, where his interest in antiquities began to develop and where he later endowed the first professorship in history at an English university. Following the example of an earlier generation of continental European antiquarians, Camden spent much of his life travelling widely in the British Isles collecting and describing Roman remains, transcribing inscriptions, and searching through ecclesiastical and public archives. The product of his labors, _Britannia_ (London, 1586), was the first comprehensive historical and topographical survey of British antiquities, and it established a new standard of scholarship for an entire generation of British historians. Today in the Historical Sciences is a feature of Darwin-L, an international network discussion group on the history and theory of the historical sciences. Send the message INFO DARWIN-L to firstname.lastname@example.org or connect to the Darwin-L Web Server (http://rjohara.uncg.edu) for more information. _______________________________________________________________________________ <27:19>From DARWIN@iris.uncg.edu Tue Nov 14 12:54:17 1995 Date: Tue, 14 Nov 1995 13:52:42 -0400 (EDT) From: DARWIN@iris.uncg.edu Subject: November 14 -- Today in the Historical Sciences To: email@example.com Organization: University of NC at Greensboro NOVEMBER 14 -- TODAY IN THE HISTORICAL SCIENCES 1797: CHARLES LYELL is born at Kinnordy, Forfarshire, Scotland. After making preparations for a career in law, Lyell's interests will turn increasingly toward geology, and his _Principles of Geology_ (1830-1833) will become one of the foundational works on the historical sciences published during the nineteenth century: "When we study history, we obtain a more profound insight into human nature, by instituting a comparison between the present and former states of society. We trace the long series of events which have gradually led to the actual posture of affairs; and by connecting effects with their causes, we are enabled to classify and retain in the memory a multitude of complicated relations -- the various peculiarities of national character -- the different degrees of moral and intellectual refinement, and numerous other circumstances, which, without historical associations, would be uninteresting or imperfectly understood. As the present condition of nations is the result of many antecedent changes, some extremely remote and others recent, some gradual, others sudden and violent, so the state of the natural world is the result of a long succession of events, and if we would enlarge our experience of the present economy of nature, we must investigate the effects of her operations in former epochs." (_Principles of Geology_, vol. 1, 1830.) Today in the Historical Sciences is a feature of Darwin-L, an international network discussion group on the history and theory of the historical sciences. Send the message INFO DARWIN-L to firstname.lastname@example.org or connect to the Darwin-L Web Server (http://rjohara.uncg.edu) for more information. _______________________________________________________________________________ <27:20>From email@example.com Thu Nov 16 18:18:10 1995 Date: Thu, 16 Nov 1995 19:16:27 -0500 To: Darwin-L@ukanaix.cc.ukans.edu (Darwin List) From: firstname.lastname@example.org (Jeremy C. Ahouse) Subject: Maynard-Smith reviews Dennett Hi Darwin-L, A couple of months ago Bob O'hara suggested an article describing a debate around Helena Cronin's book (Griffiths, 1995). That article lead to a smallish discussion on this list about Dennett's livid defense of Cronin. Gould had reviewed part of her book negatively (Gould, 1992). Dennett and John Maynard-Smith came back hard (Dennett, 1993; Maynard-Smith, 1993). Now that Dennett's book (Dennett, 1995) is out, we might get another round in the New York review. This time it starts with a (predictable) kiss job by Maynard-Smith (Maynard-Smith, 1995). It will be interesting to see if SJ Gould can keep himself out of the nastiness that passes for academic criticism when it comes from Dennett and now Maynard-Smith; "Gould occupies a rather curious position, particularly on his side of the Atlantic. Because of the excellence of his essay, he has come to be seen by non-biologists as the preeminent evolutionary theorist. In contrast, the evolutionary biologists with whom I have discussed his work tend to see him as a man whose ideas are so confused as to be hardly worth bothering with, but as one who should not be publicly criticized because he is at least on our side against the creationists. All this would not matter, were it not that he is giving non-biologists a largely false picture of the state of evolutionary theory." (Maynard-Smith, 1995) harsh... I have previously mentioned to this list (and found some resonance here) that I find Dennett's