Darwin-L Message Log 35: 84–108 — July 1996

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 July 1996. 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 35: 84-108 -- JULY 1996

A Network Discussion Group on the
History and Theory of the Historical Sciences

Darwin-L@raven.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 public messages posted to Darwin-L during July 1996.
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 on the Darwin-L Web Server at
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<35:84>From ahouse@hydra.rose.brandeis.edu Tue Jul 23 09:49:09 1996

Date: Tue, 23 Jul 1996 10:49:37 -0400
To: darwin-l@raven.cc.ukans.edu (Darwin List)
From: ahouse@hydra.rose.brandeis.edu (Jeremy C. Ahouse)
Subject: analogy, archival thoughts (part 2 of 2)

A smattering of thoughts on analogs of biological evolution from the
DarwinL archives, continued.

Holsinger, Kent E. (09/20/93) "Re: Culture, evolution and Lamarck"

It strikes me in reading the discussion about the possibility of cultural
evolution that an important distinction is being missed, viz. the
distinction between Darwin's theory of evolution and his theory of
evolution by natural selection.

Darwin's theory of evolution consists of the assertion that all of life's
diversity can be explained as a result of descent with modification from a
a single common ancestor.  Descent with modification is the _only_ process
specified.  It includes both the branching of lineages and transformation
within lineages.  It doesn't specify anything about the mechanism that
produces the branching or the transformation.  In fact, as Ernst Mayr is
fond of pointing out, Darwin mostly ignored the problem of how branching
happens, focusing instead on the mechanics of transformation within

Darwin's theory of natural selection is one mechanism by which evolutionary
change can happen.  It is the idea that types with a superior "fitness"
will be more greatly represented in succeeding generations than those with
a lesser fitness.  It is _not_ the only mechanism of evolutionary change,
nor is it the only mechanism that Darwin proposed.  Darwin envisioned both
the inheritance of acquired characteristics and use & disuse of parts as
important sources of evolutionary change.  We now know that additional
processes, like genetic drift, can lead to evolutionary change in a
population in the absence of natural selection.

Taking this distinction as a given, I can see no reason why we can't talk
about (at least certain forms of) cultural evolution.  It may be difficult
to define the characteristics that are changing, but ask any biological
taxonomist how they define a "character" of an organism and you'll see that
the problem is not unique to culture.  Given that we can identify some
characteristics of a culture, say language practices, and given that those
characteristics change over time it seems likely to me that the changes can
be understood in the broad framework of descent with modification. In fact,
my limited understanding of linguistics suggests that this is precisely the
case, the similarity of Romance languages being due to their common
heritage in classical Latin and the resemblance of Germanic, Romance, and
other languages being due to their common heritage in Indo-European.

There are, of course, interesting ways in which cultural evolution differs
from biological evolution, e.g., greater reticulation among lineages
(especially now) and the potential for inheritance of acquired characters
(what _is_ education, after all?).  These differences, however, have to do
with the _mechanisms_ responsible for producing descent with modification.
Thus, I see cultural evolution as a historical process that will share some
of the features of biological evolution, simply because both are a process
of descent with modification, even though the mechanisms underlying
biological and cultural evolution are very different.

Gerson, Elihu M. (09/23/93) "Heritability and cultural evolution"

On Thu, 23 Sep Richard M. Burian said:
>...At least one standard account of heri-
>tability makes a trait heritable if there is higher [or, for that matter,
>different] correlation between parent and offsping than between random
>members of the parental and offspring generations.

This way of looking at it puts us squarely in the middle of the ancient
correlation-is-not-causaton discussion. Most usages of "heritability" (and
similar terms that I've seen) assume or describe some causal connections
between the characteristics of one generation and those of another, not
just association. Correlations don't tell us anything about the cause of
resemblances between parents and children. Thus, for example, if many
people come down with an illness simultaneously, it may be impossible to
determine from correlational data if the cause is contagion, heritable
susceptibility, exposure to an irritant in the water supply, some
combination of these, or something else altogether.

>   All of this removes one potential obstacle to theories of cultural
>evolution.  But as Holsinger points out, without a serious account of
>mechanism of (cultural) evolutionary change, we don't really have such
>a theory.

True-- and we don't have any plausible theories of cultural evolution.

Moreover, I think using the term "heritability" to refer to both biological
and cultural transmission runs the risk of confusing processes which are
very different in important respects. So I  think we need a different term
for the more general and abstract process which includes heritability on
the one hand (i.e., biological transmission) and heritage or tradition
(i.e., cultural transmission) on the other. And it will also be well to
keep in mind that there are clearly many subkinds of each kind of

I am particularly concerned to avoid arguments like: the contents of the
second draft of my manuscript looks like the first draft of my manuscript,
THEREFORE, keyboards (or maybe word processors) are what shapes the
contents of manuscripts. Arguments of this form, in which lower-level
(often genetic, often psychological) processes are awarded causal efficacy,
and higher level (i.e., organizational, political) processes are ignored,
are extremly common. They can be, and often are, used to justify the most
terrible crimes, including genocide. So I think we should be very very
clear in what we say and what we mean when we are dealing with these
cross-level problems.

I also think it is a good idea to keep in mind that the analysis of
cross-level processes is very complex, and cannot be divided into a "so
much of this, so much of that" way.  Susan Oyama has done an outstanding
analysis of nature-nurture controversies from this perspective: "The
ontogeny of information", Cambridge U Press, 1985.

Holsinger, Kent E. (09/24/93) "Re: Heritability and cultural evolution"

Gerson makes a reasonable point in his reply to Burian.  Using the term
"heritability" to refer to both biological transmission and cultural
transmission runs a risk.  By failing to distinguish between them, on the
basis of the _very_ different mechanisms underlying them, we may
unwittingly make use of evolutionary principles that depend on biological
heredity when trying to understand cultural evolution.

It is important, however, to realize that there will be _some_ commonality
between the processes, no matter how different the mechanisms underlying
the transmission.  Darwin's theory of natural selection, for example,
requires only that offspring resemble their parents, i.e., that there is a
_correlation_ between parental and offspring phenotypes.  It does _not_
require any that any particular mode of transmission underly that
correlation.  In fact, Darwin got the mode of inheritance completely wrong.
To the extent that we can make inferences about the characteristics of an
evolutionary process from the fact of transmission alone, there are bound
to be similarities between biological and cultural evolution.

There are two aspects of cultural transmission that seem to have no
counterpart in biological transmission (that I have been able to think of,
at least).  First, transmission isn't strictly unidirectional, from parent
to offspring, in cultural transmission.  Second, there is considerable
horizontal transmission among individuals.  Take attitudes towards
homosexuality as an example.  (I should note before proceeding that this
entire discussion is based only on my _perception_ of attitudes, not on any
actual data about them. Still, it serves to illustrate the point.)
Attitudes among college-age students towards homosexuality seem clearly
influenced by the environment in which they were raised, i.e., by their
parents (at least in part).  That's classical vertical transmission.
However, students' attitudes are also influenced by the attitudes and
behavior of their peers.  I'm sure we all know of cases where a student who
was adamantly anti-homosexual discovers that a friend is gay and, as a
result, changes his attitude about homsexual behavior.  (Of course, many
times attitudes don't change.)  That's an example of horizontal
transmission.  Similarly, parents sometimes change their attitudes about
homosexual behavior as a result of learning that their son or daughter is
gay/lesbian/bisexual.  That's reverse vertical transmission.

One of the significant questions in my mind is whether the extent of these
alternative modes of transmission is so great that cultural and biological
evolution share few interesting properties or if their extent is limited
enough that there are significant similarities.  Another is whether there
are certain classes of cultural evolution, e.g., linguistic evolution, that
are more similar to biological evolution than others, e.g., changes in
sexual mores.

Mayer, Gregory (09/24/93) "Re: Heritability and cultural evolution"

In his posting of 23 September, Elihu Gerson cautions us against using the
one term heritability for both biological and cultural transmission, for
while they are similar, calling them the same thing might obscure important

I would like to endorse his call for careful use of language and
terminology in discussing these phenomena.  While heritability could be
expanded in meaning to include cultural transmission, it might well be best
to restrict it to its well defined biological meaning.  It is not quite
right to define heritability (in the quantitative genetics sense), as
Richard Burian has, as the correlation of parents and offspring.  It is
indeed true that parent/offspring correlation is a common experimental
design for estimating heritability, but it is not the definition of
heritability, nor the best experimental design.  Heritability is defined as
the proportion of the total variance among individuals (= the phenotypic
variance) that is due to genetic variance among individuals. The phenotypic
variance also has an environmental component, and the genetic variance can
be further decomposed into additive, dominance and interaction components.
More complex analyses of the variance to include further complications such
as, e.g. genotype/environment correlation, are possible.  The key point is
that heritability is not just a correlation among parents and offspring
(which can be similar for all sorts of reasons), but, by definition, a
genetic (in the biological sense) phenomenon.  Quantitative geneticists
design their experiments so as to be able to estimate the various
components, genetic and non-genetic, of the phenotypic variance.  Thus if
we were interested in the heritability of dialect, the first experiment a
quantitative geneticist would think of would be to raise offspring from one
dialect group in a different dialect group.  Experiments much like this
have been done to study song dialects of birds.  If we did such an
experiment with humans, we would find the heritability to be zero: an
American child, raised from birth by a Brazilian family in Brazil, would
speak Portuguese.  The same, I would wager, would be true of dialects.
There is, of course, an interesting cultural transmission of language in
our American/Brazilian gedanken experiment, but it does not involve a
non-zero quantitative genetic heritability.

