•  15
    Recent philosophical work on biological homology has generally treated its conceptual fragmentation as a problem to be solved by new accounts that either unify disparate approaches to homology or specify sharp constraints on its meaning. I show that several proposed solutions either misunderstand or ignore central features of comparative biological research, despite attempts to capture scientific practice. I conclude that the problem is incorrectly framed and that disagreements about homology ma…Read more
  •  20
    Explanation and the Evolutionary First Law
    Philosophy of Science 82 (3): 363-382. 2015.
    Analogies between Newtonian mechanics and evolutionary processes are powerful but not infinitely versatile tools for generating explanations of particular biological phenomena. Their explanatory range is sensitive to a preliminary decision about which processes count as background conditions and which as special forces. Here I argue that the defenders of the zero-force evolutionary law are mistaken in defending their decision as the only appropriate one. The Hardy–Weinberg principle remains a vi…Read more