approach (building a straw opposition and then savaging it) disappointing (at a minimum). I found his effort ponderous and so incomplete (if not incorrect) as to be useless for students or colleagues - and not even usable as that kind of book you give to in-laws to help them understand what it is that you are willing to work late into the night to understand. There have been a few other reviews of Dennett that I have looked at (Gottlieb, 1995; Masters, 1995; Papineau, 1995; Rorty, 1995) and some that I haven't yet tracked down (Holt, 1995; Lewin, 1995). So far I only liked Master's piece and it was too short. Most of the rest seem to regurgitate the story as Dennett frames it... too bad really. Maybe Griffiths will weigh in. I don't mean to start another go 'round - we have our own strident defender of vapid selectionism on this list ... so Cziko you can write to me directly ;-) I just wanted to give the interested among you the heads-up on the Maynard-Smith piece. - Jeremy p.s. Saddest to me is that this kind of self righteous simple-answers-evolutionary-theory might be stemmed if some of these folks took a good course in ecology or developmental genetics. ___________________ Dennett, D. (1993). Confusion over evolution: an exchange. In "New York Review of Books", 14 January. pp. 43-44. Dennett, D. C. (1995). "Darwin's dangerous idea: evolution and the meanings of life." Simon & Schuster, New York. Gottlieb, A. (1995). We are all cousins: Darwin's Dangerous Idea. In "The Spectator", Vol. 275, 23 September. pp. 34-36. Gould, S. J. (1992). The confusion over evolution. In "New York Review of Books", 14 January. pp. 47-54. Griffiths, P. E. (1995). The Cronin Controversy. Brit. J. Phil. Sci. 46, 122-138. Holt, J. (1995). Bookshelf: Wholly DNA: Defending natural selection. In "The Wall Street Journal", 4 August. pp. 6 (sec. A). Lewin, R. (1995). Disrobing the Naked Ape. In "Los Angeles Times", 14 May. pp. 3 (sec BR). Masters, J. (1995). The Rules of the Game. In "Book World", 16 July. pp. 8. Maynard-Smith, J. (1993). Confusion over evolution: an exchange. In "New York Review of Books", 14 January. pp. 43. Maynard-Smith, J. (1995). Genes, Memes, & Minds. In "New York Review of Books", 30 November. pp. 46-48. Papineau, D. (1995). Natural Selections. In "The New York Times Book Review", 14 May. pp. 13 (sec 7). Rorty, R. (1995). Cranes and Skyhooks. In "Lingua Franca", pp. 62-65. Jeremy C. Ahouse Biology Department Brandeis University Waltham, MA 02254-9110 ph: (617) 736-4954 fax: (617) 736-2405 email: email@example.com "I am a carnivorous fish swimming in two waters, the cold water of art and the hot water of science." -Salvador Dali _______________________________________________________________________________ <27:21>From firstname.lastname@example.org Sat Nov 18 12:42:46 1995 Date: Sat, 18 Nov 1995 12:42:41 -0600 (CST) From: Gregory Mayer <email@example.com> Subject: Re: Maynard-Smith reviews Dennett To: firstname.lastname@example.org I feel a bit sheepish putting in a few good words for John Maynard Smith, for he scarcely needs my approbation, but some members of the list, especially non-biologists, may be unfamiliar with him and his work, and they might be misled by Jeremy Ahouse's comments. Jeremy's comment mentions others besides Maynard Smith (i.e. Dennett and Cziko), and I am not certain if all of his characterizations are directed specifically at Maynard Smith as opposed to these others, but they include terms such as "predictable", "nast[y]", "harsh", "strident", "vapid", "self righteous", and needing "a good course in ecology or developmental genetics." This is not the sort of characterization that I would make of Maynard Smith. Taking the last item first, far from needing to take such courses, Maynard Smith could _offer_ such courses, which, I daresay would be salutary for all of us to take. Although primarily an evolutionary biologist, Maynard Smith is well known for his ecological work, and is the author of _Models in Ecology_ (Cambridge Univ. Press, 1974). As an evolutionist, his greatest interests have been in adaptation, and thus the organism-environment relation (i.e. ecology) has always been at or near the surface of his work. His earliest work, on the locomotor and feeding adaptations of vertebrates, is explicitly about how it is that organisms function in their environments. As regards developmental genetics, this is in fact the field in which Maynard Smith has done his most important laboratory work, especially notable being his work on bristles in _Drosophila_ with K. Sondhi. Although it has been some years since this has been the primary focus of his work, he has continued to write on the subject, contributing, for example, to a volume on _Development and Evolution_ (Cambridge Univ. Press, 