The second point worth mentioning about this is that heritabilty is an
analysis of _variance_, i.e. of differences among individuals, and says
nothing about mean values.  If we did Richard Burian's study of
heritability within a stable dialect, we would again find zero
heritability.  This time it would not be zero contingently, as in the case
of the American child in Brazil (it _could_ have been the case that
language was inherited genetically in man, as it is, in part, in some
birds; it just happens that it isn't).  It would in this case be zero by
definition, because there would be no differences among individuals, since,
by the setup of the example, they all spoke the same dialect. Again, there
would be an interesting cultural transmission of language, but the
quantitative genetic concept of heritability would not be a useful analytic
tool.  Heritability is a way of relating differences among individuals to
differences in their genes, environment etc.

Those interested in the details of heritability in the quantitative genetic
sense should look at D.S. Falconer, 1989, _Introduction to Quantitative
Genetics_, Longman, Harlow, Essex, and for an account of the limitations of
this approach at R.C. Lewontin, 1974, The analysis of variance and the
analysis of causes, _Amer. J. Hum. Gen._ 26:400-411.

Rindos, Dave (09/26/93) "Evolution Cultural Capacity"

We have been seeing quite a bit on Cultural Evolution here, much of it
quite provocative and well-expressed.  But, I must admit, by and large, the
comments are the usual ones I encounter on this topic.  It seems that one
of the major concerns is whether any THING exists which can be said to
serve as the mode of inheritance and selection for culture.  For example:

> To me, heritable implies genetic or some other biologically determined
> change. Culture is not heritable and the evolution of culture is not better
> than an analogy with organic evolution. What non-genetic systems do you
> have in mind?

I think it is pretty obvious that those of us working in this field take
culture = inheritance system as a given.  Defense of this assumption is not
really that difficult (visit your local anthropology department :{)  ), but
no defense can stand against a principled assumption that heredity *must*
equal genetics and therefore that non-genetic inheritance systems, BY
DEFNITION, cannot evolve.

Howevever, let me note that the evolution of the genetic CAPACITY for
culture provides us with an interesting starting point in understanding the
"naturalness" of the cultural inheritance system, especially for those with
genetic-reductionist tendencies.  One way to look at this is in terms of
what Boyd and Richerson call the "argument from natural origins."  My
version runs more or less along these lines:

Consider that the human *capacity* for culture is the result of GENETIC
evolution which resulted in the various morpological changes characteristic
of our line relevant to this capacity (the normal stuff about larger brain,
etc etc).  Put in rather simple terms, we are cultural *only* because our
genes permit it.  During the evolution of Homo, this genetic capacity for
culture, of course, arose by means of normal, genetic evolution.  The
obvious conclusion to be derived from this observation would be that the
*genetic* capacity for culture evolved because the genes permitting culture
induced fitness.

Consider now that culture is, in its manifestations (as opposed to the
capacity) PURELY PHENOTYPIC -- put in other words, the *specific*
behaviours induced and transmitted through a cultural system are not *in
and of themselves* genetically determined (the obvious example here is
language).  Hence, *any* genetic selection for the cultural capacity had to
the result of selection acting SOLELY upon the mainfestations of that
capacity -- the culturally transmitted behaviours themselves.

Now given the fact that the capacity for culture DID evolve (humans, after
all, are cultural), and given the fact that the establishment of the
cultural capacity required genetic change, and taking into account that it
was not the CAPACITY per se that was selected (recall, the capacity itself
does not exist as a focus for selection, only its manifestations in
specific phenotypic behaviours), we are led to to the following:

During the evolution of the genetic capacity for culture, (at least some)
NON-genetically determined behaviours were of capable of inducing
sufficiently high relative fitness to bring about a populational change in
the genetic makeup of Homo. "Culturing" hominids were more fit than those
whose behaviour was more strictly genetically determined. As a result of
the genetic selection which occured, the human capacity for culture was
established in our line.

Yet the capacity for culture merely means that certain kinds of behaviours
are determined by phenotype/phenotype transmission.  The *specific*
behaviours selected during the evolution of the genetic capacity for
culture were NOT (by definition) genetically *determined*.

But we must recognise that it must have been these very non-genetically
("culturally") determined behaviours which must have been increasing the
fitness of the individuals, else we could never have the evolution of the
genetic capacity to perform them.  The advantages for coding the
determination of certain kinds of behaviours in the phenotypic, cultural,
system were sufficiently great to "drive out" the earlier system which
presumably had a more direct ("hard-wired") genetic determination for

From this logic we can be *certain* that CULTURALLY DETERMINED behaviours
must be subject to selection  -- else we would never have estabished the
GENETIC capacity for culture.  The genetic capacity could evolve only by
means of the selection of the phenotypic, non-genetic, *expressions* of
that capacity.

From this, we can see that the selection of cultural behaviours was
sufficent to bring about what amounts to a revolution in the genetic system
of Homo -- culture replaced genes in the determination of much of the
specifics of behaviour.  Clearly, a lot of genetic fitness can arise from
genes "giving up" control over certain kinds of specific behaviours and
instead having genes (?"meta-genes?") which ALLOW the phenotypic system of
transmission.  It therfore seems pretty reasonable to presume that culture
as *expressed* in specific behaviours was sufficiently fit that it could
bring about this kind of genetic change (else we wouldn't observe

Now to return to the question of "is culture an inheriance system on which
selection can act?"  It seems that selection of cultural behaviours MUST
have occurred in the past -- else we would not have a capacity for culture.
Yet AFTER the cultural capacity had been established WHY should we presume
that the selection would stop?  Certainly feed-back to the genetic system
need no longer be occurring, but so what?

If the selection of purely phenotypic variants (culture in its various
*manifestations*) was sufficently powerful to bring about the GENETIC
changes typical of modern Homo (the genetic *capacity* for culture), then
why should selection not apply to these same traits afterwards?  How in the
world would selection "know" that the cultural capacity had been
established, and why should selection of these phenotypic traits in their
various manifestations, and hence the potential for evolution, cease?

The obvious rejoinder would be that "without the genetic feedback there is
NO evolution."  While this would provide a neat, definitional solution to
the problem, it would miss the very point of what I am saying: In the case
of the evolution of the genetic cultural capacity, the genetic feedback was
merely a CONSEQUENCE of the differing fitness of KINDS of phenotypes (those
which were more or less "hard-wired" in the determination of behaviour).
GENES, per se, were NOT being selected, phenotypes were.  As a consquence
of the relative superiority of phenotypic coding, genetic evolution
occurred.  Those demes capable of phenotypic coding of behaviour and hence
of phenotypic evolutionary processes were more successful over time.

So, at least in a sense, the evolution of the genetic capacity for culture,
was also the evolution of culture as phenotypic inheritance system which
could be subject to selection, and hence which could evolve.  Had
*HEREDITABLE* differences in phenotypically and culturally based fitness
NOT correlated with the more "culturing" demes, then the selection of their
particular genetic system (the hereditablility of which is NOT under
question by even the most ardent doubters of culturally based heredity,
selection and evolution) would never have occurred!  We would not be
cultural animals.

Swann, Philip (10/01/93) "Greenfield on Language"

I recently completed a "continuing commentary" on the following paper:

Greenfield, P. M. (1991) Language, tools and brain: the ontogeny and
phylogeny of hierarchically organized behavior. Behavioral and Brain
Sciences, 14, 531-95

I have submitted this to BBS for publication and placed a copy on our
anonymous ftp server (tecfa.unige.ch, dir /pub/tecfa-working-papers). The
original article and my commentary cover a wide range of issues in the
biology of language. Comments, arguments and such welcome. If you don't
have access to ftp, I can e-mail a copy.

Holsinger, Kent E. (10/01/93) " A parallel between linguistic and
biological evolution?"

Sally Thomason made an interesting observation (something I had always
suspected was true, but wasn't sure about):

> If you cut off contact between two halves of one speech community,
> different changes will occur in the two groups' speech.

Almost the same thing can be said in biology:

If you cut off contact between two halves of a species, different changes
will occur in the two groups.

If you subsitute the phrase "gene flow" for "contact," you have (roughly)
Ernst Mayr's classical description of the way in which allopatric
differentiation occurs.  In fact, I wonder whether both of these principles
are both instances of a single more general principle.  Does it seem
reasonable to conclude that the following is true (I'm not entirely sure.
I'm just throwing it out for discussion.):

1) Define a population as a group of interacting entities that

a) reproduces itself and

b) has the property that newly arisen entities within the population have
characteristics that resemble, but do not necessarily duplicate, the
characteristics of the population.

2) If such a population is divided into two or more groups, so that
individuals in a group interact only with other individuals in their group
and not with individuals in other groups, then

a) the newly produced groups are populations and

b) the characteristics of these populations will tend to diverge from one
another through time.

Actually, it occurs to me that I really have *two* questions about the
above scenario.  First, is it true?  (I think I can make a pretty good
argument for its truth in biology, but I'm not so sure about other fields.)
Second, if it is true, is it interesting?  Does it really tell us
something informative, or is it so broad and general as to be

Langdon, John (10/01/93) "Re: A parallel between linguistic and biological

> > If you cut off contact between two halves of one speech community,
> > different changes will occur in the two groups' speech.
> Almost the same thing can be said in biology:

In my perspective, what species and languages have in common is that they
are both properties held by populations and not individuals. A species
should not be considered adequately defined by a single individual
(although of necessity, that is where taxonomists often have to begin).
Language is not language unless it is used to communicate among
individuals. Therefore when the population is divided and becomes two
populations, its property (e.g. language) also becomes two independent
entities (two languages). Whether or not these two populations or two
languages are different from one another is best answerable in retrospect
after divergence has become more visible.

