Charles Darwin, The Origin of Species: Charles Darwin’s Origin of Species (1859), in which he argues for the evolution of organisms by virtue of natural selection, is a seminal work in the history of science. It is also a work of enduring philosophical interest, specifically about Darwin’s methodology, as he tries to persuade the reader of the plausibility of events and causes long lost in antiquity. Darwin uses analogy–from the successes of animal and plant breeders – and also what the philosophy William Whewell called a “consilience of inductions,” as Darwin argues that his mechanism of selection explains in a range of fields–behaviour, paleontology, biogeography, anatomy, systematics, and embryology–and in turn is confirmed by its successes. Is Darwin successful, and if not, could he have done better and how? [recommended by Michael Ruse, Florida State University]

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