1983) edited by the noted non-Darwinian developmental biologist Brian Goodwin. As regards the tone of his arguments, I think that familiarity with the body of his writings would show that to characterize it as strident or self-righteous is incorrect. Far from it, his tone has almost always been fair, critical, and amicable, although forthright in the presentation of his own views. Maynard Smith has disagreed on various issues with various other biologists over the years (including Gould), and engaged in published debates, but on the whole these have been conducted in such a manner that the criticsm is, (as W.D. Matthew, the paleontologist, put it concerning his debates on zoogeography with T. Barbour) "peculiarly welcome, not merely because of its couteous and considerate tone, but because of the author's wide field experience and knowledge". In his writings and at meetings, Maynard Smith has been in fact a conciliator, trying to find points of agreement and value in opposing opinions. He co-authored with several developmentalists a paper on the nature of developmental constraints in the _Quart. Rev. Biol._ in an explicit attempt to find common ground. As far as his particular relation with Gould is concerned, I would first point out that the two have longstanding differences of opinion on several issues, such as species selection, the locus of selection, adaptation, etc. Nonetheless, there is not a hint of animosity by either party in many published comments; far from it, Maynard Smith once wrote, in a review of a collection of Gould's essays that "Often he infuriates me, but I hope he will go right on writing essays like these," and this is typical. Maynard Smith has been among those more population-genetically oriented evolutionary biologists who have welcomed the incorporation of paleontological and developmental viewpoints, including Gould's (see, e.g., _Nature_ 309:401-402, 1984). It is of course possible that their views of one another have changed, and there is some hint of it in recent exchanges: Maynard Smith found Gould's review of Cronin "curiously ill-tempered" (and, indeed, if Gould's review were ill-tempered [I have not seen it], it would be unusual for Gould), and Gould thought Maynard Smith was acting as a "good cop" in his reply, but a policeman nonetheless. And Maynard Smith's latest in the _NY Review of Books_ might be read as further evidence of a change, but the harshest statement (about being "confused") is a report of a consensus of others' views; that Gould's views are mistaken (and thus misleading to non-biologists) is something Maynard Smith has said all along. I don't think Maynard Smith is best characterized as predictable either. In fact, I was quite surprized at the most theoretically important claim in his review of Dennett (about the difficulty of distiguishing designed vs. evolved adaptations). I happen to think he errs on this point (and thus would probably agree with Gould), but it does point out that his views are not recited from some platform. It is worth mentioning in this context that, despite Maynard Smith's support of a gene-centered view of evolution and his interest in animal behavior and sociobiology, it was his review, with N. Warren (_Evolution_ 36:620-627, 1982), of Lumsden and Wilson's _Genes, Mind, and Culture_ that most decisively critiqued the strong program of human sociobiology, and it was all the more damning because it was written with such evident sympathy and gentility. Maynard Smith is one of the most important and influential evolutionary biologists of our time, arguably the most significant figure in British evolutionary biology since Fisher and Haldane. Although one may disagree with him, one ignores his views at one's own peril. Evolutionary biologists on the list will be well familiar with his several books and many papers; others might wish to look at a collection of his more popular essays and book reviews entitled in the USA _Did Darwin Get It Right_ (Chapman and Hall, NY, 1989), but with another title (something with the word "sex" in it, I think) in the UK. Having said perhaps more than a few words on Maynard Smith's behalf, I would like to say that, except as historical researches, I hope that such analyses of a disputant's character and credentials would be unnecessary, and not something we will regularly engage in. Gregory C. Mayer email@example.com _______________________________________________________________________________ <27:22>From firstname.lastname@example.org Sat Nov 18 19:47:43 1995 Date: Sat, 18 Nov 1995 15:47:10 -1000 From: Ron Amundson <email@example.com> To: firstname.lastname@example.org Subject: Re: Maynard-Smith reviews Dennett List: I generally appreciate and agree with Gregory's defense of J. Maynard Smith. I know from discussion