Results for 'Biological individuality'

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  1. Biological Individuals.Robert A. Wilson & Matthew J. Barker - 2019 - Stanford Encyclopedia of Philosophy 1 (1).
    The impressive variation amongst biological individuals generates many complexities in addressing the simple-sounding question what is a biological individual? A distinction between evolutionary and physiological individuals is useful in thinking about biological individuals, as is attention to the kinds of groups, such as superorganisms and species, that have sometimes been thought of as biological individuals. More fully understanding the conceptual space that biological individuals occupy also involves considering a range of other concepts, such as life, (...)
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  2. The Multiple Realizability of Biological Individuals.Ellen Clarke - 2013 - Journal of Philosophy 110 (8):413-435.
    Biological theory demands a clear organism concept, but at present biologists cannot agree on one. They know that counting particular units, and not counting others, allows them to generate explanatory and predictive descriptions of evolutionary processes. Yet they lack a unified theory telling them which units to count. In this paper, I offer a novel account of biological individuality, which reconciles conflicting definitions of ‘organism’ by interpreting them as describing alternative realisers of a common functional role, and (...)
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  3. Broadening the Problem Agenda of Biological Individuality: Individual Differences, Uniqueness and Temporality.Rose Trappes & Marie I. Kaiser - 2021 - Biology and Philosophy 36 (2):1-28.
    Biological individuality is a notoriously thorny topic for biologists and philosophers of biology. In this paper we argue that biological individuality presents multiple, interconnected questions for biologists and philosophers that together form a problem agenda. Using a case study of an interdisciplinary research group in ecology, behavioral and evolutionary biology, we claim that a debate on biological individuality that seeks to account for diverse practices in the biological sciences should be broadened to include (...)
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  4. Pathways to Pluralism About Biological Individuality.Beckett Sterner - 2015 - Biology and Philosophy 30 (5):609-628.
    What are the prospects for a monistic view of biological individuality given the multiple epistemic roles the concept must satisfy? In this paper, I examine the epistemic adequacy of two recent accounts based on the capacity to undergo natural selection. One is from Ellen Clarke, and the other is by Peter Godfrey-Smith. Clarke’s position reflects a strong monism, in that she aims to characterize individuality in purely functional terms and refrains from privileging any specific material properties as (...)
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  5. Subjectivity: A Case of Biological Individuation and an Adaptive Response to Informational Overflow.Jakub Jonkisz - 2016 - Frontiers in Psychology 7.
    The article presents a perspective on the scientific explanation of the subjectivity of conscious experience. It proposes plausible answers for two empirically valid questions: the ‘how’ question concerning the developmental mechanisms of subjectivity, and the ‘why’ question concerning its function. Biological individuation, which is acquired in several different stages, serves as a provisional description of how subjective perspectives may have evolved. To the extent that an individuated informational space seems the most efficient way for a given organism to select (...)
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  6. The Importance of Symbiosis in Philosophy of Biology: An Analysis of the Current Debate on Biological Individuality and its Historical Roots.Javier Suárez - 2018 - Symbiosis 76 (2):77-96.
    Symbiosis plays a fundamental role in contemporary biology, as well as in recent thinking in philosophy of biology. The discovery of the importance and universality of symbiotic associations has brought new light to old debates in the field, including issues about the concept of biological individuality. An important aspect of these debates has been the formulation of the hologenome concept of evolution, the notion that holobionts are units of natural selection in evolution. This review examines the philosophical assumptions (...)
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  7.  57
    Scott Lidgard and Lynn K. Nyhart, Eds. Biological Individuality: Integrating Scientific, Philosophical, and Historical Perspectives. [REVIEW]Catherine Kendig - 2018 - Hopos: The Journal of the International Society for the History of Philosophy of Science 8 (2):475-480.
    Biologists, historians of biology, and philosophers of biology often ask what is it to be an individual, really. This book does not answer that question. Instead, it answers a much more interesting one: How do biologists individuate individuals? In answering that question, the authors explore why biologists individuate individuals, in what ways, and for what purposes. The cross-disciplinary, dialogical approach to answering metaphysical questions that is pursued in the volume may seem strange to metaphysicians who are not biologically focused, but (...)