> 1) Define a population as a group of interacting entities that
>    a) reproduces itself and
>    b) has the property that newly arisen entities within the population
>       have characteristics that resemble, but do not necessarily duplicate,
>       the characteristics of the population.
> 2) If such a population is divided into two or more groups, so that
> individuals in a group interact only with other individuals in their group
> and not with individuals in other groups, then
>    a) the newly produced groups are populations and
>    b) the characteristics of these populations will tend to diverge from
>       one another through time.

This is true if and only if we assume the changes between generations
(under 1b above) will not be the same in both groups. It is easy to see why
these are different in both species and languages-- variation within
populations and some degree of randomness of changes. However, this
assumption probably should be written into the model above.

> Second, if it is true, is it interesting?  Does it really tell us something
> informative, or is it so broad and general as to be uninformative?

Probably it is not informative for biologists and linguists who already
understood this principle. But perhaps there are other systems that we have
not though of as belonging to this class-- e.g. academic "schools" of

Gale, George (10/01/93) "Biological and linguistic change"

Picard, Marc wrote to me "In regular sound change, expediency is the name
of the game.  The human vocal apparatus prefers certain combinations of
sounds, and that's what speakers unconsciously strive for."

I'd like to focus in on the "prefer". Do you mean that certain sound
sequences are, in some sense, more difficult than others? I assume that you
do mean this, and would like some further sense of what the dfficulty might
consist in. For example, in terms of the physical energy required to utter
certain sequences, is there a preference for minima? Or, again to speak
physically (I'm a philosopher of physics, after all!), is the path length
of the sequence of motions in the cords (or other parts of the
'instrument') a minima--a preference? Or, is it just plain DIFFICULT to
play the sequence, as, by analogy, certain chords would be difficult to
finger on a guitar? Perhaps I'm being too literal here. Maybe by "prefer"
Marc meant an esthetic evaluation, as in, the ear prefers to hear certain
sounds. That would certainly be plausible, since, for example, the overall
'sound' of e.g., German is quite different from the overall 'sound' of
e.g., French.

Picard, Marc (10/01/93) "Biological and linguistic change"

First, let me state that, to my knowledge, no phonologist has ever
attributed any sound change to a desire for euphony or acoustic esthetics
or whatever. Second, instead of using the terms 'easy' and 'difficult'in
relation to spech sounds and their combinations - something which has
proven to be notoriously difficult to measure or quantify in any useful
way, as far as I am aware - I think it is much more productive to look at
ASSIMILATION, which is the type of sound change I was discussing, as an
attempt to get from here to there (an UNCONSCIOUS attempt, obviously) by
the shortest possible route, on onehand, and by getting ready for what's
coming next as soon as possible, on the other. The problem is that speakers
can't see beyond their own noses, so to speak, so that having taken a
shortcut here, they will often create a situation that is less than ideal,
and which will also have a tendency to be changed.

Here is a simple case in point, an example of which could most probably be
found in the history of any language. Unstressed vowels have a tendency to
be 'slurred' (laxed/reduced to schwa) and then deleted. More often than
not, this leads to the buildup of consonant clusters which will almost beg
to be reduced, leading to another change. These can pile up, as when Latin
AUGUSTUM wound up as French /u/ (written AOUT with a circumflex on the U
which indicates that an /s/ used to follow, cf. the family name DAOUST, and
pronouncedas a short English 'oo').



<35:85>From ddennett@diamond.tufts.edu Tue Jul 23 16:37:19 1996

Date: Tue, 23 Jul 1996 17:37:17 -0400 (EDT)
From: Daniel Dennett <ddennett@diamond.tufts.edu>
To: darwin-l@raven.cc.ukans.edu
Subject: Re: Reviews of Dennett

Here's my reply to Orr, mentioned by Phillip Johnson. It will appear in
BOSTON REVIEW (where Orr's second blast appeared in June) in September.

Daniel Dennett

From ddennett@diamond.tufts.edu Tue Jul 23 16:39:24 1996
Date: Tue, 23 Jul 1996 17:35:40 -0400 (EDT)
From: Daniel Dennett <ddennett@diamond.tufts.edu>
To: Phillip E Johnson <philjohn@uclink.berkeley.edu>
Subject: Reply to Orr (fwd)

Daniel C. Dennett
                       One Fan's Pratfalls

A Reply to  H. Allen Orr's "Dennett's Strange Idea," Boston
Review, Summer, 1996.

     When Professor Orr published his hostile review of Darwin's
Dangerous Idea in the biology journal, Evolution, last February,
I was not pleased. His review was full of falsehoods and
misconstruals, but I had no recourse; that journal, like most
academic journals, does not permit authors to respond to reviews.
Luckily for me, Orr has been so eager to warn the world of my
errors that he has restated his attack, with embellishments, in
the Boston Review, which has invited me to respond. Months have
passed, the damage has been done, but at least I get to set the
record straight.

    I am grateful to Orr for embellishing his attack for the
benefit of his lay readers, since these additions vividly expose
his own errors and confusions, which were somewhat masked in the
more professional version. In what follows I will concentrate on
his criticisms of my understanding of his field: biology. I trust
the readers of the Boston Review to have seen the flaws in his
philosophical criticisms without my help, but a non-biologist
might well suspect that, on his home ground, Orr's criticisms are
as authoritative and devastating as he makes them out to be. They
are not.

     Before getting to the meat of his criticism, Orr warns
readers that my book is

     marred with factual errors, some scientific and some
     historical. Population genetic theory, for instance, does
     not prove that evolution by random change is faster than
     evolution by natural selection, as Dennett claims.

I did indeed misspeak (p.126), but the result was ambiguity, not
error.  The issue is complicated: it depends on whether you're
measuring the (average) speed of departure from a starting point
in genetic space, or the speed of attainment of some particular
evolutionary product. I meant the former, as the context ought to
have made clear (I was in the process of observing that there has
been plenty of time in evolutionary history for the sheer genomic
diversity observed to accumulate).  But I did couch my claim in
terms that permitted Orr to put the false reading on it. Score
one half point for Orr. He goes on:

     And it was Darwin's theory of sexual, not natural, selection
     that he called an 'awful stretcher.'

I made no such claim. I entitled a chapter section "Natural
Selection--an Awful Stretcher." The vivid epithet comes from
Darwin, but it was I who applied it to natural selection. Orr,
having already stretched too far in his effort to find a
historical error to impute to me, topples over when he tries to
elaborate: "Darwin branding natural selection a stretcher is
about as plausible as Chomsky branding Universal Grammar a
howler."  What? Darwin branded sexual selection an awful
stretcher in the very act of endorsing it--it is, after all, a
special kind of natural selection, not an alternative! Here's
what Darwin said (as I noted, when I introduced the term): "It is
an awful stretcher to believe that a peacock's tail was thus
formed; but, believing it, I believe in the same principle
somewhat modified applied to man." Surely Darwin would have
agreed, if asked, that natural selection was another awful
stretcher he believed in. Orr's remark about Chomsky makes it
appear that he thinks Darwin was dismissing sexual selection when
he called it an awful stretcher, but I expect he knows better and
simply got carried away by his desire to rub it in about my non-
existent error.

     These are the only two "factual errors" he comes up with,
and he judiciously grants them the status of "peccadilloes."
There are some factual errors in my book that others have pointed
out, but since Orr does not brandish any of them in his essay, I
think we can conclude that they eluded his scrutiny. Let's turn,
then, to his main criticisms about my book's supposed deep
misunderstandings of biology.

     Orr concentrates on my criticism of Gould and Lewontin's
famous attack on adaptationism, "The spandrels of San Marco and
the Panglossian paradigm." Evolution--what Darwin called "descent
with modification"--is an uncontroversial fact, as secure as any
in science, but there is still controversy among biologists about
just how many of these facts about evolution are to be explained
by citing natural selection, the mechanism Darwin proposed as the
most important force shaping evolution. To see what the issue is,
consider the popular retort of software engineers when somebody
finds a flaw in their program: "It isn't a bug, it's a feature."
In other words, it's supposed to be that way; it was designed
to work like that. Now is everything observable in the biosphere
a "feature," an "adaptation" as an evolutionary biologist would
call it?  Are there no bugs, no undesigned bits, no historical
accidents? Of course there are. Everybody agrees on that.
Everybody does not agree on how important these non-adaptations
are; the greater the role you give to natural selection, the more
"adaptationist" you are, and the Gould/Lewontin essay was an
attempt to swing opinion the other way.

     Orr begins by usefully perpetuating some of the
misunderstandings I exposed in my discussion of Gould and
Lewontin's central architectural metaphor for a non-feature: a
"spandrel"--one of the curving wedges of masonry that serve as
the transition from the domes of the Basilica di San Marco in
Venice to the arches that hold them up. (I find this useful
because some critics have wondered if any biologists have
actually been confused on this score; my answer is yes--see,
e.g., H. Allen Orr.) This is what he says:

     Although spandrels are often decked out with mosaics, no one
     would seriously argue that spandrels are there because they
     provide such swell surfaces for mosaics. Instead, spandrels
     are there because they have to be--they are, it turns out,
     the inevitable by-product of putting a dome on rounded

"Inevitable by-product"? This is either flat false or true but
irrelevant. If by "spandrel" Gould and Lewontin mean the
particular structure used in San Marco (properly called a
pendentive) then what they say is false; pendentives are one of
many options, but they are probably the optimal engineering
solution to the problem of supporting the dome--what I would call
a Forced Move. In this sense, spandrels (pendentives) are
adaptations par excellence. If, on the other hand, Gould and
Lewontin mean by "spandrel" just "whatever you put in that place
between the dome and the arches," then spandrels are trivially
inevitable--you have to put something there. Gould himself has
recently opted for this reading, but as I had already pointed
out in my book, p272-3, this interpretation also disqualifies
spandrels for their role as lead metaphor in Gould and Lewontin's
biological argument. In this sense, architectural constraints
present a problem, not a solution, in biology as much as in
building, and that is where natural selection comes in.