that Gould took M.Smith's criticism of his (G's) review of Cronin in good spirits, though he considered Dennett's to be out of line. Gould generally considers M. Smith to be a thoughtful and resonsible critic. As does Richard Lewontin, in fact. As Gregory notes, M. Smith has in the past described Gould as not representing mainstream biology; that fact alone would in part justify Jeremy's comments about how that part of his review is "as would be expected." I haven't seen the review Jeremy cites and I was surprised at his description of M. Smith. On the other hand, Jeremy's 'personalizing' the discussion is hard to avoid in some of these contexts; a lot of Dennett's book attributes to non-Dawkinsians some manner of mystical yearnings for vitalism or something. Ad hominem begets ad hominem. I also do appreciate Jeremy's bibliography of reviews of Dennett; the book is too new for the review catalogs to list them. Ron __ Ron Amundson University of Hawaii at Hilo ronald@Hawaii.Edu _______________________________________________________________________________ <27:23>From email@example.com Mon Nov 20 08:43:10 1995 Date: Mon, 20 Nov 1995 09:44:01 -0500 To: firstname.lastname@example.org From: email@example.com (Jeremy C. Ahouse) Subject: Re: Maynard-Smith reviews Dennett Gregory Mayer <firstname.lastname@example.org> writes: > I feel a bit sheepish putting in a few good words for John >Maynard Smith, for he scarcely needs my approbation, but some members of >the list, especially non-biologists, may be unfamiliar with him and his >work, and they might be misled by Jeremy Ahouse's comments. Jeremy Ahouse responds: Gregory Mayer should not feel sheepish about this at all. J M-S has done interesting things esp in ecology and bringing game theory into the loop. Given his long background in this area - I am a bit surprised to see him embrace the arguments that Dennett provides - except maybe as "the enemy of my enemy is my friend." (This is why I offered references to the Dennett & M-S reaction to Gould in the earlier Cronin episode.) I do think that his use of a review in NYR to suggest that Gould's science is not up to snuff - even as he does so by hiding behind reporting what others think - was "harsh". I offered the whole quote - because I assumed that you (all) would be struck by the same thing. My frustration with part of this debate (and my characterizing the Cziko/Dennett position (not necessarily J M-S's) as vapid selectionism) comes from sense that they are not engaging the _good stuff_ (developmental genetics) and willfully misreading other people's positions (savaging strawmen). I am shoulder to shoulder with Dennett (and I think Cziko) in thinking that using (very) local explanations to understand global phenomena is a wonderful step in the history of our relationship to describing the world around us - Dennett refers to the psychological impact of this as a "universal acid." Additionally, I agree that appeals to magic are long out of fashion (one of my favorite Sydney Harris cartoons shows a physicist in front of the board deriving some result... the equations move from the upper left to the lower right and are interrupted in the middle with the words "and a miracle occurs"... the person looking on offers "this step may need some clarification"). It is Dennett and Cziko's claim that their colleague are being led by the nose by desires for miracles that made me suspicious that this rhetorical flourish - was leading to some deep caricature of their fellow (circa 1995) researchers. I have been asked by Dan Dennett to stop badmouthing him and show in detail how his characterization of Gould's arguments are unfair, mistaken, or even misleading*. At this point, this seems very appropriate... though on a Monday morning looking out at Thanksgiving week ahead of me, I don't know if I will be able to offer this for you all to chew on before you are chewing on your stuffing and cranberry dressing. I hadn't done so explicitly, thus far, because I didn't know if there would be an interest in it, I had spent a good deal of time trying to pry Cziko from his pan-selectionist stance with examples (note that he insists that his stance is not this), and then there is the old research that has to be done and the fellowships to be written. Plus, I (not so) secretly hoped someone else would do it. While I prepare a short review of this subject I would ask you to read the Cronin exchange and see how the words strike you. I will confess that until I came upon them I had a generally warm feeling toward Dennett having seen him speak here in the Boston area and enjoying his book "Consciousness Explained" - it was in reading that review that it occurred to me that something was up. I recall asking (not telling) this list, why would he write so