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  8.  48
    Holobionts: Ecological Communities, Hybrids, or Biological Individuals? A Metaphysical Perspective on Multispecies Systems.Vanessa Triviño & Javier Suárez - 2020 - Studies in History and Philosophy of Science Part C: Studies in History and Philosophy of Biological and Biomedical Sciences:1-11.
    Holobionts are symbiotic assemblages composed by a macrobe host plus its symbiotic microbiota. In recent years, the ontological status of holobionts has created a great amount of controversy among philosophers and biologists: are holobionts biological individuals or are they rather ecological communities of independent individuals that interact together? Chiu and Eberl have recently developed an eco-immunity account of the holobiont wherein holobionts are neither biological individuals nor ecological communities, but hybrids between a host and its microbiota. According to (...)
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  9. Individuating Part-Whole Relations in the Biological World.Marie I. Kaiser - 2018 - In O. Bueno, R.-L. Chen & M. B. Fagan (eds.), Individuation Across Experimental and Theoretical Sciences. Oxford: Oxford University Press.
    What are the conditions under which one biological object is a part of another biological object? This paper answers this question by developing a general, systematic account of biological parthood. I specify two criteria for biological parthood. Substantial Spatial Inclusionrequires biological parts to be spatially located inside or in the region that the natural boundary of t he biological whole occupies. Compositional Relevance captures the fact that a biological part engages in a (...) process that must make a necessary contribution to a condition that is minimally sufficient to one or more of the characteristic behaviors of the biological whole. Instead of emphasizing the diversity of part-whole relations in the biological world, this paper asks what biological part-whole relations have in common and what constrains their existence, in general. After presenting the two criteria for biological parthood I discuss in how far my account can cope with hard cases (e.g., redundant parts) and I reveal the merits and limits of monism. (shrink)
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  10.  68
    The Individual in Biology and Psychology.Robert A. Wilson - 1999 - In V. Harcastle (ed.), Where Biology Meets Psychology. pp. 355--374.
    Individual organisms are obvious enough kinds of things to have been taken for granted as the entities that have many commonly attributed biological and psychological properties, both in common sense and in science. The sorts of morphological properties used by the folk to categorize individual animals and plants into common sense kinds (that's a dog; that's a rose), as well as the properties that feature as parts of phenotypes, are properties of individual organisms. And psychological properties, such as believing (...)
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  11. Genes and the Agents of Life: The Individual in the Fragile Sciences Biology.Robert A. Wilson - 2005 - New York, NY, USA: Cambridge University Press.
    Genes and the Agents of Life undertakes to rethink the place of the individual in the biological sciences, drawing parallels with the cognitive and social sciences. Genes, organisms, and species are all agents of life but how are each of these conceptualized within genetics, developmental biology, evolutionary biology, and systematics? The 2005 book includes highly accessible discussions of genetic encoding, species and natural kinds, and pluralism above the levels of selection, drawing on work from across the biological sciences. (...)
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  12. Note on the Individuation of Biological Traits.Mihnea D. I. Capraru - 2018 - Journal of Philosophy 115 (4):215-221.
    Bence Nanay has argued that we must abandon the etiological theory of teleological function because this theory explains functions and functional categories in a circular manner. Paul Griffiths argued earlier that we should retain the etiological theory and instead prevent the circularity by making etiologies independent of functional categories. Karen Neander and Alex Rosenberg reply to Nanay similarly, and argue that we should analyze functions in terms of natural selection acting not on functional categories, but merely on lineages. Nanay replies (...)
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  13. Individuality and Aggregativity.Stéphane Chauvier - 2017 - Philosophy, Theory, and Practice in Biology 9 (11).
    Why is there a specific problem with biological individuality? Because the living realm contains a wide range of exotic particular concrete entities that do not easily match our ordinary concept of an individual. Slime moulds, dandelions, siphonophores are among the Odd Entities that excite the ontological zeal of the philosophers of biology. Most of these philosophers, however, seem to believe that these Odd Cases oblige us to refine or revise our common concept of an individual. They think, explicitly (...)
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  14. Individuating Population Lineages: A New Genealogical Criterion.Beckett Sterner - 2017 - Biology and Philosophy 32 (5):683-703.