     This has been much discussed recently, and the architectural
engineer Robert Mark, in a fascinating  article in the July issue
of American Scientist, shows that my own amateur engineering (and
architectural history) led me to underestimate the structural
requirements for handling the forces of putting a large dome on
arches. The pendentives are in fact not just aesthetic
adaptations, as I had claimed, but also structural adaptations.
So the San Marco "spandrels" are a doubly poor choice for
eponymous non-adaptations. The mosaics on the pendentives are
aesthetic design choices enabled by prior structural design
choices. An example of one adaptation exploiting a prior
adaptation hardly strikes a telling blow against adaptationism.

     But why are we quibbling about these fine points of
architectural history? Why, indeed, do I pay such obsessive
attention to Gould and Lewontin's attack on adaptationism? Orr
expresses his bafflement.

     Why, after all, should a man hoping to export Darwinism from
     biology be so obsessed with defending the minutiae of
     adaptive storytelling within biology? I would not think the
     legitimacy of, say, cultural Darwinism hangs critically on
     whether selection is very important in biological evolution
     (as everyone, including Gould and Lewontin, believe) or is
     almost exclusively important (as Dennett believes).

     First, Orr strains to create a gulf that does not exist
between me and the run of biologists. What, we may ask, is the
difference between "very important" and "almost exclusively
important"--the presumably dissenting view he attributes to me?
It is Gould and Lewontin, in fact, who have had trouble
clarifying their charge. Everybody agrees, as Orr says, that
selection is very important, so just what are Gould and Lewontin
saying? That it is not as important as some people think? If that
had been their message, I would agree with John Maynard Smith
that their paper was "on the whole, welcome." Orr quotes this
verdict with approval, and so did I (p278), noting, however, that
this was not their message--or at least it has not been Gould's
version of their message.

     I think Orr's professed perplexity must be disingenuous. I
make it crystal clear why I have to go to all this trouble
clarifying these minutiae: Gould has persistently misrepresented
the import of the Gould/Lewontin paper outside biology, and many
have been taken in. My unshirkable task was to show the non-
biologists that they have been seriously misled by Gould about
this. In my book I list four propositions that are widely
believed by non-biologists to have been demonstrated by Gould.
The first two are relevant here:

     If you believe:

     (1) that adaptationism has been refuted or relegated to a
     minor role in evolutionary biology, or
     (2) that since adaptationism is 'the central intellectual
     flaw of sociobiology' (Gould, 1993a, p.319), sociobiology
     has been utterly discredited as a scientific discipline. . .

     then what you believe is a falsehood. (p.265)

Well, are these truths or falsehoods? They are widely believed.
Many non-biologists are under the weird misapprehension, thanks
to Gould's rhetoric, that one is under no obligation to provide
an adaptive account of the evolution of a complex competence or
organ--such as human language. In some misguided quarters,
indeed, adaptationist explanations of anything are automatically
suspect! For more than a year before the publication of my book
and on several occasions since then, I have repeatedly requested
that he clarify his position on these propositions. Steve Gould
is undeniably a Great Communicator. If these propositions are not
what he meant, if over-eager readers have misunderstood him, he
should find it both obligatory and easy to correct these
widespread misapprehensions. If he meant them, he should either
defend them against my charge of falsehood, or concede that he
has misled his readers. He has not accepted my invitation to
clarify his position, so it falls to me to explain to the world,
at whatever length it takes, why these are not the take-home
messages from Gould and Lewontin's article.

     The centerpiece of Orr's critique of my defense of
adaptationism is his feigned astonishment that I omit any
discussion of Motoo Kimura's neutral theory, "the most serious
and famous of all challenges to selectionist story-telling." Here
he plays a cute rhetorical trick: Boy oh boy, Dennett must be
really out of it to have overlooked Kimura's work! Why on earth
did he omit this? Was it because he never heard of it? Naw. Or
because  Kimura's book was too difficult for him to read? Naw. Or
because he "doesn't want to let the cat out of the bag" about the
fact that biologists have found out that "non-Darwinian"
evolution is common? Naw. Having relieved himself of these snide
but indefensible suggestions--as he himself so generously
acknowledges--he arrives at the obvious truth: "Dennett is
interested in Design . . . and the neutralist/selectionist
controversy has nothing to say here." Right. It wasn't relevant.
Kimura's theory is about typographical change, visible at the
molecular level of the genome. As Orr says, "most evolution at
the molecular level [my emphasis] is not caused by natural
selection, but by 'genetic drift'." Before Kimura, theorists
hugely underestimated the possible role of the accumulation of
random mutations that are (as Orr notes) functionally equivalent.
Kimura's work is wonderful, surprising, and still controversial;
it claims (among other things) that the diversity observed at the
molecular level could be much more the result of random genetic
drift than many theorists--"selectionists"--had thought, but this
aspect of selectionism has little or nothing to do with
adaptationism, which is why I left it out. Oh, I could have had
some fun with the fact that there are indeed some biologists--
Gould and Lewontin come to mind--who have often suggested to the
lay public that Kimura's neutral theory is a rival to natural
selection as an account of morphologic evolution (the shaping of
complex phenotypic features), but as Orr as much as admits, this
is not taken seriously among biologists.

     From all Orr's hooting one might get the impression, by the
way, that I had nothing to say on these topics in my book, but in
fact, I discuss the role of random genetic drift (p.125-6) and
the ubiquitous possibility of typographically different but
functionally equivalent genetic recipes for proteins (pp195-6,
p287). Where Orr mentions functionally irrelevant differences in
varieties of hemoglobin, I mention functionally irrelevant
differences in lysozyme. Same points made, right down the line.
In fact I also make all the other points about adaptation he goes
on to explain for his lay readers, saying "Dennett never
confronts these legitimate worries." (All of them? Yes. If you
want to test my claim, you can go back and match page 30 of Orr's
review with my pages 199, 248-249; I'll spare readers the tedious

     One last point about Orr's understanding of central concepts
in his own field before we turn briefly to the evolution of
culture. I say that natural selection is an algorithmic process,
and hence is "substrate neutral"--it doesn't matter what material
the algorithm is executed in, so long as the recipe is followed.
Orr says, correctly,

     This substrate neutrality argument is supremely important to
     Dennett. It--and nothing else--explains why selection can be
     lifted from its historical base in biology. It is what makes
     Darwinism so dangerous.

He goes on: "But Dennett slips here." It is Orr who has slipped,
falling flat on his face with his proposed counterexample to my
claim that natural selection is a substrate neutral process:
"blending inheritance." Orr says:

     Evolution would quickly grind to a halt, for instance, if
     inheritance were blending, not particulate. With blending
     inheritance, the genetic material from two parents
     seamlessly blends together like different colored paints.
     With particulate Mendelian inheritance, genes from Mom and
     Dad remain forever distinct in Junior. This substrate
     problem [sic] was so acute that turn-of-the-century
     biologists--all fans of blending inheritance--concluded that
     Darwinism just can't work. Modern evolutionary genetics was
     born in 1930 when Sir Ronald Fisher cracked this problem:
     Population genetics shows that particulate Mendelian
     inheritance saves the day. It is just the kind of substrate
     [sic] needed for evolution by natural selection to work.

Orr is right that Mendel saved the day for Darwin (a point of
history I discuss in somewhat greater detail in my book), but
this was a triumph for substrate neutrality! Mendel--and Fisher,
too, for that matter--was clueless about what the substrate was.
(It's DNA, of course, but that wasn't discovered until 1953, by
Crick and Watson.) Mendelian genes are a paradigm case of
substrate neutrality; they are pure data structures, whose
material composition is irrelevant just so long as they obey the
combinatorial rules Mendel laid down. The field of population
genetics thrives to this day in almost complete independence of
any concern with the nitty-gritty biochemistry of the substrate--
just the way software engineering is conducted by people who need
know little about the electronics or physics of their silicon
substrate. The problem with blending inheritance is the code, not
the substrate; it would be just as hopeless a system to use in
evolutionary software engineering as it would be in carbon-based
biological evolution.

     Orr has apparently missed this fundamental point about the
abstractness of evolutionary theory, and having missed it, he
compounds his confusions when he turns to my exploitation of
Richard Dawkins' concept of memes in defense of a Darwinian
theory of cultural evolution. His "basic problem" with any
attempt at such a theory is that we are "very ignorant of how
humans hold ideas in their heads. . .  So how can we possibly
conclude that the process 'must be' Darwinian?" Well, population
geneticists were very ignorant of how organisms held genes in
their bodies until recently, but this did not stop Fisher and his
colleagues from establishing (in a substrate neutral way) the
soundness of the modern synthesis, did it? Orr comes close to
contradicting himself here, and doesn't notice.

     But then his whole discussion of memes is inattentive to
detail. Orr says: "the fitness of memes is strangely
tautological. While we can often point to ecological reasons why
certain genes are fitter than others, a meme is deemed 'fit' only
because it is common." This is obviously false, belied by many of
the examples discussed in my book. He goes on: "'Elvis is alive'
is certainly a fit meme, but it is neither true nor helpful." Has
he been paying attention at all? This independence of meme
fitness from truth and utility (to us) is the single most
important feature of the meme's-eye view of cultural evolution.
He continues: "Last, Dennett confesses [sic] that memes often
show a Lamarckian, not Darwinian, style of evolution, in that
acquired traits get passed on," ignoring the fact that I explain
why the "charge" that cultural evolution is Lamarckian misses the
mark entirely (p355).

