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Not by Design – Retiring Darwin's Watchmaker - California Scholarship Online
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Not by Design: Retiring Darwin's Watchmaker

John Reiss


More than two centuries ago, William Paley introduced his famous metaphor of the universe as a watch made by the Creator. For him, the exquisite structure of the universe necessitated a designer. Today, some 150 years since Darwin's On the Origin of Species was published, the argument of design is seeing a revival. This work tells how Darwin left the door open for this revival—and at the same time argues for a new conceptual framework that avoids the problematic teleology inherent in Darwin's formulation of natural selection. In a wide-ranging discussion of the historical and philosophical dim ... More

Keywords: William Paley, Charles Darwin, conditions for existence, Georges Cuvier, adaptation, evolution, natural selection, genetic drift, genetic load

Bibliographic Information

Print publication date: 2009 Print ISBN-13: 9780520258938
Published to California Scholarship Online: March 2012 DOI:10.1525/california/9780520258938.001.0001


Affiliations are at time of print publication.

John Reiss, author