    Contemporary biology has inherited two key assumptions from the Modern Synthesis about the nature of population lineages: sexual reproduction is the exemplar for how individuals in population lineages inherit traits from their parents, and random mating is the exemplar for reproductive interaction. While these assumptions have been extremely fruitful for a number of fields, such as population genetics and phylogenetics, they are increasingly unviable for studying the full diversity and evolution of life. I introduce the “mixture” account of population lineages (...)
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  15. Biological Atomism and Cell Theory.Daniel J. Nicholson - 2010 - Studies in History and Philosophy of Science Part C: Studies in History and Philosophy of Biological and Biomedical Sciences 41 (3):202-211.
    Biological atomism postulates that all life is composed of elementary and indivisible vital units. The activity of a living organism is thus conceived as the result of the activities and interactions of its elementary constituents, each of which individually already exhibits all the attributes proper to life. This paper surveys some of the key episodes in the history of biological atomism, and situates cell theory within this tradition. The atomistic foundations of cell theory are subsequently dissected and discussed, (...)
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  16. Code Biology and the Problem of Emergence.Arran Gare - 2021 - Biosystems 208.
    It should now be recognized that codes are central to life and to understanding its more complex forms, including human culture. Recognizing the ‘conventional’ nature of codes provides solid grounds for rejecting efforts to reduce life to biochemistry and justifies according a place to semantics in life. The question I want to consider is whether this is enough. Focussing on Eigen’s paradox of how a complex code could originate, I will argue that along with Barbieri’s efforts to account for the (...)
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  17. How to Count Biological Minds: Symbiosis, the Free Energy Principle, and Reciprocal Multiscale Integration.Matthew Sims - 2020 - Synthese 8:1-1.
    The notion of a physiological individuals has been developed and applied in the phi- losophy of biology to understand symbiosis, an understanding of which is key to theorising about the major transition in evolution from multi-organismality to multi- cellularity. The paper begins by asking what such symbiotic individuals can help to reveal about a possible transition in the evolution of cognition. Such a transition marks the movement from cooperating individual biological cognizers to a function- ally integrated cognizing unit. Somewhere (...)
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  18. Mechanism, Autonomy and Biological Explanation.Leonardo Bich & William Bechtel - 2021 - Biology and Philosophy 36 (6):1-27.
    The new mechanists and the autonomy approach both aim to account for how biological phenomena are explained. One identifies appeals to how components of a mechanism are organized so that their activities produce a phenomenon. The other directs attention towards the whole organism and focuses on how it achieves self-maintenance. This paper discusses challenges each confronts and how each could benefit from collaboration with the other: the new mechanistic framework can gain by taking into account what happens outside individual (...)
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  19. A Metaphysical Approach to Holobiont Individuality: Holobionts as Emergent Individuals.Javier Suárez & Vanessa Triviño - 2019 - Quaderns de Filosofia 6 (1):59-76.
    Holobionts are symbiotic assemblages composed by a host plus its microbiome. The status of holobionts as individuals has recently been a subject of continuous controversy, which has given rise to two main positions: on the one hand, holobiont advocates argue that holobionts are biological individuals; on the other, holobiont detractors argue that they are just mere chimeras or ecological communities, but not individuals. Both parties in the dispute develop their arguments from the framework of the philosophy of biology, in (...)
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  20. The Individuality Thesis (3 Ways).Matthew H. Haber - 2016 - Biology and Philosophy 31 (6):913-930.
    I spell out and update the individuality thesis, that species are individuals, and not classes, sets, or kinds. I offer three complementary presentations of this thesis. First, as a way of resolving an inconsistent triad about natural kinds; second, as a phylogenetic systematics theoretical perspective; and, finally, as a novel recursive account of an evolved character. These approaches do different sorts of work, serving different interests. Presenting them together produces a taxonomy of the debates over the thesis, and isolates (...)
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  21. Everything Flows: Towards a Processual Philosophy of Biology.Daniel J. Nicholson & John Dupré (eds.) - 2018 - Oxford University Press.
    This collection of essays explores the metaphysical thesis that the living world is not made up of substantial particles or things, as has often been assumed, but is rather constituted by processes. The biological domain is organised as an interdependent hierarchy of processes, which are stabilised and actively maintained at different timescales. Even entities that intuitively appear to be paradigms of things, such as organisms, are actually better understood as processes. Unlike previous attempts to articulate processual views of biology, (...)
