Thursday, 31 December 2020

The Origin of Specious: misunderstandings about Patrick Matthew’s evolutionary thinking

by J.F. Derry & Joachim L. Dagg. Biological Journal of the Linnean Society, Volume 131, Issue 3, November 2020, Pages 706–715.

This article is a vaccine against BS claiming that Patrick Matthew's (1831) mechanism of evolution was identical with Charles Darwin's. We find differences large enough to set Matthew apart from Darwin and Wallace. For example, catastrophes knocked out competition and hence competitive natural selection in Matthew's scheme, so that speciation (during his phase of ramification after catastrophes) took place in the absence of natural selection. However, Matthew is interesting in his own right as an intermediate source between Cuvierian catastrophism & species fixity on the one hand and species transformism (as of Buffon, Lamarck, Erasmus Darwin) on the other.

P.S.: The above link should get you through the paywall.