     Given this obliviousness, his "astonishment" that I would
point out how difficult--and maybe impossible--it will be to
establish a predictively powerful science of memetics counts for
little or nothing. There are many uncontroversially evolutionary
phenomena in biology that also defy formal scientific inquiry by
being either computationally intractable or bereft of accessible
data. Ancient memes, like ancient genes for soft body parts,
leave almost no fossil traces. The genetic contributions to many
complex abilities in many species are both practically
unresearchable and utterly indubitable. For instance, does Orr
doubt that there is an evolutionary account--probably forever
inaccessible, alas--of the nest-building behaviors in birds? He
interprets my cautious discussion of the prospects for memetics
as "backing off" from stronger claims about memes, but this
retreat is a figment of his imagination. (Aficionados will
recognize this trick as an instance of the Gould two-step,
exposed by me several years ago in the New York Review of Books.)

     Orr's other criticisms of memes follow the same pattern as
his earlier criticisms of my biology. Once again, he reiterates
points I make myself about important problems to be solved, but
he treats these problems as clearly insoluble, without giving any
arguments or acknowledging that he is following me. He claims
that I have overlooked--or deliberately suppressed--trenchant
criticisms of memetics from within biology, but he doesn't
mention any. I deal with all the criticisms that I have
encountered in the literature. If he knows of others, he should
have referred to them specifically.

     One final point: Orr's failure to understand substrate
neutrality leads him to miss the otherwise obvious point that in
any theoretical analysis of the evolution of a cultural
phenomenon, say, morality, there can be complex interplay between
genetic and memetic sources of design; substrate neutrality means
that the work of evolution can be accomplished in either medium
(at different rates, under the same or different selection
pressures) and combined in the final product. He apparently
thinks that any account of the evolution of morality must either
be all genetic or all cultural. He asks, at one point: "Is it
obvious that genetic changes are required for such a thing? [No.
It is false.] Where are Dennett's trusty memes when we need them?
[Right under his nose.]" Orr might want to look at some of the
literature I cited on these topics, such as the recent
theoretical work by Philip Kitcher, an alumnus of Lewontin's lab.
It's substrate neutral, all the way.

     I will not comment on Orr's critical treatment of the more
purely philosophical parts of my book, beyond noting that the
charitable interpretation would be that he doesn't understand the
difference between serious criticism and the mug's game of
quoting out of context. I suppose I must cite at least one
instance, so as not to leave unsubstantiated criticisms floating
in the air, as he has done: those who are curious may consider as
exhibit A his abuse of my discussion of "bait-and-switch" in
evolutionary theory.

     One does not lightly undertake the task of dislodging
heroes from their pedestals so that their ideas can be critically
assessed in the same arena with the ideas of ordinary mortals. So
I expected to be treated fairly roughly by their fans, especially
in their home town. Gould and Lewontin and Chomsky have so far
all chosen to leave the counter-attack to others, my criticisms
being too far beneath their notice, one gathers, to merit any
detailed public response. The attacks I have seen to date--of
which Orr's is the best, by the way--have been long on sneering
and short on substance. It's been surprisingly easy to take,
since my task has been far from thankless. Indeed, the thanks I
have been receiving from biologists around the world has been
most gratifying.


<35:86>From DARWIN@iris.uncg.edu Wed Jul 24 00:05:51 1996

Date: Wed, 24 Jul 1996 01:05:43 -0500 (EST)
From: DARWIN@iris.uncg.edu
Subject: July 24 -- Today in the Historical Sciences
To: darwin-l@ukanaix.cc.ukans.edu
Organization: University of NC at Greensboro


1794: CHRISTIAN HEINRICH PANDER is born at Riga, Latvia. Pander will
enter the University of Dorpat in 1812, where will study natural history
and medicine.  He will continue his studies at the Universities of Berlin,
Gottingen, and Wurzburg, and will receive his medical degree from Wurzburg
in 1817.  A student of the great embryologists Karl Ernst von Baer and Ignaz
Dollinger, Pander will be best remembered for his research on the development
of the chick.  He will spend the greater part of his career, however, pursuing
investigations in geology and paleontology, and among his more important works
will be _Beitrage zur Geognosie des russischen Reichs_ (St. Petersburg, 1830),
and _Monographie der Fossilen Fische des silurischen Systems der Russisch-
Baltischen Gouvernements_ (St. Petersburg, 1856).

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 listserv@raven.cc.ukans.edu or connect to
the Darwin-L Web Server (http://rjohara.uncg.edu) for more information.


<35:87>From mew1@siu.edu Tue Jul 23 21:30:41 1996

Date: Tue, 23 Jul 1996 21:28:06 -0500
To: darwin-l@ukanaix.cc.ukans.edu
From: "Margaret E. Winters" <mew1@siu.edu>
Subject: time and space

I'd like to second the recommendation of George Lakoff's and Mark Johnson's
_Metaphors We Live By_ for an exploration of time being grasped spatially.
I also would like to recommend (and I know I have provided this reference to
the list before) Stephen Jay Gould's _Time's Cycle, Time's Arrow_ for images
of time including Lyell's deep time and those of other 19th century writers.


Margaret E. Winters
Associate Vice Chancellor for Academic Affairs (Budget and Personnel)
Southern Illinois University at Carbondale
Carbondale, IL, 62901-4517
Phone:  (618) 549-0106 (Home); (618) 536-5535 (Office)
Fax:  (618) 453-3340


<35:88>From YTL@vms.huji.ac.il Wed Jul 24 00:59:01 1996

Date: Wed,  24 Jul 96 8:57 +0200
From: <YTL@vms.huji.ac.il>
To: darwin-l@ukanaix.cc.ukans.edu
Subject: Time and Historians

I'm an historian of medieval science and philosophy, who was intrigued by
the notion of a listserv devoted to the *historical sciences*; and I enjoy
the postings, which have a higher signal-to-noise ratio than those on any
other list to which I subscribe.

As to the question of how much space to give each period, or chapter:
consider the following remarks of the late Otto Neugebaer. In true classical
and medieval tradition, he divided his monumental History of Ancient
Mathematical Astronomy (3 vols.) into five *books*. Book III, devoted to
Egypt, gets about ten pages. Neugebauer introduces it as follows (p. 559):

Egypt has no place in a work on the history of mathematical astronomy.
Nevertheless I devote a separate *book* to the subject in order to draw
the reader's attention to its insignificance which cannot be too strongly
emphasized in comparison with Babylonian and Greek contribution to the
development of scientific astronomy.

Strong stuff. Nevertheless, it draws attention to another important point--it
is the professional and moral responsibility of the historian to make a
decision concerning the relative emphasis to give each chapter, phase, period,
whatever, of the subject he is dealing with. I don't think the solution lies
in any simple ratio of years covered/pages in the book.

Since this issue is intimately connected with another--the emphasis given in
Western or European writings to Western or European traditions, etc., let me
make one more remark--and tie this posting into another issue that has come
up, namely the work of Thomas Kuhn, who passed away only recently.

IMHO, the way to give the contributions of other, non-western traditions to
the human scientific enterprise their due recognition is not simple to
allocate *x* more pages to their efforts in the various encyclopaediae, but
to attempt to fit the evolution of their scientific cultures into paradigms
such as those of Kuhn--to try to see if what Kuhn says applies to all human
science, or just modern European science. (All this, of course, to the extent
that his ideas are acceptable at all). I have tried ever so gingerly to do
this in respect to the work of Moses Maimonides, who worked in Egypt, in the
second half of the twelfth century (a few pages of an article I published
in Israel Oriental Studies, vol 13, 1993, contain some very brief remarks).

In short, I reject the two extremes--the mushy fuzzy all things are just
constructs, etc.; and the attempt to avoid judgment by dry criteria; and I
call upon historians (who are not strictly speaking *scientists*) to exercise
judgment, explain their decitions, and take responsibility for their writings.

Tzvi Langermann
Institute of Microfilmed Hebrew Manuscripts
Jewish National and University Library
Jerusalem, Israel


<35:89>From mycol1@unm.edu Wed Jul 24 10:38:46 1996

Date: Wed, 24 Jul 1996 09:38:43 -0600 (MDT)
From: Bryant <mycol1@unm.edu>
To: darwin-l@raven.cc.ukans.edu
Cc: Phillip E Johnson <philjohn@uclink.berkeley.edu>
Subject: Re: Reply to Orr (fwd)

On Tue, 23 Jul 1996, Daniel Dennett wrote:

> Gould has persistently misrepresented
> the import of the Gould/Lewontin paper outside biology, and many
> have been taken in.

Indeed. The majority of the humanities and even social science professors
with whom I have discussed the adaptationist program have pointed to Gould's
popular books as proof positive that biologists have "rejected" the primacy
of natural selection in the evolutionary process. This, of course, is
simply not true.

While Gould may not have meant to have conveyed this naive vision of
evolutionary science to non-scientists, he has very effectively done so!

Bryant Furlow
UNM Biology


<35:90>From mayerg@cs.uwp.edu Wed Jul 24 12:31:04 1996

Date: Wed, 24 Jul 1996 12:31:01 -0500 (CDT)
From: Gregory Mayer <mayerg@cs.uwp.edu>
Subject: RE: space and time
To: darwin-l@raven.cc.ukans.edu

I am not a geographer, so can only report tidbits that I've run across
without references, but I believe the "Peters' projection" is not much
thought of by cartographers.  The projection is equal-area, which
apparently was Peters' intent, but it is very shape distorting.  The
easiest way to see this in 2 dimensions (i.e. on paper) is to compare a
photograph of the earth from space to the projection.  Better yet, look at
a globe, and see the 3 dimensions.  There are other equal or near equal
area projections that do not distort shape as much.  Also, the projection
was devised by someone else earlier, but not used much other than by

The sources for this are various cartography books I've flipped through;
the only author I can recall is John Campbell, but I'm not sure it was in
his book that I got this information.  The US Geological Survey also puts
out booklets that discuss the merits of various projections to accompany
its map series.