angrily? (For those of you less interested in the soap opear aspects of this lovers tiff** read Cronin herself) In any case, let me reemphasize that my words of disdain were for M-S only in that he chose an inapropriate forum for a broadside (you are encouraged to judge his words yourself - as I know you would anyway). And I will quickly and enthusiastically admit that my encouraging the others to take a good ecology or developmental genetics course was presumptuous and unfair - they may well have done this already - they just don't write as if they are sensitive to the diversity or the recent progress in these fields. Happy Thanksgiving, - Jeremy *>Every now and then somebody forwards me a diatribe by you about me, and I >must not be getting the good ones, since so far, all they contain is >condemnation without details. "ponderous" "incomplete" etc. plus your >claim that it is I who was creating and savaging straw men. Well, why >don't you give me some details. My analysis of Gould's confusions over >the years was sent to Gould more than a year before publication, with an >invitation to respond, to clarify, to show me where I was misinterpreting >him or being unfair. He did, eventually, respond and we spent several >hours going over the draft of my chapters. I made every change he could >support with text and/or argument. He has not responded since then. I am >completely confident that I have been more than fair to Gould, and I have >been receiving words of support from biologists (of every persuasion) >From all over the world. Gould has chosen not to comment. Maybe one of his >supporters, such as you, would like to try to show, in some detailed way, >where my analysis is unfair, mistaken, or even misleading. Or you may go >on badmouthing me, I don't care, since I won't take you seriously if you >don't make an attempt to give me details. You may share this message with >others, if you wish. > >Dan Dennett **I must assume that all of the participants in this "debate" do really care about a) getting it right, b) not trivializing things that are complicated, and c) are galvanized by and enthusiastic about Darwinian explanations and evolution in particular. __________________________________________________________ Jeremy Creighton Ahouse Biology Dept. Brandeis University Waltham, MA 02254-9110 (617)736-4954 Lab 736-2405 FAX email@example.com _______________________________________________________________________________ <27:24>From firstname.lastname@example.org Mon Nov 20 12:44:36 1995 Date: Mon, 20 Nov 1995 13:44:34 -0500 To: email@example.com From: firstname.lastname@example.org (Jeremy C. Ahouse) Subject: thanks Ron, Thanks for the defense. I overstepped in putting M-S in with Dennett and Cziko, he actually works on these problems and has an earned opinion. I was just taken aback by his comment (or reportage about his friends feelings) about Gould. I guess this will get me to write a short screed (let's hope it isn't received as one) about Gould as mystic, a diluted definition of algorithms, ... (any suggestions as to good morsels to hold up to the light). Darn, but I didn't want to have to study D's Dang Idea - but I guess I brought this upon myself. The problem as I see (part of) it is that this is seen as a struggle for the hearts and minds of the interested lay audience. This is captured in M-S's review "All this would not matter, were it not that he is giving non-biologists a largely false picture of the state of evolutionary theory." This also is what drives Dennett... his colleagues don't get evolution and they tell him that Gould is on their side. So any response will have to be at a meta-level. But I am in it - I don't know if I can take enough steps back... these are actual issues for me in understanding developmental regulation and evolution's part in that. have a great week. As a vegetarian, Thanksgiving is always an opportunity to cook something weird and wonderful - are Turkey dinners a big deal in Hawaii? We definitely are having spiced cider and fireplace weather- brrrrr. cheers, Jeremy _______________________________________________________________________________ <27:25>From jacobsk@ERE.UMontreal.CA Tue Nov 21 09:26:43 1995 From: jacobsk@ERE.UMontreal.CA (Ken JACOBS) Subject: Re: Maynard-Smith sniping at SJG To: email@example.com Date: Tue, 21 Nov 1995 10:24:59 -0500 (EST) Some of the comments in this thread seem to be surprised at Maynard-Smith's suggestion that SJG's ideas are less than unanimously received with praise by colleagues, all the while that his popular status soars. I offer up only one source to suggest that this has been a long-standing issue: Davis, B.D. 1983 Neo-Lysenkoism, IQ, and the press. Public Interest 73:41-60 [followed by Gould reply Pub.Int. 75:148-151, and reply PubInt 