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Reframing the Homology Problem

Gouvea, Devin (2018) Reframing the Homology Problem. In: UNSPECIFIED.

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Abstract

Recent philosophical work on biological homology has generally treated its conceptual fragmentation as a problem to be solved by new accounts that either unify disparate approaches to homology or specify sharp constraints on its meaning. I show that several proposed solutions either misunderstand or ignore central features of comparative biological research, despite attempts to capture scientific practice. I conclude that the problem is incorrectly framed and that disagreements about homology may be epistemically fruitful. Empirically tractable debates are more likely to occur among biologists who share theoretical perspectives on homology. Philosophers should consider homology not merely as a generator of inductive generalizations but also as a scaffold for meaningful empirical comparisons.


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Item Type: Conference or Workshop Item (UNSPECIFIED)
Creators:
CreatorsEmailORCID
Gouvea, Devindgouvea@uchicago.edu0000-0003-3165-5125
Keywords: homology, conceptual change, evolutionary biology, developmental biology
Subjects: Specific Sciences > Biology > Developmental Biology
Specific Sciences > Biology > Evolutionary Theory
Specific Sciences > Biology > Systematics
General Issues > Theory Change
Depositing User: Ms. Devin Gouvea
Date Deposited: 02 Nov 2018 01:13
Last Modified: 02 Nov 2018 01:13
Item ID: 15236
Subjects: Specific Sciences > Biology > Developmental Biology
Specific Sciences > Biology > Evolutionary Theory
Specific Sciences > Biology > Systematics
General Issues > Theory Change
Date: 31 October 2018
URI: https://philsci-archive-dev.library.pitt.edu/id/eprint/15236

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