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  22. Biology and Theology in Malebranche's Theory of Organic Generation.Karen Detlefsen - 2014 - In Ohad Nachtomy & Justin E. H. Smith (eds.), The Life Sciences in Early Modern Philosophy. Oxford University Press. pp. 137-156.
    This paper has two parts: In the first part, I give a general survey of the various reasons 17th and 18th century life scientists and metaphysicians endorsed the theory of pre-existence according to which God created all living beings at the creation of the universe, and no living beings are ever naturally generated anew. These reasons generally fall into three categories. The first category is theological. For example, many had the desire to account for how all humans are stained by (...)
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  23. Evolution of Individuality: A Case Study in the Volvocine Green Algae.Erik R. Hanschen, Dinah R. Davison, Zachariah I. Grochau-Wright & Richard E. Michod - 2017 - Philosophy, Theory, and Practice in Biology 9 (3).
    All disciplines must define their basic units and core processes. In evolutionary biology, the core process is natural selection and the basic unit of selection and adaptation is the individual. To operationalize the theory of natural selection we must count individuals, as they are the bearers of fitness. While canonical individuals have often been taken to be multicellular organisms, the hierarchy of life shows that new kinds of individuals have evolved. A variety of criteria have been used to define (...) individuality. Some criteria rely on the presence/absence of a particular property while others advocate an approach that reflects the process of natural selection. The plethora of approaches to classifying individuality has resulted in confusion regarding how to study individuality in a given taxon. (shrink)
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  24. The stability of traits conception of the hologenome: An evolutionary account of holobiont individuality.Javier Suárez - 2020 - History and Philosophy of the Life Sciences 42 (1):1-27.
    Bourrat and Griffiths :33, 2018) have recently argued that most of the evidence presented by holobiont defenders to support the thesis that holobionts are evolutionary individuals is not to the point and is not even adequate to discriminate multispecies evolutionary individuals from other multispecies assemblages that would not be considered evolutionary individuals by most holobiont defenders. They further argue that an adequate criterion to distinguish the two categories is fitness alignment, presenting the notion of fitness boundedness as a criterion that (...)
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  25. Plant Individuality: A Solution to the Demographer’s Dilemma.Ellen Clarke - 2012 - Biology and Philosophy 27 (3):321-361.
    The problem of plant individuality is something which has vexed botanists throughout the ages, with fashion swinging back and forth from treating plants as communities of individuals (Darwin 1800 ; Braun and Stone 1853 ; Münch 1938 ) to treating them as organisms in their own right, and although the latter view has dominated mainstream thought most recently (Harper 1977 ; Cook 1985 ; Ariew and Lewontin 2004 ), a lively debate conducted mostly in Scandinavian journals proves that the (...)
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  26. What Are Biological Sexes?Paul E. Griffiths - manuscript
    Biological sexes (male, female, hermaphrodite) are defined by different gametic strategies for reproduction. Sexes are regions of phenotypic space which implement those gametic reproductive strategies. Individual organisms pass in and out of these regions – sexes - one or more times during their lives. Importantly, sexes are life-history stages rather than applying to organisms over their entire lifespan. This fact has been obscured by concentrating on humans, and ignoring species which regularly change sex, as well as those with non-genetic (...)
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  27.  61
    More Plant Biology in Philosophy Education.Özlem Yilmaz - 2021 - Dublin, Ireland: Graphikon Teo.
    This is an article in Thomas J.J. McCloughlin (Ed.) The Nature of Science in Biology: A Resource for Educators. Graphikon Teo, Dublin. -/- Abstract: Philosophers usually tend to think of animals when they think about life, plants often only appear in their works as on the margins, in the background; they are rarely in the centre. However, plant life involves unique processes, including remarkable modes of interaction between plants and their environments. Needless to say, plants are vital parts of ecosystems. (...)
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  28. Essentialism in Biology.John S. Wilkins - manuscript
    Essentialism in philosophy is the position that things, especially kinds of things, have essences, or sets of properties, that all members of the kind must have, and the combination of which only members of the kind do, in fact, have. It is usually thought to derive from classical Greek philosophy and in particular from Aristotle’s notion of “what it is to be” something. In biology, it has been claimed that pre-evolutionary views of living kinds, or as they are sometimes called, (...)