75:152-5] Ken Jacobs anthropologie U de M firstname.lastname@example.org _______________________________________________________________________________ <27:26>From RMBURIAN@VTVM1.CC.VT.EDU Tue Nov 21 09:30:51 1995 Date: Tue, 21 Nov 95 10:01:59 EST From: "Richard M. Burian" <RMBURIAN@VTVM1.CC.VT.EDU> Subject: Gregory Mayer's Characterization of Maynard Smith To: email@example.com Dear Darwin-L members, As one of the co-oranizers of the meeting that resulted in the the Quarterly Review of Biology article ("Developmental Constraints and Evolution..." QRB 60 (1985):265-287) to which Gregory Mayer refers in discussing John Maynard Smith's character and the character of his contributions to the various debates in which he has been engaged, I feel I must second and support what Mayer says. This conference involved eleven people, chosen for the divergence of their viewpoints, but also for their willingness to listen seriously to others and take their arguments into account. Afte 3 1/2 days, it appeared very likely that we would not reach any sort of consensus, although we would have clarified the grounds of disagreement among us. And then John stepped forward and said, in effect, "If I may go to the board, I think I can outline the things we have accomplished." In the process, he laid out what became the outline of the piece that nine of us wrote together. He also signified clearly where he disagreed and why with various positions. There can be no question that he was searching for common ground, playing the role of tough-minded conciliator _and_ advocate, but insisting that the alternatives that his colleagues were ready to defend as viable against his arguments remain in the paper. There was absolutely no question as to who should be first author and why -- the form and organization of the paper (which would not have come about without his intervention) are his even though it stakes out a num- ber of positions that he did not then share (or fully share). And in the course of our work he was absolutely clear about the respect he held for those with whom he disagreed (including, among others, Gould, whom I mention only because he has been part of the discussion on this list) and the need to properly represent their positions in order that the debate cover open issues and provide them with full and fair treatment. While I have not yet read the exchanges that have occasioned the heat (and some light) on our list by Gould, Dennett, Cronin, Maynard Smith et al., I cannot imagine that Jeremy Ahouse's characterization of Maynard Smith's occasional acerbic comments are correct in their ascription of motive and personal animus. Perhaps I should add, for the record that the order of authors in the QRB piece put Maynard Smith as first author by unanimous consent, the two organizers in alphabetical order, and the six others who stayed the course at the meeting and all subscribed to the contents of the paper in alphabetical order. Please read this as a plea to keep our debates on issues and not personalities. We have enough to argue about on substance without adding animus which (nearly always) detracts from the substance of the arguments. Dick Burian Richard Burian voice: 540 231-6760 firstname.lastname@example.org Science Studies fax: 540 231-7013 or Virginia Tech email@example.com Blacksburg, VA 24061-0247 or USA firstname.lastname@example.org _______________________________________________________________________________ <27:27>From DARWIN@iris.uncg.edu Thu Nov 23 00:33:43 1995 Date: Thu, 23 Nov 1995 01:33:37 -0400 (EDT) From: DARWIN@iris.uncg.edu Subject: November 23 -- Today in the Historical Sciences To: email@example.com Organization: University of NC at Greensboro NOVEMBER 23 -- TODAY IN THE HISTORICAL SCIENCES 1553/1616: PROSPERO ALPINI, botanist and physician, is born at Marostica, Italy; he will die on this day at Padua in 1616. One of the first European physicians to study plants in a non-medicinal context, Alpini will travel to Egypt and Crete, and will publish the first description of the Egyptian flora, _De Plantis Aegypti_ (1592). In 1603 Alpini will assume the directorship of the botanical garden at the University of Padua; his son, Alpino, will succeed him in this position after Alpini's death. Today in the Historical Sciences is a feature of Darwin-L, an international network discussion group on the history and theory of the historical sciences. Send the message INFO DARWIN-L to firstname.lastname@example.org or connect to the Darwin-L Web Server (http://rjohara.uncg.edu) for more information. _______________________________________________________________________________ <27:28>From DARWIN@iris.uncg.edu Sat Nov 25 00:26:45 1995 Date: Sat, 25 Nov 1995 01:26:38 -0400 (EDT) From: DARWIN@iris.uncg.edu Subject: November 25 -- Today