Special Issue "Systematics and Evolutionary Biology"
A special issue of Diversity (ISSN 1424-2818).
Deadline for manuscript submissions: closed (31 May 2015)
Prof. Dr. Jeffrey H. Schwartz
Departments of Anthropology and History and Philosophy of Science, University of Pittsburgh 3302 WWPH, Pittsburgh PA 15260, USA
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Interests: method, theory, and philosophy in evolutionary biology; especially the origin vs. survival of species; the origin and diversification of primates; human and faunal skeletal analysis of archaeological recovered remains
Although history presents the “modern evolutionary synthesis” as emphasizing systematic as one of its cornerstones, even a cursory read of the primary literature indicates anything but that. Indeed, to Ernst Mayr and G.G. Simpson, systematics meant “population thinking” and species as continually changing and thus intangible entities, rather than potential taxonomic units. Thus the questions regarding species and determining their phylogenetic relationships were bound to considerations of chronological succession when the fossil record was involved and conceiving subspecies as incipient species in the never-fulfilled quest to demonstrate the origin of species. In this special issue, contributors will return to the basics of both systematic practice (the delineation of species and the hypothesizing of their relationships and those of hierarchies of so-hypothesized clades) and theorizing evolutionary models (the origin of organismal novelty and species vs. the persistence of novelty and the survival of species) and discuss the degree to which these intellectual endeavors actually are tied to one another, and how embracing evolutionary models influences ones approach to systematics. It is hoped that examples will represent an array of taxa/clades-representing plants and metazoans, from not just molecular, but especially also morphological perspectives-and a diversity of taxon-specific and/or taxically widespread systematic and theoretical problems. Collectively, then, the contributions to this special issue will hopefully serve as a platform from which to begin to reconsider just how much of a "synthesis" is biologically realistic.
Prof. Dr. Jeffrey H. Schwartz
Manuscript Submission Information
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- the basis of organismal novelty
- origin vs. survival of species
- modeling biogeography