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  29.  27
    Synthetic Fictions: Turning Imagined Biological Systems Into Concrete Ones.Tarja Knuuttila & Rami Koskinen - 2020 - Synthese 198 (9):8233-8250.
    The recent discussion of fictional models has focused on imagination, implicitly considering fictions as something nonconcrete. We present two cases from synthetic biology that can be viewed as concrete fictions. Both minimal cells and alternative genetic systems are modal in nature: they, as well as their abstract cousins, can be used to study unactualized possibilia. We approach these synthetic constructs through Vaihinger’s notion of a semi-fiction and Goodman’s notion of semifactuality. Our study highlights the relative existence of such concrete fictions. (...)
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  30. Holistic Biology: Back on Stage? Comments on Post-Genomics in Historical Perspective.Alfred Gierer - 2002 - Philosophia Naturalis 39 (1):25-44.
    A strong motivation for the human genome project was to relate biological features to the structure and function of small sets of genes, and ideally to individual genes. However, it is now increasingly realized that many problems require a "systems" approach emphasizing the interplay of large numbers of genes, and the involvement of complex networks of gene regulation. This implies a new emphasis on integrative, systems theoretical approaches. It may be called 'holistic' if the term is used without irrational (...)
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  31.  74
    Historical Individuals Like Anas Platyrhynchos and 'Classical Gas'.P. D. Magnus - 2013 - In Christy Mag Uidhir (ed.), Art and Abstract Objects. Oxford University Press. pp. 108.
    In this paper, I explore and defend the idea that musical works are historical individuals. Guy Rohrbaugh (2003) proposes this for works of art in general. Julian Dodd (2007) objects that the whole idea is outré metaphysics, that it is too far beyond the pale to be taken seriously. Their disagreement could be seen as a skirmish in the broader war between revisionists and reactionaries, a conflict about which of metaphysics and art should trump the other when there is a (...)
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  32. Essay in Formal Biology.Nikolay Milkov - 2020 - In Newton da Costa & Shyam Wuppuluri (eds.), Wittgensteinian (adj.): Looking at the World from the Viewpoint of Wittgenstein's Philosophy. Berlin: Springer. pp. 473-86.
    The task of this essay is to put biological individuals in formal terms. This approach is not directly interested in matters of time (for example, in evolution), but rather in the formal shape of biological objects. So it is different from, but not opposed to, natural science. In his later years, Wittgenstein made similar investigations in psychology and mathematics. Unfortunately, he found no time to make extensive remarks on philosophy of biology. This is what we are going to (...)
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  33.  49
    (Un)Easily Possible Synthetic Biology.Tarja Knuuttila & Andrea Loettgers - 2022 - Philosophy of Science:1-14.
    Synthetic biology has a strong modal dimension that is part and parcel of its engineering agenda. In turning hypothetical biological designs into actual synthetic constructs, synthetic biologists reach towards potential biology instead of concentrating on naturally evolved organisms. We analyze synthetic biology’s goal of making biology easier to engineer through the combinatorial theory of possibility, which reduces possibility to combinations of individuals and their attributes in the actual world. While the last decades of synthetic biology explorations have shown biology (...)
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  34. Emergent Individuals and the Resurrection.Jonathan D. Jacobs & Timothy O'Connor - 2010 - European Journal for Philosophy of Religion 2 (2):69 - 88.
    We present an original emergent individuals view of human persons, on which persons are substantial biological unities that exemplify metaphysically emergent mental states. We argue that this view allows for a coherent model of identity-preserving resurrection from the dead consistent with orthodox Christian doctrine, one that improves upon alternatives accounts recently proposed by a number of authors. Our model is a variant of the “falling elevator” model advanced by Dean Zimmerman that, unlike Zimmerman’s, does not require a closest continuer (...)
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  35. The Hologenome Concept of Evolution: A Philosophical and Biological Study.Javier Suárez - 2019 - Dissertation, University of Exeter
    The hologenome concept of evolution is a hypothesis about the evolution of animals and plants. It asserts that the evolution of animals and plants was partially triggered by their interactions with their symbiotic microbiomes. In that vein, the hologenome concept posits that the holobiont (animal host + symbionts of the microbiome) is a unit of selection. -/- The hologenome concept has been severely criticized on the basis that selection on holobionts would only be possible if there were a tight transgenerational (...)