in the Historical Sciences To: email@example.com Organization: University of NC at Greensboro NOVEMBER 25 -- TODAY IN THE HISTORICAL SCIENCES 1690: EDWARD LHWYD, pioneering antiquarian and student of dialect history, writes from Oxford to his friend and colleague JOHN RAY at Black Notley: Considering your local words since I read your letter, I find some amongst the north-country words to bear affinity with the Welsh, both in sound and signification, which possibly may be some remains of the British tongue continued still in the mountainous parts of the north. Of these, if you please, I shall hereafter send you a catalogue; but in the mean time I must confess, that although they may agree in sound and sense, it will be difficult to distinguish whether they have been formerly borrowed from the Britons, or whether they are only an argument that the ancient British language had much affinity with those of Germany, Denmark, &c. I omit the supposition of the Welsh borrowing them from the English, in regard I find them not (at least but very few of them) used by the borderers of both nations; and the Britons might leave them in Westmoreland, Cumberland, &c., having heretofore lived there; but the English of those parts could communicate nothing of their language to the Welsh, in regard they have never lived in Wales nor have bordered on them. Moreover, some of these words are in the 'Armorican Lexicon,' and the Britons that went to Armorica left this country before the Saxons came in. Today in the Historical Sciences is a feature of Darwin-L, an international network discussion group on the history and theory of the historical sciences. Send the message INFO DARWIN-L to firstname.lastname@example.org or connect to the Darwin-L Web Server (http://rjohara.uncg.edu) for more information. _______________________________________________________________________________ <27:29>From DARWIN@iris.uncg.edu Mon Nov 27 22:40:30 1995 Date: Mon, 27 Nov 1995 23:40:14 -0400 (EDT) From: DARWIN@iris.uncg.edu Subject: Chronicon -- An Online Journal of History (fwd) To: email@example.com Organization: University of NC at Greensboro --begin forwarded message-------------- I would like to remind you all that the homepage of Chronicon is at http://www.ucc.ie/chronicon. Chronicon is a new, online, peer reviewed journal of history. We hope to publish the first issue in the spring of 1996. You are all welcome to view our homepage, to which submission guidelines will shortly be added. Anyone wishing to submit articles for conisderation is most welcome to email the editors at firstname.lastname@example.org Apologies for any duplicate copies of this mail you receive Mike Cosgrave Joint Editor, Chronicon --end forwarded message---------------- _______________________________________________________________________________ <27:30>From DARWIN@iris.uncg.edu Wed Nov 29 12:53:19 1995 Date: Wed, 29 Nov 1995 13:53:01 -0400 (EDT) From: DARWIN@iris.uncg.edu Subject: November 29 -- Today in the Historical Sciences To: email@example.com Organization: University of NC at Greensboro NOVEMBER 29 -- TODAY IN THE HISTORICAL SCIENCES 1627: JOHN RAY is born at Black Notley, Essex, England. He will attend Trinity College, Cambridge, and will become one of the leading naturalists and antiquarians of his generation. Ray's earliest works will be in botany, and his catalog Cambridge plants, _Catalogus Plantarum Circa Cantabrigiam Nascentium_ (1660), will set a standard for local floras. He will be best remembered for his influential volume on natural theology, _The Wisdom of God Manifested in the Works of Creation_ (1691), but Ray will span the entire range of historical inquiry from the creation of the world in _Miscellaneous Discourses Concerning the Dissolution and Changes of the World Wherein the Primitive Chaos and Creation, the General Deluge, Fountains, Formed Stones, Sea-Shells Found in the Earth, Subterraneous Trees, Mountains, Earthquakes, Vulcanoes, the Universal Conflagration and Further State, are Largely Discussed and Examined_ (1692), to the history and geography of the English language in _A Collection of English Words Not Generally Used, With Their Significations and Original, in Two Alphabetical Catalogues, the One of Such as are Proper to the Northern, the Other to the Southern Counties_ (second edition, 1691). Today in the Historical Sciences is a feature of Darwin-L, an international network discussion group on the history and theory of the historical sciences. Send the message INFO DARWIN-L to firstname.lastname@example.org or connect to the Darwin-L Web Server (http://rjohara.uncg.edu) for more information. _______________________________________________________________________________ Darwin-L Message Log 27: 1-30 -- November 1995 End
© RJO 1995–2016