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Adaptation and Natural Selection:
A Critique of Some Current Evolutionary Thought
George C. Williams
With a new preface by the author

One of Princeton University Press's Notable Centenary Titles.

Paperback | 1996 | $31.95 / £21.95 | ISBN: 9780691026152
320 pp. | 5 x 8 | 2 figures
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eBook | ISBN: 9781400820108 |
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Reviews | Table of Contents

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Biological evolution is a fact--but the many conflicting theories of evolution remain controversial even today. In 1966, simple Darwinism, which holds that evolution functions primarily at the level of the individual organism, was threatened by opposing concepts such as group selection, a popular idea stating that evolution acts to select entire species rather than individuals. George Williams's famous argument in favor of the Darwinists struck a powerful blow to those in opposing camps. His Adaptation and Natural Selection, now a classic of science literature, is a thorough and convincing essay in defense of Darwinism; its suggestions for developing effective principles for dealing with the evolution debate and its relevance to many fields outside biology ensure the timelessness of this critical work.

Review:

"A beautifully written and excellently reasoned essay in defense of Darwinian selection as a sufficient theory to explain evolution without the necessity of group selection, population adaptation, or progress."--R. C. Lewontin, Science

"This is an exciting, significant, and important work.... On the whole it will have a very beneficial influence on biology with a rich supply of subjects and targets for some years to come.... This is a carefully constructed, carefully written scholarly work, in the best sense of these words."--L. B. Slobodkin, The Quarterly Review of Biology

Table of Contents:

Preface (1996)
Preface
1Introduction3
2Natural Selection, Adaptation, and Progress20
3Natural Selection, Ecology and Morphogenesis56
4Group Selection92
5Adaptations of the Genetic System125
6Reproductive Physiology and Behavior158
7Social Adaptations193
8Other Supposedly Group-Related Adaptations221
9The Scientific Study of Adaptation251
Literature Cited275
Index291

Another Princeton book authored or coauthored by George Christopher Williams:

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Hardcover published in 1966

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      File created: 4/17/2014

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