Gregory C. Mayer


<35:91>From hins0012@gold.tc.umn.edu Wed Jul 24 18:06:30 1996

From: "Eric Hinsdale" <hins0012@gold.tc.umn.edu>
Reply-To: "Eric Hinsdale" <hins0012@gold.tc.umn.edu>
To: darwin-l@raven.cc.ukans.edu
Subject: humanities, social sciences, and Gould
Date: Wed, 24 Jul 96 18:06:26 -0500

Bryant Furlow writes:

> Indeed. The majority of the humanities and even social science professors
> with whom I have discussed the adaptationist program have pointed to Gould's
> popular books as proof positive that biologists have "rejected" the primacy
> of natural selection in the evolutionary process. This, of course, is
> simply not true.
> While Gould may not have meant to have conveyed this naive vision of
> evolutionary science to non-scientists, he has very effectively done so!

A couple of months ago I tried unsuccessfully to locate published articles in
which humanities or social science professors cite Gould in the manner Bryant
Furlow mentions.  Either because my search was not thorough enough or because
these comments are restricted to informal conversation, I was unsuccessful.
Can anyone cite some specific, published examples of humanists or social
scientists who state on Gould's authority that biologists have abandoned
natural selection as a major force in evolution?


Eric Hinsdale
Program in the History of Science and Technology
University of Minnesota


<35:92>From DARWIN@iris.uncg.edu Fri Jul 26 00:01:45 1996

Date: Fri, 26 Jul 1996 01:00:01 -0500 (EST)
From: DARWIN@iris.uncg.edu
Subject: CFP: Archeological Method and Theory (fwd from arch-theory)
To: darwin-l@ukanaix.cc.ukans.edu
Organization: University of NC at Greensboro

--begin forwarded message--------------

Date: Wed, 24 Jul 1996 13:36:12 -0700
From: Michael/Annette Schiffer <schiffer@gas.uug.arizona.edu>
Subject: Journal of Archaeological Method and Theory:  call for submissions
To: arch-theory@mailbase.ac.uk
Organization: University of Arizona

Dear Friends and Colleagues:
        This note is to let you know that I am eager to receive proposals
for papers for the Journal of Archaeological Method and Theory.
        Papers may be in any of several genres (1) topical syntheses,
which integrate the state of the art in a particular subject area, (2)
history of a topic in method or theory, (3) a paper that contributes
new method or theory (on the "cutting edge"), and (4) a particularly
noteworthy application of a method or theory.  And, of course, I am
happy to consider papers that may not fall comfortably into any of the
preceding categories.
        Journal of Archaeological Method and Theory welcomes papers
regardless of theoretical orientation.
        If you have a paper in hand or a paper proposal, please contact me
and I can provide you with details of the submission process.
        I look forward to hearing from you.

                        Michael Brian Schiffer

P.S. My summer phone and mailing address:  520-367-1438; POB 404,
Pinetop, Arizona.

--end forwarded message----------------


<35:93>From DARWIN@iris.uncg.edu Fri Jul 26 00:05:37 1996

Date: Fri, 26 Jul 1996 01:05:33 -0500 (EST)
From: DARWIN@iris.uncg.edu
Subject: Conference on computers and history (fwd from Humanist)
To: darwin-l@ukanaix.cc.ukans.edu
Organization: University of NC at Greensboro

--begin forwarded message--------------

Date: Wed, 24 Jul 1996 21:44:31 +0100 (BST)
From: WILLARD MCCARTY <willard.mccarty@kcl.ac.uk>
Subject: 10.0178 computers & history conference
To: Humanist Discussion Group <humanist@lists.Princeton.EDU>

              Humanist Discussion Group, Vol. 10, No. 178.
    Center for Electronic Texts in the Humanities (Princeton/Rutgers)
      Centre for Computing in the Humanities, King's College London
        Information at http://www.princeton.edu/~mccarty/humanist/

  [1]   From: Dennis Trinkle <Dtrinkle@iquest.NET>                (60)
        Subject: Conference Announcement

University of Cincinnati
May 2-3, 1997

Panel and paper proposals are now being solicited for the
inaugural Cincinnati Symposium on Computers and History, which
will be held at the University of Cincinnati on May 2-3, 1997.
The theme for this year's conference will be "The Future of
History in the Electronic Age."  The goal of the conference is to
bring together professionals from a wide range of history-related
areas to discuss the benefits and problems presented by computer
technology.  Professors, K-12 teachers, librarians, publishers,
editors, archivists, students and all other history professionals
are encouraged to participate.  Many opportunities for
interdisciplinary exchange will be provided, and panel and paper
proposals on any topics relating to history in the electronic age
are encouraged.  Prizes will be awarded for the best papers by a
graduate student, untenured professor, and non-university
affiliated presenter.  All papers will also be considered for
publication in a volume of essays selected from conference
sessions.  Some suggested themes include:

-The future of historical journals in the electronic age.
-How computers are changing the face of historical editing
-Publishing and the Information Superhighway: Problems and opportunities.
-Computers in the classroom.
-Multimedia Teaching Strategies for K-12 teachers.
-Authoring World Wide Web Pages.
-Using the World Wide Web as a teaching tool.
-The future of book reviews in the electronic age.
-Employing database and statistical software in historical research.
-Using the Internet for job, fellowship, and grant research.
-The changing face of libraries.
-Introducing computer training into the graduate curriculum.
-New opportunities for local history.
-Computer uses for graduate students.
-The on-line museum--A new exhibition space.
-0n-line courses and distance learning.
-Computers and historical research.
-Using the Internet for scholarly communication and collaboration.

Full panels can be composed of three 30 minute papers, four 20
minute papers, or a round table format.  All panels should
include a chair, and three and four paper panels are encouraged
to include a commentator.  Proposals must include a 200 word
abstract for each paper and a one paragraph vita for each
participant. Please be sure to indicate which member of the panel
will serve as the contact person and provide their name, address,
and phone number.


Please direct all correspondence to:
Cincinnati Symposium on Computers and History, Department of
History, University of Cincinnati, Cincinnati, OH 45220-0373.

E-mail: Trinklds@uc.edu

--end forwarded message----------------


<35:94>From levy@cems.umn.edu Thu Jul 25 09:36:39 1996

Date: Thu, 25 Jul 1996 09:36:34 -0500 (CDT)
From: Roger Levy <levy@cems.umn.edu>
To: darwin-l@raven.cc.ukans.edu
Cc: wbaxter@umich.edu
Subject: Space and time, in language

Here's a very straightforward example of how the human mind's analogies
between space and time is dependent on language.
  In English, we draw analogies between motion in space and motion in
time.  We literally say "the future lies ahead," and "looking backward"
means "considering our past."  If we imagine ourselves physically
traveling through time during our lives, we normally "look to the future"
and, I propose, see ourselves as walking "forward" in time.  We try to
put troublesome events in the past "behind us," so that the path before
us (in the future) is unobstructed.
  The Chinese also equate space and time, but in a different way.  In
Chinese, the same character ("qian" second tone in HanYu PinYin; "mae" in
Japanese) is used both for "front" and "forward" in space, AND "earlier"
in time.  Similarly, the antonym character ("hou" fourth tone in Mandarin;
"ushiro" and "ato" in Japanese) means both "behind" and "later".  This
gave me immense trouble when I was starting to learn Mandarin, because it
is the reverse of the English relationship!
  Now, the analogy between time and space is pretty pervasive in all
cultures that I know; and I think it's amazing that the analogies are
inverse between languages.  However, even within one language there are
inconsistencies in the analogy.  In English, the word "before" functions
like Chinese "qian": it can mean "in front of me" or "happened earlier."
And in Chinese, "xiang qian kan," which one might say to a friend
who's had recent troubles, literally "look forward," does in fact mean
"look to the future."
  Actually, the differing analogies seem to come from a variation in
reference frame.  If I look as an impassive observer (NOT one in the
middle of a metaphorical passage through time) at several events coming
up in the future: (time --->)


it certainly does look like event a is "before" B in both temporal and
physical senses, and that event c is both "behind" B and "after" it, just
like the Chinese would naturally say. But if I, the observer, am looking
at things relative to my OWN "walk" through time,


then I am facing event b, which is ahead of me in my future.  Behind me
is event a, in the past, just like we normally say in English.
  Whether this is evidence of greater SELF-centeredness in Western (at
least English-language) culture than in Asian culture may be a question best
left unanswered.
  And, a final thought: the first time I asked my Chinese teacher about
this, he replied that of COURSE events in the future correspond to the
"back," and vice versa: we can see what's in front of us, just like we
know what's happened in the past; but we can see neither the future nor
what's behind us.

Roger Levy


<35:95>From hineline@helix.ucsd.edu Wed Jul 24 19:29:44 1996

From: Mark Hineline <hineline@helix.ucsd.edu>
Subject: Understanding Gould
To: darwin-l@raven.cc.ukans.edu
Date: Wed, 24 Jul 1996 17:29:42 -0700 (PDT)

Bryant Furlow writes:

>While Gould may not have meant to have conveyed this naive
>vision of evolutionary science to non-scientists, he has very
>effectively done so!

Someone would do a great kindness, not only to humanists but to
biologists and geologists as well, to write a very careful, even-handed
review essay on Gould's ideas and arguments, taking into consideration
not only his scientific publications _and_ the popular work, but the
dozens of book reviews, book prefaces, and so on.

I find that almost everyone I talk to is either a) confused about what
Gould believes or b) absolutely certain that Gould is wrong. Come to
think of it, these are not mutually exclusive categories.

