Explore Evolution The Arguments for and Against Neo-Darwinism
Category

Embryology

Genetic Toolkits

According to the online critique of Explore Evolution by the National Center for Science Education (NCSE): The authors of EE “omit the recent research showing evolutionary conservation of the genetic pathways regulating animal development.” Biologists “now know there is an evolutionarily conserved ‘genetic toolkit’—a set of genes responsible for constructing all animals, from sea anemones to fruit flies to humans (Carroll et al. 2005, Davidson, 2005). The only mention [in EE] of the genetic regulation of development refers to the outdated macromutation theory from the 1940’s by Richard Goldschmidt.”[1] The NCSE Critique’s claim that except for mentioning Richard Goldschmidt, EE fails to discuss” the genetic regulation of development” is false. Such a discussion is found on pages 101-111 of EE. Unlike Neo-Darwinists, however, EE challenges the idea that DNA controls Read More ›

Haeckel, Darwin, and Textbooks

According to the online critique of Explore Evolution by the National Center for Science Education (NCSE): (A) EE falsely claims that Darwin accepted Ernst Haeckel’s Biogenetic Law that “ontogeny recapitulates phylogeny.” In particular, the claim in EE that “Darwin thought that the observable similarities in different embryos revealed what the ancestors to these organisms would have looked like” [p. 66 of EE] “contradicts the majority view of prominent Darwin scholars (including Ernst Mayr, Stephen Jay Gould, David Hull, and Peter Bowler).”[1](B) EE “falsely asserts Darwin thought the similarities between embryos were greater at the earliest stages of development,” and falsely suggests “that common descent and Haeckel’s Biogenetic Law require that the earliest stages of animal development are most similar.” But Darwin actually thought that “embryos at the earliest stages Read More ›

The Arguments for and Against Neo-Darwinism