This paper presents ideas and initiatives by Massimo Pigliucci, Gerd Müller, and others, who are proposing an Extended Evolutionary Synthesis (EES). Some reasons for concern raised by their claims include uncertainties in timing, historical inaccuracies, lack of a theoretical structure, arbitrariness and instability of the included concepts, stereotypical characterization of the Modern Synthesis (MS), and dissent among evolutionary biologists. Historians of the MS such as Joe Cain explain that Mayr, Dobzhansky, Huxley & Co. claimed they were part of a Modern Synthesis also for strategic and political reasons, related to their own careers and to more general cultural battles of the time. Although the MS was not an invented product of a marketing operation, the social and interactive dynamics of science are very important in understanding what it was. The same could be true for the EES in our years. Pigliucci’s question, “Do we need an EES?”, suggests very important issues: how is biology today, how has it changed, what future expects us. But we shouldn’t take at face value what the protagonists of evolutionary biology see and say. The ‘expert review’ or the ‘small group of architects’ methods won’t work. No solution either comes from a traditional philosophical approach of ‘describing the structure of evolutionary theory’, because scientists do not work ‘inside’ theories; they rather use them in different ways. Correct research questions could be developed about the scientific literature, the ways of doing science, the ‘hot topics’, the birth and death of fields, the inclusion in evolutionary biology etc., through time. Rigorous methods should be employed for answering, including some from the social sciences and computer sciences. This would mean to look seriously at the scientific community, avoiding, on the one hand, the authority principle, and, on the other hand, a view of evolutionary biology as fragmented and pulverized.
|Citazione:||Serrelli, E. (2013). The Extended Evolutionary Synthesis: new theory, new practices, new marketing, or new narratives?. Intervento presentato a: The Evolution Conference, Snowbird, Utah, USA.|
|Carattere della pubblicazione:||Scientifica|
|Presenza di un coautore afferente ad Istituzioni straniere:||No|
|Titolo:||The Extended Evolutionary Synthesis: new theory, new practices, new marketing, or new narratives?|
|Data di pubblicazione:||22-giu-2013|
|Nome del convegno:||The Evolution Conference|
|Appare nelle tipologie:||02 - Intervento a convegno|