Mark Hineline
Department of History
La Jolla, CA 92093


<35:96>From dasher@netcom.com Fri Jul 26 01:07:09 1996

Date: Thu, 25 Jul 1996 23:07:01 -0700
From: dasher@netcom.com (Anton Sherwood)
To: darwin-l@raven.cc.ukans.edu
Subject: Re: The space of time, and the geographer Arno Peters

I'd like to see a history of the world, or a timeline chart, that
assigns equal space to every N human deaths (from all causes),
rather than to every N years.  That way, the number of years on
a page shrinks as population grows.

Similarly, except to a geologist it makes sense for an atlas to give
more and bigger maps of Europe than of Siberia: the number of people
to a page ought to be roughly constant.

Another quibble with the Peters Projection: the aspect ratio is too
low.  A case can be made for drawing the equator twice as long as a
meridian (true average length), or pi times (true length at the equator)
... there may be other "ideals"; but the Peters atlas uses a ratio <2,
and I can't see a good reason for it.

Anton Sherwood   *\\*   +1 415 267 0685   *\\*   DASher@netcom.com


<35:97>From GRANSOM@ucrac1.ucr.edu Fri Jul 26 22:35:51 1996

Date: Fri, 26 Jul 1996 20:35:18 -0700 (PDT)
From: GREG RANSOM <GRANSOM@ucrac1.ucr.edu>
Subject: Harriet Martineau, narrative, and Darwin

I'm working on a paper comparing the explanatory problem
(undesigned order) and explanatory strategy (bottom-up
non-reducible/non-necessary law open-ended causal element)
of Darwinian biology and economics, two historical sciences.
In my research I have been tracking down the links between
Charles Darwin's readings and contacts in political economy at
the time of his struggles over the problems of learning,
habit, and moral sense, and their relation to the problems
of evolution by descent (i.e. his 1838 deliberations and musings).

Most interesting among these contacts are his readings of
the work of Harriet Martineau.  Marineau was a sharp student
of the emerging science of economics, and here writings on
this subject outsold other writers of the period by a wide margin,
include such notables as Mill and Dickens.  What I found most
interesting is Martineau's method, here claims about the differing
methods of the natural and the moral & political sciences.  In
the context of our recent communications on the role of narrative
in science, and in the historical sciences in particular, what
stuck out was Martineau's method of presenting economics ideas in
the form of particular instances and what she called 'illustrations'.

Martineau began her work with only a limited background in economics,
writing on popular topics discussing such things as changes in the
division of labor over time, etc., building on the spatterings of Adam
Smith and others that she had run into.  But shortly thereafter, in
1927, Martineau ran across Jan Marcet's _Conversations on Political
Economy_.  Martineau, in here _Autobiography_, recalls:  (quoting from
_Harriet Martineau:  First Woman Sociologist_ by Susan Hoecker-Drysdale,
Oxford: Berg. 1992).

"great was my surprise to find that I had been teaching [Political
Economy} unawares, in my stories about Machinery and Wages.  It
struck me at once that the principles of the whole science might
be advantageously conveyed in the same way -- not by being smothered
up in a story, but by being exhibited in their natural workings in
selected passages of social life.  It has always appeard very strange
to me that so few people seem to have understood this.  Students of
all manner of physical sciences afterwards wanted me to 'illustrate'
things of which social life (and therefore fiction) can afford no
no illustration.  I used to say till I was tired that none but morel
moral and political science admitted of the method at all. (_Auto.,
I: 138).

I strikes me, however, than in fact this is just also the method
that Darwin used to explain and support his own conception of the
science of biology "the whole science advantageously conveyed in
or by being exhibited in the natural workings in selected passages
of biological life", hense Darwin's later careful particular studies
of earthworms, etc.

What I am looking for is direction to anything in the literature
discussing Harriet Martineau and here work in political economy and
scientific method (she was a translator of Comte) in connection with
Darwin and his explanatory project.  Any help would be appreciated.

Greg Ransom
Dept. of Philosophy


<35:98>From GRANSOM@ucrac1.ucr.edu Sat Jul 27 15:48:54 1996

Date: Sat, 27 Jul 1996 13:48:20 -0700 (PDT)
From: GREG RANSOM <GRANSOM@ucrac1.ucr.edu>
Subject: Maps of time, chronologies of complex evolving systems

Murray Gell-Mann has an interesting discussion of
how we might 'map' the measure of the complexity of
evolving systems through time in his _The Quark and
the Jaguar_.  Gell-Mann writes:

"The complexity at a given time of an evolving system
(whether a complex adaptive system or a nonadaptive
one) does not supply a measure of what levels of complexity
it or its descendents (literal or figurative) may attain
in the future.  To fill that need, we introduced earlier
the concept of potential complexity [i.e. when a modest
change in a scheme permits a complex adaptive system to create
a great deal of new effective complexity over a certain
period of time, the modified schema can be said to have a
greately increased value of potential complexity with respect
to that time interval.]  To define it, we consider the
possible future histories of the system and average the
system's effective complexity at each future time over those
histories, with each one weighted according to its probability.
(The natural unit of time for this purpose is the average
interval between random changes in the system.)  The resulting
potential complexity, as a function of time in the future,
tells us something about the likelihood that the system will
develop into something highly complex by that time, perhaps
even by spawning a whole new kind of complex adaptive system.
In the example we discussed earlier, potential complexity would
distinguish emerging humans from the other great apes, even
through their effective complexity at the time was not much
different.  Likewise, a planetary surface with a significant
probability of generating life within a certain time would be
distinguished from one on which life was not a serious possibility."
(pp. 229-230)

Greg Ransom
Dept. of Philosophy


<35:99>From DARWIN@iris.uncg.edu Sun Jul 28 19:32:40 1996

Date: Sun, 28 Jul 1996 20:25:43 -0500 (EST)
From: DARWIN@iris.uncg.edu
Subject: Ahouse on Gould (fwd)
To: darwin-l@ukanaix.cc.ukans.edu
Organization: University of NC at Greensboro

--begin forwarded message--------------

Date: Fri, 26 Jul 1996 11:04:57 -0400
To: darwin-l@raven.cc.ukans.edu
From: ahouse@hydra.rose.brandeis.edu (Jeremy C. Ahouse)
Subject: Re: Understanding Gould

Mark Hineline suggests:

>Someone would do a great kindness, not only to humanists but to
>biologists and geologists as well, to write a very careful, even-handed
>review essay on Gould's ideas and arguments, taking into consideration
>not only his scientific publications _and_ the popular work, but the
>dozens of book reviews, book prefaces, and so on.

        I have submitted a longish essay to Biology and Philosophy
stimulated by Dennett's anti-Gould chapter. "Even handed" seems to be a
function of whose cheeks are being slapped by those hands - so I can't
promise that all will perceive my contribution as even. My essay does not
review all of Gould's corpus of popular writings, but I do try to state a
number of his positions clearly.

        - Jeremy

        Jeremy C. Ahouse
        Biology Department
        Brandeis University
        Waltham, MA 02254-9110
ph:     (617) 736-4954
fax:    (617) 736-2405
email:  ahouse@hydra.rose.brandeis.edu
web:    http://www.rose.brandeis.edu/users/simister/pages/Ahouse

--end forwarded message----------------


<35:100>From m.schmitt@uni-bonn.de Mon Jul 29 09:00:00 1996

Date: Mon, 29 Jul 1996 08:59:40 -0500
To: darwin-l@raven.cc.ukans.edu
From: m.schmitt@uni-bonn.de (Michael Schmitt)
Subject: reciprocal illumination

Dear colleagues,

at present I am preparing a biographical essay on Willi Hennig (which will
appear in a book on *Klassiker der Biologie* (classics in biology) published
by C.H.Beck, Muenchen, probably late 1997. In the course of my research I
found that Hennig obviously misunderstood the method of *reciprocal
illumination* which he cites from an ethnologist in his 1950 book (p.26).

In 1966 (*Phylogenetic Systematics*) he mentioned this method several times.
On p.21 he characterizes it as *checking, correcting, and rechecking of the
Anglo-Saxon authors*. This phrase is literally taken from Klaus Guenther's
contribution to *Fortschritte der Zoologie* 1956, vol 10 p.48.

In my opinion, the method of *reciprocal illumination* as described by e.g.
Wilhelm Dilthey is by no means identical with *checking, correcting, and

My questions to the group:

1. Does anybody know of *Anglo-Saxon authors* who translated or
circumscribed *wechselseitige Erhellung* (reciprocal illumination) by
*checking, correcting, and rechecking* before 1956?

2. Could anybody tell me who first equalized *reciprocal illumination* to
the *hermeneutic circle* or *hermeneutic spiral*, respectively?

I see that the whole affair immediately touches the problem of proper
methodology in historical science, but I do not want to go into this
discussion right here.

Thank you for any comment.

                                      Michael Schmitt

* Dr. Michael Schmitt (Zoologischer Anzeiger)                  *
* Zoologisches Forschungsinstitut und Museum Alexander Koenig  *
* Adenauerallee 160, D-53113 Bonn, Germany                     *
* Phone/Fax +49 228-9122 286, e-mail: m.schmitt@uni-bonn.de    *


<35:101>From DARWIN@iris.uncg.edu Wed Jul 31 10:35:49 1996

Date: Wed, 31 Jul 1996 11:35:41 -0500 (EST)
From: DARWIN@iris.uncg.edu
Subject: July 31 -- Today in the Historical Sciences
To: darwin-l@ukanaix.cc.ukans.edu
Organization: University of NC at Greensboro


1858: RICHARD DIXON OLDHAM is born at Dublin, Ireland.  The son of a geologist
at Trinity College, Oldham will himself study at the Royal School of Mines,
and will eventually go to work for the Geological Survey of India, where his
colleagues will judge him "a little too independent sometimes for those in
authority."  He will publish widely on the geology of India and the Himalayas,
and will devote himself particularly to the developing field of seismology,
offering the first substantial seismologic evidence for the existence of a
metallic core at the center of the earth.  He will receive the Lyell Medal of
the Geological Society of London in 1908 and will eventually retire to Wales,
where he will die in 1936.

