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BIO 203L- Lecture 1

by: Karissa Sandoval

BIO 203L- Lecture 1 BIOL 203L 005

Karissa Sandoval
GPA 3.5
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About this Document

History of Evolutionary Thought
Ecology and Evolution Laboratory
Dr. Kelly Miller and Dr. Scott Collins
Class Notes
BIO 203, evolution, history




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This 5 page Class Notes was uploaded by Karissa Sandoval on Tuesday January 26, 2016. The Class Notes belongs to BIOL 203L 005 at University of New Mexico taught by Dr. Kelly Miller and Dr. Scott Collins in Spring 2016. Since its upload, it has received 96 views. For similar materials see Ecology and Evolution Laboratory in Biology at University of New Mexico.


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Date Created: 01/26/16
BIO 203: Evolution Lecture 1 • Evolution – The Grand Unifying Theory of Biology – “Nothing in Biology Makes Sense Except in the Light of Evolution” T. Dobzhansky • Diversity of Life – Basic observations about life • Life is variable • Life is diverse and differential similarities can be recognized • There are apparent levels of complexity • Creation stories (“mythologies”) – Creator deity (or deities) creates through various means • Through thought from nothing • Through manipulation/organization of chaos or other existing matter • As part of the creator(s) – The world was created more or less the way it is today (changeless) • “Classical” thought – Plato (428-347BC) • Idea that God shaped the world from pre-existent matter • World of “forms” – unchanging, universal constants. We see only an imperfect image or copy of the world of forms – Aristotle (384-322 BC) • Thought the world was eternal, and not created • “Forms” are universal and unchanging, but exist within the particular things of the world, not in a separate world • Change is associated with particulars, but not with forms -- Species are reflections of perfect “ideas”, and thus, are unchanging • Genesis – Western Judeo-Christian world view – “Special creation” – God created the universe from nothing in 6 days according to Genesis 1-2 – Has been interpreted as: • The earth is young (about 6000 yrs) • Each species (“kind”) was created independently by God and is immutable (unchanging) • Apparent change is explained by The Great Deluge (Noah’s Flood) – the demise of certain “kinds” of life and minor changes in geology • Development of ideas – Cultural change in Renaissance / early Modern periods – 14-18 th centuries • Renewed emphasis on learning and inquiry BIO 203: Evolution Lecture 1 • Assimilation of classical and Arabic learning • Age of Enlightenment (appeal to human reason, rationalism) • Protestant Reformation and rejection of authority of the Catholic Church (also the Catholic Reformation) • Age of Exploration • Development of printing and periodicals, and universities, societies, and academies • Development of ideas – Conceptual development • Morphological similarity (homology) • Idea that organisms do have similarities and are organized that way • Good adaptations • Feature corresponds with the functionality • Geology and Fossils • Extinction • Intermediate forms • Vestigial features • Homology – Regularities of similarities among diverse organisms are the foundation of all we do in biology – The “same” but “different” – Pierre Belon (1517-1564), French naturalist • Comparative anatomy • Compare the anatomy of different species and found out that all species have many bones in common – Baron Georges Léopold Chrétien Frédéric Dagobert Cuvier (1769- 1832), French naturalist • Principle of Correlation of Parts – “The number, direction, and shape of the bones that compose each part of an animal's body are always in a necessary relation to all the other parts” – Richard Owen (1804-1892), English comparative anatomist • Coined the term “homology” • Applied homology to vertebrates • Went against Darwin *Homologies come in a discrete pattern • Hierarchical classification – Carl von Linné (1707-1778), Swedish naturalist • Used hierarchy of homologies among living things to develop classification • Very good adaptations BIO 203: Evolution Lecture 1 – Many features seem uniquely suited to particular functions or environmental conditions • Ex: rats that live in a light environment may have a light fur color rather than those that live in a darker environment will have darker colored fur • Geology and Fossils – Fossils – interface of biology and geology • Fossils and Geologic History – Avicenna (980-1037), Persian polymath • Law of Superposition – Sedimentary rock is deposited in a time sequence with the oldest on bottom – Steno (1638-1686), Danish geologist • Principle of Original Horizontality –Sedimentary rock is deposited relatively horizontally – James Hutton (1726-1797), Scottish naturalist • Principle of Gradualism – Geologic change occurs gradually – Charles Lyell (1797-1875), Scottish geologist • Long geologic time and Uniformitarianism – Processes occurring today are the same as in the past and are the same throughout the world • Changes seen today were happening throughout time which is gradualism • Process occurred throughout time • Small changes go back a long time – William Smith (1769-1839), English geologist • Principle of Faunal Succession –Sedimentary fossils occur in the time sequence in which they were deposited (different fossils in each stratum) • Living preserved in the older rock layers are not existent today and the same goes for the living shown in the most recent today they did not exist in earlier times • Fossils and Extinction – Pre-1800 – fossils were thought to be creatures that hadn’t been found yet – Increased world exploration showed this to be wrong – Extinction • Cuvier • Most fossil species are extinct • Catastrophism – change is abrupt and catastrophic • Intermediate forms – Taxa with features intermediate between other taxa – If evolution is true we should find missing links – Fossilation is a rare thing and narrow BIO 203: Evolution Lecture 1 • Ex: horse toes eventually disappeared • Vestigial features – Some features have no apparent function • Ex: Coccyx • Science – Science is concerned with finding regularities in nature • Regularities in observations (patterns) • Regularities in causes (processes) • Processes explain the origin and continuation of patterns • Patterns and processes, Living things – Patterns in diversity of living things • Similarities in anatomical features • Discontinuity in anatomical features • Variation in complexity of form • Fossils • Intermediate forms – So what processes gave rise to the patterns? – Science comprises the characterizing of patterns and processes in nature • Philosophical naturalism (materialism) – “God is a non-explanation. Whereas evolution by natural selection is an explanation.” — Richard Dawkins – “It is absolutely safe to say that, if you meet somebody who claims not to believe in evolution, that person is either ignorant, stupid, or insane.” — Richard Dawkins • Creationism – “All the ills from which America suffers can be traced to the teaching of evolution.” ‒ William Jennings Bryan – “Evolution is a bankrupt speculative philosophy, not a scientific fact. Only a spiritually bankrupt society could ever believe it. ... Only atheists could accept this Satanic theory.” ‒ Rev. Jimmy Swaggart • Things for which materialistic naturalism cannot account – The existence of natural, material things – The laws of thought (reason and logic) – The laws of nature (the regularities in the universe) • The reliability of memory • Predictability • Our ability to explain anything – Ethics • Things for which 6-day creationists cannot account – Overwhelming evidence from biology, geology, astronomy, etc. that the universe, the earth and life together either has a long historthor has the appearance of a long history – The 7 day BIO 203: Evolution Lecture 1 – Alternative views that still maintain fidelity to scripture • “Day-age view”, “Mature-creation view”, “Framework view”, “Analogical view”


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