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  36. The biological and the social in the ethics of social consequences.Vasil Gluchman - 2003 - Filozofia 58 (2):119-137.
    The paper examines the relationship between the biological and the social in morals. Its conclusion is that the biological is one among other sources of moarls. The social developed as another, much more dynamic source. An important role is played by free will or the moral freedom, especially on the individual morals level. It is the consequences, and especially social consequences, that in the author's viewpoint to the actual state of social and individual morals.
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  37. Psychological Altruism Vs. Biological Altruism: Narrowing the Gap with the Baldwin Effect.Mahesh Ananth - 2005 - Acta Biotheoretica 53 (3):217-239.
    This paper defends the position that the supposed gap between biological altruism and psychological altruism is not nearly as wide as some scholars (e.g., Elliott Sober) insist. Crucial to this defense is the use of James Mark Baldwin's concepts of “organic selection”and “social heredity” to assist in revealing that the gap between biological and psychological altruism is more of a small lacuna. Specifically, this paper argues that ontogenetic behavioral adjustments, which are crucial to individual survival and reproduction, are (...)
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  38. The Porosity of Autonomy: Social and Biological Constitution of the Patient in Biomedicine.Jonathan Beever & Nicolae Morar - 2016 - American Journal of Bioethics 16 (2):34-45.
    The nature and role of the patient in biomedicine comprise issues central to bioethical inquiry. Given its developmental history grounded firmly in a backlash against 20th-century cases of egregious human subjects abuse, contemporary medical bioethics has come to rely on a fundamental assumption: the unit of care is the autonomous self-directing patient. In this article we examine first the structure of the feminist social critique of autonomy. Then we show that a parallel argument can be made against relational autonomy as (...)
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  39. What is a Hologenomic Adaptation? Emergent Individuality and Inter-Identity in Multispecies Systems.Javier Suárez & Vanessa Triviño - 2020 - Frontiers in Psychology 187 (11).
    Contemporary biological research has suggested that some host–microbiome multispecies systems (referred to as “holobionts”) can in certain circumstances evolve as unique biological individual, thus being a unit of selection in evolution. If this is so, then it is arguably the case that some biological adaptations have evolved at the level of the multispecies system, what we call hologenomic adaptations. However, no research has yet been devoted to investigating their nature, or how these adaptations can be distinguished from (...)
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  40. The Sum of the Parts: Large-Scale Modeling in Systems Biology.Fridolin Gross & Sara Green - 2017 - Philosophy, Theory, and Practice in Biology 9 (10).
    Systems biologists often distance themselves from reductionist approaches and formulate their aim as understanding living systems “as a whole.” Yet, it is often unclear what kind of reductionism they have in mind, and in what sense their methodologies would offer a superior approach. To address these questions, we distinguish between two types of reductionism which we call “modular reductionism” and “bottom-up reductionism.” Much knowledge in molecular biology has been gained by decomposing living systems into functional modules or through detailed studies (...)
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  41.  53
    Biological and Linguistic Diversity. Transdisciplinary Explorations for a Socioecology of Languages.Albert Bastardas-Boada - 2002 - Diverscité Langues 7.
    As a sort of intellectual provocation and as a lateral thinking strategy for creativity, this chapter seeks to determine what the study of the dynamics of biodiversity can offer linguists. In recent years, the analogical equation "language = biological species" has become more widespread as a metaphorical source for conceptual renovation, and, at the same time, as a justification for the defense of language diversity. Language diversity would be protected in a way similar to the mobilization that has taken (...)
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  42.  61
    Why “Sex as a Biological Variable” Conflicts with Precision Medicine Initiatives.Marina DiMarco, Helen Zhao & Marion Boulicault - 2022 - Cell Reports Medicine 10050 (3):1-3.
    Policies that require male-female sex comparisons in all areas of biomedical research conflict with the goal of improving health outcomes through context-sensitive individualization of medical care. Sex, like race, requires a rigorous, contextual approach in precision medicine. A “sex contextualist” approach to gender-inclusive medicine better aligns with this aim.