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 listserv@raven.cc.ukans.edu or connect to
the Darwin-L Web Server (http://rjohara.uncg.edu) for more information.


<35:102>From DARWIN@iris.uncg.edu Wed Jul 31 10:39:22 1996

Date: Wed, 31 Jul 1996 11:39:19 -0500 (EST)
From: DARWIN@iris.uncg.edu
Subject: Roger Tory Peters dies (fwd from ORNITH-L)
To: darwin-l@ukanaix.cc.ukans.edu
Organization: University of NC at Greensboro

--begin forwarded message--------------

Date: Tue, 30 Jul 1996 16:05:54 -0500
From: Nancy Hardtmann <Nancy_Hardtmann_at_ray__rec__phl07u42@ccgate.ueci.com>
Subj:  Re: Roger Tory Peterson dies


"Foremost Bird-Watcher Roger Tory Peterson Dies [Obituaries]."
Washington Post, 30 July, B5. "Roger Peterson, 87, the Nation's
Guide to the Birds, Is Dead."  New York Times, 30 July, A1, D19.

Roger Tory Peterson, author of "A Field Guide to the Birds," died
July 28 at home in Connecticut at age 87.  Peterson's guide,
filled with detailed drawings and photos, is the definitive
birding field guide and has sold over 5 million copies since the
first edition in 1934.  Peterson received the Medal of Freedom in
1980, and said he considered himself "to have been the bridge
between the shotgun and the binoculars in bird-watching."  In his
1994 book on Peterson's work, William Zinsser credited Peterson
with making bird-watching available to ordinary people, and thus
helping to create the base of the environmental movement.

--end forwarded message----------------


<35:103>From pcg@panix.com Tue Jul 30 01:28:07 1996

From: Paul Gallagher <pcg@panix.com>
Subject: Re: Ahouse on Gould (fwd)
To: darwin-l@raven.cc.ukans.edu
Date: Tue, 30 Jul 1996 02:28:07 -0400 (EDT)
Cc: pcg@panix.com

> Mark Hineline suggests:
> >Someone would do a great kindness, not only to humanists but to
> >biologists and geologists as well, to write a very careful, even-handed
> >review essay on Gould's ideas and arguments, taking into consideration
> >not only his scientific publications _and_ the popular work, but the
> >dozens of book reviews, book prefaces, and so on.

In "Is a new and general theory of evolution emerging?" (Paleobiology 6:119-
30 (1981)), Gould presents a good summary of his views on a number of issues.
That's not what you asked for, but it's a start toward understanding Gould.
The article shows one of Gould's virtues: in addition to his own research,
he is very good at clarifying and synthesizing other people's ideas.



<35:104>From ahouse@hydra.rose.brandeis.edu Tue Jul 30 08:41:32 1996

Date: Tue, 30 Jul 1996 09:42:07 -0400
To: darwin-l@raven.cc.ukans.edu (Darwin List)
From: ahouse@hydra.rose.brandeis.edu (Jeremy C. Ahouse)
Subject: Genetics history resources

While surfing I cam across a resource that may appeal to someof you,
classical papers in genetics are collected at:


If you liked that also visit the history of genetics pages:


        - Jeremy

        Jeremy C. Ahouse
        Biology Department
        Brandeis University
        Waltham, MA 02254-9110
ph:     (617) 736-4954
fax:    (617) 736-2405
email:  ahouse@hydra.rose.brandeis.edu
web:    http://www.rose.brandeis.edu/users/simister/pages/Ahouse


<35:105>From ahouse@hydra.rose.brandeis.edu Tue Jul 30 09:31:30 1996

Date: Tue, 30 Jul 1996 10:31:28 -0400
To: darwin-l@raven.cc.ukans.edu (Darwin List)
From: ahouse@hydra.rose.brandeis.edu (Jeremy C. Ahouse)
Subject: Sokal's hoax a Piltdown for our time?


        While I haven't had a chance to read the initial papers in Social
Text and Lingua Franca I have read various reviews (Fish NYT, Weinberg
NYReview of books) and had a number of people ask me what I thought about
this. Would Piltdown Man have made as big a splash if it had been admitted
and exposed as quickly as it was or did that hoax get some of its strength
by anonimity and longevity.

       So if you would like to pontificate at parties please do so after
visiting the web page that reviews the Sokal's article and the subsequent


        - Jeremy


<35:106>From DARWIN@iris.uncg.edu Wed Jul 31 10:54:13 1996

Date: Wed, 31 Jul 1996 11:43:31 -0500 (EST)
From: DARWIN@iris.uncg.edu
Subject: CFP: Tocharian and Indoeuropean Studies (fwd from indoeuropean)
To: darwin-l@ukanaix.cc.ukans.edu
Organization: University of NC at Greensboro

--begin forwarded message--------------

Date: Tue, 30 Jul 1996 13:04:58 +0200
From: "Fco. Javier Marnez Gara" <martinez@em.uni-frankfurt.de>
To: indoeuropean@mcfeeley.cc.utexas.edu
Subject: CALL FOR PAPERS: TIES - Tocharian and Indo-European Studies

                        CALL FOR PAPERS

          TIES - Tocharian and Indo-European Studies
                Founded by Joerundur Hilmarsson
                          Edited by
       Georges Pinault - Klaus T. Schmidt - Werner Winter
                         Assisted by
            L.Isebaert (Bibliographical Editor) and
          Jens Elmegaard Rasmussen (Executive Editor)

In persuance of a congressional decision made at the Tocharian
Colloquy held by the Indogermanische Gesellschaft at Saarbruecken
in October 1995, a new editorial board has been formed with the
objective to issue the journal _Tocharian and Indo-European
Studies_ (TIES) which was discontinued by the untimely death of its
founder Joerundur Hilmarsson in 1992.
        Explorations into the possibility of continuing the journal on
Icelandic hands having proved negative, the plan is now to bring out
the journal in Copenhagen in a shape and at a price not too much out of
comparison with its earlier policy. Due to old and sentimental
connections between Iceland and Denmark, it just may be realistically
hoped that the Danish government will allot the necessary fundings to
the project. An indispensable condition, however, is that there exist a
full manuscript of the first volume by October 1st of this year.
Therefore, authors are urged to send manuscripts for publication in
TIES, Vol.7 as soon as possible, and not later than August 1st, if need
be in preliminary form to allow a final touch to be given during the
last weeks available for the editorial preparations. This is admittedly
a very tight schedule, but we feel it is in everybody's interest that we
seize the present opportunity rather than wait for the next chance which
is a whole year later. And indeed, the lack of the journal just may have
led to an accumulation of ready or semi-ready papers for which the
proper outlet can now be provided.
   You will be doing a great favour to the community of Tocharian and
Indo-European studies and a continued tribute to the memory of Joerundur
Hilmarsson by sending a paper to the address printed below. If you can,
please help us in the process by adding a diskette; you will cause the
least amount of problems by using WordPerfect 5.1, but most systems can
be handled, and anything is helpful. If you indicate an e-mail or fax
address, the executive editor can give you the board's decision on your
paper within two or three weeks. The typographical appearance of the
volume will be slightly standardized, but as a matter of principle the
choice of textual organization is free. What we need now, is the papers
themselves, we can do aesthetics later.
   We strongly appeal to scholars in and around the intersection of
Tocharian and Indo-European studies to receate the important journal
that TIES used to be. This is a job that deserves to be done, and
together we can do it.

June 11, 1996                                   THE EDITORS

Tocharian and Indo-European Studies      Phone + 45 35 86 65
Jens Elmegaard Rasmussen                 Secretary + 45 35 32 86 41
Department of Linguistics (IAAS)         Fax + 45 35 32 86 35
University of Copenhagen                 e-mail jer@cphling.dk
Njalsgade 80
DK-2300 Copenhagen S

--end forwarded message----------------


<35:107>From DARWIN@iris.uncg.edu Wed Jul 31 11:18:41 1996

Date: Wed, 31 Jul 1996 12:15:10 -0500 (EST)
From: DARWIN@iris.uncg.edu
Subject: Reciprocal illumination and Dilthey
To: darwin-l@ukanaix.cc.ukans.edu
Organization: University of NC at Greensboro

Michael Schmitt asks about Hennig's use of the term "reciprocal illumination"
and says:

>In my opinion, the method of *reciprocal illumination* as described by e.g.
>Wilhelm Dilthey is by no means identical with *checking, correcting, and

I wonder if Michael or someone else would enlighten us with an explanation
of what Dilthey meant by this term.  Dilthey is someone I have heard much
about but have never really studied; I would be happy to learn more.

Bob O'Hara (darwin@iris.uncg.edu)


<35:108>From JMARKS@YaleVM.CIS.Yale.Edu Wed Jul 31 11:26:54 1996

Date: Wed, 31 Jul 96 12:24:11 EDT
From: Jon Marks <JMARKS@YaleVM.CIS.Yale.Edu>
Organization: Yale University
Subject: History of genetics sites
To: Darwin-L <darwin-l@raven.cc.ukans.edu>

For you surfers interested in the history of genetics, I put up a eugenics
page.  The URL is:


     --Jon Marks

Darwin-L Message Log 35: 84-108 -- July 1996                                End

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