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FSU HIS 3464 - Preconditions to Darwin

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2/1814Preconditions to Darwin: Me and Chucky D. (Lecture 12)Kind of a big deal. Recommendation: Read The Darwinian RevolutionNote: Bolded words are right from the PowerPoint lecture, regular words are just ideas we talked about/things our professor said that I summed upWhere are we?● Imperial transition and natural history● Legacy of the Enlightenment○ Progress & Reform○ Mastery & Understanding○ Romanticism & Reason■ Romanticism as the Coma of Reason● the state of science and society○ Gentlemen new level created with influx of money flowing into British Empire○ Religion● 19th century “the sun never set on the British Empire” is seen here in its truest expression○ allowed extensive travel British are everywhere○ lot of money, created new level of gentlemen; sought fortunes in natural world natural world becomes source of wealth; creates new respectable source of science● Charles Waterton taxidermist, put parts of animals together to politically protest the British national debt○ able to travel the globe○ people couldn’t really argue with his stuff because he was like “well you weren’t there”○ legacy from Enlightenment: natural history and natural world can provide model on which to base society; progress● Why did Darwin have success with such controversial issues when others did not? we’ll talk about it next TuesdayThe Question● How old is the earth?○ Catastrophism■ world relatively new■ catastrophes account for change, such as the Flood○ Uniformitarianism■ idea that the earth is really old and we shouldn’t be looking to causes to look to geological changes■ apply same logic around us to geological past don’t make up catastrophes■ Darwin was one of these guys○ Charles Lyell (The Principles of Geology, 1830)● Do species change?○ the extinction issue extinction is a blot on idea of God's creation God can make mistakes?; Religion is still very intertwined with education/ teaching/knowledge (Ex: some university had to be inducted or something by the church to graduate or something like that..?)○ Lamarck says species change, extinction happens; French during French Rev. (he can say what he wants); his theory was cleaner/nicer than Darwin: picture shows that Lamarck just says that nature wants evolution so it happens, while Darwin's idea shows the baby giraffe with a short neck dying as its longernecked peers survive ○ Cuvier didn't agree with Lamarck; reconstructed animals from tooth or something; very much against idea of evolution; expert in fossil records; said reason why it looks like animals are changing over time is because we don't have a complete record where it does indicate change, we're wrong○ Robert Chambers tried to appeal to middle class/nonscientific people to show them that species do change; transmutation; saying it so that it could be reflected in society; used evolution as political propaganda; his point wasn't science, it was the message; many scientists rejected his ideas because they were out there/ didn’t make sense… big thing was that he cleared the path so that the scientific counterpart of Darwin was able to be more accepted in society● How reliable is the Bible?2/25/14The Darwinian Reception Lecture 13Recap:● Movie● Was evolution a new idea?○ not really didn’t spring out of nowhere○ part of a long process starts in 18th cent, picks up wi● 19th cent Britain ripe for change technological revolution enables scientists to go out and explore and stuff, make progress● Darwin's big idea: natural selection doesn't grant organisms what they “need” random differences that arise in species; certain differences allow species to prosper; variations cause better competitive advantage; nature as red and tooth and clawPublication● Long time developing:○ Status in British Scientific society■ Darwin was a pretty big deal, really involved in scientific society/community wealthy and intelligent● Vestiges of the Natural History of Creation○ his peers hated this because it was less scientific/more combative● Alfred Russel Wallace:○ The importance of status not rich, but loved science; collected stuff like Darwin did (8 years) everything except journals burned in a ship fire; bad luck chuck■ Malaysia awesome work, gets yellow fever● Conspiracy! Some theorists say that Darwin totally stole his work○ Wallace's published, with the disclaimer that Darwin had precedence (Wallace okay with this)○ pushed Darwin to publish● November 24th, 1859  sold out in one day○ Darwin not a sensationalist, but he was a sensation○ 1859 marks a turning point!Scientific Response● Darwin's Friends: it is because of his status and his friends that his theory is accepted○ Henry Bates moths have changed colors because of the smoke we have around that's what Darwin's theory predicts○ Asa Gray American; says Darwin is right scientifically but we need to rethink some moral things; intelligent design there can still be a purpose to life; we still need design mechanism aside from nature○ Alfred Russel Wallace preeminent, work to refine theory; supports Darwin no matter what○ Thomas Henry Huxley preeminent, work to refine theory; becomes known as Darwin's “bulldog”; didn't necessarily agree 100%○ not blind followers of Darwin, work to help address problems; as a framework, Darwin's theory is still brilliant● The Question of design: is there intelligent design? Critique a lot of scientists had;● The Question of Time:○ William Thomson best guess was around 50 million years this wasn't nearly enough time for Darwin's theory to work with this number.. for his idea to be right, had to figure out either how the earth was older or how his theory could work in less time○ Strategy for acceptance: a lot of older scientists who argued, but he had a conjuring of young friends waiting for old arguers to die; convince certain generation and wait for older generation to die● The Response of Society:● Influenced by scientific response?:● Wilberforce Vs. Huxley (1860):○ the Ultimate Showdown of Ultimate Destiny?■ One of first out and out confrontations where science seems to come out as the victor; both sides are very certain that they win... comes down to who has better press (Huxley did)■ Wilberforce/church certain they had won●


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