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Stacey Pasternak

on 17 September 2013

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Transcript of DARWIN

Unit 1 Group 1: Darwin
Stacey Pasternak and Emily Bloch

Science and history of evolutionary thought
~Before Darwin (approx 1700s): comparative anatomy, ecology of humans.
~Into Darwin's era (1800s): early evolution, natural selection.
(At University of Padua, started to dissect corpses for students to observe. Famous for the charts he drew of the body. Rejected his prior belief in Galenism and even rejected some of the Greek physician, Galen's, findings. Discovered Galen didn't dissect humans, but oxen and monkeys. Began teaching at other schools and showed the differences between human and monkey skeletons. In 1543, his anatomy book of human skeletons was published.)
binomial nomenclature
. His system came from Aristotle's Great Chain of Being. He was a physician at the University of Uppsala. He began his taxonomical organization with plants. In 1735, "Systema Naturae" was published, in which he classified organisms into genus's and species. He went on to classify humans with primates and kept adding to his naming system, adding in families and orders and kingdoms until he came up with the tree-like taxonomy we see today.)
~Jean Baptiste
Theory of inheritance of acquired characteristics
. Believed species change over time.
Studied animals, and was intrigued to find that they adapted to survive. However, he thought it happened a lot quicker than it actually does, and on purpose. He believed organisms were driven from simple to complex. Believed in natural selection, not in G-d, so he was ridiculed.
and Alfred Russell
(In the 1830s, Darwin began his natural selection theory, but didn't go public with it until two decades later. In the Galapagos, around his beginning of evolutionary thinking, Darwin found that finches look different on every part of the island and classified them, giving way to his theory of adaptation to their environments. While studying pigeons, Darwin and Wallace (the British biologist who also thought of natural selection) thought that, over time, natural selection would cause new body parts to be produced in pigeon offspring.)
Major players leading up to Darwin
(approx. 520 BC): Greek philosopher. In his book, "On Nature," he talked about evolutionary theory. He believed that all living things began in the ocean and eventually left for land.
(approx. 500 BC): Studied early fossils, giving solid ground to the belief in evolution.
(approx. 350 BC): He studied sea creatures and developed an evolutionary theory that focused on changes in gene expression or in the cellular phenotypes, phenotypes being the physical characteristics of organisms.
John Ray
(1686): Wrote a book called "Histora Plantarum," in which over 18,000 plants were classified.
Comte de Buffon
(1749): French naturalist. Defined species as "a group of organisms which can breed and produce fertile offspring," which still stands today. Although he believed in evolution, he did only to an extent. Thought the environment changed, not the species living in it.
Pierre-Louis Moreau de Maupertuis
(1751): Wrote "Systema de la Nature," in which he discussed heredity. Unlike others at the time who believed speciation came from spontaneous generation, he thought it happened spontaneously due to chance happenings in nature.
Charles Bonnet
(1770): Swiss naturalist. Wrote "Philosophical Palingesis" and talked about females and how they are responsibe for the next generation. Believed catastrophies were the causes of evolution, which we will be getting more into now.
Georges Cuvier
. French naturalist. Founded vertebrate paleontology and thought extinction was a true possibility. He also came up with a classification including things such as molusks and radiates. Believed animals could not survive without all of its parts. He did not believe in evolution.
Erasmus Darwin
(1794): English physician/naturalist/poet. Talked about evolution in his book, "Zoonomia." He believed we all came from from one common ancestor. Although he didn't have back-up information to support his ideas, he thought species change came from competition and from sexual selection.

What Darwin discovered and what was so important about his findings
South America
back to
and then home to
~Cuttlefish changing
(At will! Cape Verde, tidal pools. One of the many observations that helped form a background for his important theories.)
~Layer of shells 45 feet above
sea level
(In Santiago. Made him think about how they got from sea level to above it. This, in turn, gave way to his theory of the ocean floor sinking and of continental shelves.)
~Plant and animal
(Collected. In Falkland Islands, he saw how different all the fossils truly were. Started his famous comparative studies of them.)
(What makes some species better than others at thriving in their environments. Thus, they are believed to breed. It's relevance event today showed just how important Darwin was to humankind.)


(Let us explain species without a creator, so it was a big deal. Set new track for science. Made "positivism" occur, an intellectual and spiritual revolution for humankind.)

