Samir Okasha, Evolution and the Levels of Selection (Notas Bibliograficas) - Critica

Samir Okasha, Evolution and the Levels of Selection (Notas Bibliograficas)

By Critica

  • Release Date: 2009-12-01
  • Genre: Reference
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Samir Okasha, Evolution and the Levels of Selection (Notas Bibliograficas) by Critica epub - ebook - audiobook

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Samir Okasha, Evolution and the Levels of Selection, Clarendon Press, Oxford, 2006, 263 pp. + xii. Okasha's book on the levels of selection is the most comprehensive philosophical discussion of the subject in relation to the idea of major evolutionary transitions. The following is a critical review of his discussion of some problems and concepts involved in understanding multilevel selection as a causal process. The book begins with an argument in favor of multilevel selection based on the existence of biological units at various hierarchically organized levels, with lower level particles nested within collectives (genes in cells, cells in organisms, organisms in groups). Perhaps a biological world with a hierarchy of levels of biological units is possible without selection operating simultaneously at the different levels. Our world, however, seems to have undergone processes that began with free ranging particles in interaction and ended up in collectives with internal cohesion, functioning as adaptive units. These processes involved selection and involved the leap from genes to genomes, from cells to multi-cellular organisms and from organisms to social groups (pp. 16-17). The transition to new hierarchical levels implied conflicts between adjacent levels, examples of which persist today: some traits seem not to favor the multi-cellular organism, but give advantage to lower level units (e.g., meiotic drive) or to higher ones (classic group selection overriding individual selection). In our world the hierarchy of levels implies multilevel selection.

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