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  43. Possibility Spaces and the Notion of Novelty: From Music to Biology.Maël Montévil - 2019 - Synthese 196 (11):4555-4581.
    We provide a new perspective on the relation between the space of description of an object and the appearance of novelties. One of the aims of this perspective is to facilitate the interaction between mathematics and historical sciences. The definition of novelties is paradoxical: if one can define in advance the possibles, then they are not genuinely new. By analyzing the situation in set theory, we show that defining generic (i.e., shared) and specific (i.e., individual) properties of elements of a (...)
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  44. Is Evolution Fundamental When It Comes to Defining Biological Ontology?Ellen Clarke - forthcoming - In Shamik Dasgupta & Brad Westlake (eds.), Current Controversies in Philosophy of Science. Routledge.
    I argue for the usefulness of the evolutionary kind of biological individual.
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  45. Boundaries of the Mind: The Individual in the Fragile Sciences - Cognition.Robert A. Wilson - 2004 - Cambridge University Press.
    Where does the mind begin and end? Most philosophers and cognitive scientists take the view that the mind is bounded by the skull or skin of the individual. Robert Wilson, in this provocative and challenging 2004 book, provides the foundations for the view that the mind extends beyond the boundary of the individual. The approach adopted offers a unique blend of traditional philosophical analysis, cognitive science, and the history of psychology and the human sciences. The companion volume, Genes and the (...)
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  46.  97
    Functional Integration and Individuality in Prokaryotic Collective Organisations.Guglielmo Militello, Leonardo Bich & Alvaro Moreno - 2020 - Acta Biotheoretica (3):391-415.
    Both physiological and evolutionary criteria of biological individuality are underpinned by the idea that an individual is a functionally integrated whole. However, a precise account of functional integration has not been provided so far, and current notions are not developed in the details, especially in the case of composite systems. To address this issue, this paper focuses on the organisational dimension of two representative associations of prokaryotes: biofilms and the endosymbiosis between prokaryotes. Some critical voices have been raised (...)
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  47. The Right to Parent One's Biological Baby.Anca Gheaus - 2012 - Journal of Political Philosophy 20 (4):432-455.
    This paper provides an answer to the question why birth parents have a moral right to keep and raise their biological babies. I start with a critical discussion of the parent-centred model of justifying parents’ rights, recently proposed by Harry Brighouse and Adam Swift. Their account successfully defends a fundamental moral right to parent in general but, because it does not provide an account of how individuals acquire the right to parent a particular baby, it is insufficient for addressing (...)
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  48. Control Mechanisms: Explaining the Integration and Versatility of Biological Organisms.Leonardo Bich & William Bechtel - 2022 - Adaptive Behavior.
    Living organisms act as integrated wholes to maintain themselves. Individual actions can each be explained by characterizing the mechanisms that perform the activity. But these alone do not explain how various activities are coordinated and performed versatilely. We argue that this depends on a specific type of mechanism, a control mechanism. We develop an account of control by examining several extensively studied control mechanisms operative in the bacterium E. coli. On our analysis, what distinguishes a control mechanism from other mechanisms (...)
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  49. Origin of Quantum Mechanical Results and Life: A Clue From Quantum Biology.Biswaranjan Dikshit - 2018 - Neuroquantology 16 (4):26-33.
    Although quantum mechanics can accurately predict the probability distribution of outcomes in an ensemble of identical systems, it cannot predict the result of an individual system. All the local and global hidden variable theories attempting to explain individual behavior have been proved invalid by experiments (violation of Bell’s inequality) and theory. As an alternative, Schrodinger and others have hypothesized existence of free will in every particle which causes randomness in individual results. However, these free will theories have failed to quantitatively (...)
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    Bivalent Selection and Graded Darwinian Individuality.Daniel J. Molter - 2019 - British Journal for the Philosophy of Science (1):axz026.
    Philosophers are approaching a consensus that biological individuality, including evolutionary individuality, comes in degrees. Graded evolutionary individuality presents a puzzle when juxtaposed with another widely embraced view: that evolutionary individuality follows from being a selectable member of a Darwinian population. Population membership is, on the orthodox view, a bivalent condition, so how can members of Darwinian populations vary in their degree of individuality? This article offers a solution to the puzzle, by locating difference in (...)
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