Document Detail

Darwin teleologist? Design in The orchids.
MedLine Citation:
PMID:  20338528     Owner:  NLM     Status:  MEDLINE    
Focusing on "The Orchids," this article aims at disentangling the concepts of teleology, design and natural theology. It refers to several contemporary critics of Darwin (Kölliker, Argyll, Royer, Candolle, Delpino) to challenge Huxley's interpretation that Darwin's system was "a deathblow" to teleology. "The Orchids" seems rather to be a "flank-movement" (Gray): it departs from the Romantic theories of transmutation and the "imaginary examples" of the Origin; it focuses on empirical data and on teleological structures. Although Darwin refers to natural selection, his readers mock him for his fascination for delicate morphological contrivances and co-adaptations - a sign that he was inescapably lured to finality. Some even suggested that his system was a "theodicy". In the history of Darwinism, "The Orchids" reveals "another" quite unexpected and heterodox Darwin: freed from the hypothetical fancies of the Origin, and even suggesting a new kind of physico-theology.
Thierry Hoquet
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Publication Detail:
Type:  Biography; Historical Article; Journal Article     Date:  2010-02-21
Journal Detail:
Title:  Comptes rendus biologies     Volume:  333     ISSN:  1768-3238     ISO Abbreviation:  C. R. Biol.     Publication Date:  2010 Feb 
Date Detail:
Created Date:  2010-03-26     Completed Date:  2010-07-08     Revised Date:  -    
Medline Journal Info:
Nlm Unique ID:  101140040     Medline TA:  C R Biol     Country:  France    
Other Details:
Languages:  eng     Pagination:  119-28     Citation Subset:  IM    
Copyright Information:
2010 Académie des sciences. Published by Elsevier SAS. All rights reserved.
Département de philosophie, université Paris-Ouest-Nanterre-La-Défense, Nanterre, France.
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MeSH Terms
Adaptation, Physiological
Botany / history*
History, 19th Century
Orchidaceae / anatomy & histology,  physiology*
Plant Structures / anatomy & histology,  physiology
Religion and Science*
Theology / history
Personal Name Subject
Personal Name Subject:
Charles Darwin

From MEDLINE®/PubMed®, a database of the U.S. National Library of Medicine

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