Wednesday, December 06, 2006

Evolution in Four Dimensions: Genetic, Epigentic, Behavioral and Symbolic Variation in the History of Life

I'm curious about Eva Jablonka and Marion J. Lamb's Evolution In Four Dimensions... I think I may have to pick it up to read over the holidays. I first heard about it on (I believe) CBC's The Current while driving into work, and it certainly caught my attention.

From a review referenced on this blog (who told three friends, who told three friends...):

The authors dispute Richard Dawkins' claim that the gene is the only biological hereditary unit, discussing other inheritance systems where his distinction between replicator and vehicle does not seem to hold. Research on bacteria seems to show that some mutation is non-random, i.e. is to some extent directed by environmental or developmental factors. Hence evolution by natural selection may itself produce mutation-generation systems that confer selective advantage.

If anyone's read it I'd love to hear your thoughts.

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