~His thought-provoking book,
On the Origin of Species
(Cause for massive interest around the world. Mostly due to the fact that it was either viewed as a step in the right direction [for science] or a leap in the wrong one [for creationists]. Only in the 1930s did natural selection begin to be accepted by most. This book and the rest of his influential works were finally recognized when Darwin was buried. The location is Westminster Abbey, where he is only one out of five non-royals to be buried there.)

~Influence in the

evolutionary biology field
(The ENTIRE field is based off of Darwin's work and findings. Christian views of evolution [creationism] has fallen, and Darwin's scientific studies stay prominent.)
Commonly held belief in 19th century Europe during Darwin’s time that prevented the acceptance of natural selection and evolution:
(Until around 1859, evolution revolved around this. Described as a "teleological march toward greater perfection." Darwin proved that this was untrue.)
~The need for a
(Darwin did away with this need when he showed everyone his understanding of how humans develop, through evolution, and not through creationism. At the time, his discoveries were frowned upon. "Explaining my beliefs is like confessing to a murder" -Darwin)

(Believed we are all God's creation and protested Darwin. During his years, he was denied the opportunity to become a knight by the church. On his 200th birthday, the English Church finally apologized to Darwin for misinterpreting his ideas and ideals.)
Editorial 1 [Darwin’s legacy]
2009 - 150th Anniversary of the publication of "The Origin of Species by Means of Natural Selection.
2-day international conference organized in Lisbon, Portugal: "Evolution Today and Tomorrow, Darwin Evaluated by Contemporary Evolutionary and Philosophical Theories."
Discussed Darwin's theory's impact, as well as controversies over the pace of evolution.
even though we don't know everything, we can attribute a lot of what we do know to Darwin.
Editorial 2 [The Fate of Darwinism: Evolution After the Modern Synthesis]
References Cited
~Cited in AAA format using http://davidson.libguides.com/content.php?pid=367765&sid=3011274

~Barlow, Nora, Barton, Ruth and Barrett, Paul et al.
Darwin Literature
Last updated 4 September 2011

~Bland, Archie
The Big Question: How important was Charles Darwin, and what is his legacy today?
The Independent. 30 December 2008

~Depew, David J. and Weber, Bruce H.
2011 The Fate of Darwinism: Evolution After the Modern Synthesis. December 2011, Volume 6, Issue 1, (pp 89-102) Springer Netherlands

~Gontier, Nathalie.
2010 Darwin’s legacy. Springer-Verlag.

~Mork, Rachel.
What Did Charles Darwin Discover
Life 123: Answers at the Speed of Life. Copyright 2013.

~O'Neil, Dennis.
Pre-Darwinian Theories. Copyright 1998-2012

~University of California Museum of Paleontology.
The History of Evolutionary Thought
Understanding Evolution. 2013. 22 August 2008

Talking Points
The science and history of evolutionary thought
Major players leading up to Darwin
Darwin's discovery and it's importance
19th Century Europe holding Darwin back
Darwin's Legacy
"It will always be remembered that it was through Darwin’s work that men saw for the first time that the problem is one which man may reasonably hope to solve. If Darwin did not solve the problem himself, he first gave us the hope of a solution, perhaps a greater thing. How great a feat this was, we who have heard it all from childhood can scarcely know. (Bateson, cited in Schwartz 1999, p. 196)

(Gontier, Darwin’s legacy)
political cartoon representing Lamarck's take on evolution.
Recent findings are suggesting that Darwinism is coming against its limits and may not be the most relevant guideline anymore.

The Fate of Darwinism: Evolution After the Modern Synthesis explains it in five acts:
Act 1: Natural Selection Contra Mutation -- increased rates of reproduction due to the beneficial effects of identifiable variations.
Act 2: Mutation Plus Natural Selection -- considers Mendelian genetics; genetic variation = fuel of natural selection and natural selection, not mutation, is actual cause adapted traits in lrg. population.
Act 3: The Modern Synthesis -- mapping out genotypes; is fitness really fitness?
Act 4: Molecular Darwinism -- Seen as speculative account of human evolution, involving selfish gene theory; seeing organisms as "assemblies of relatively discreet adaptations."
Act 5: The End of Population Genetic Darwinism -- it's not as simple as cloning a gene here and there; Darwinism may not fully grasp evolutionary concepts.
But it still gave us a kick in the right direction.
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