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On the claimed “circularity” of the theory of natural selection

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Author(s): Petter Portin

Journal: Open Journal of Genetics
ISSN 2162-4453

Volume: 02;
Issue: 02;
Start page: 88;
Date: 2012;
Original page

Keywords: Evolution | Fitness | Fundamental Theorem | Tautology

ABSTRACT
First, the numerous claims that the theory of natural selection would be a tautology, just empty circular reasoning, are shown to be erroneous, and that they follow from an essentialistic and deterministic way of thinking, which is not consistent with the dynamic theory of evolution. Secondly, it is proposed that a careful analysis applying Fisher’s Fundamental Theorem of Natural Selection of the seemingly tautologous sentence in question: “those who reproduce most, reproduce most” shows that in actual fact it is a predictive statement. Consequently, the analysis presented reduces the essence of the theory of natural selection to that one single statement.
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