Re: [asa] Definition of evolution

From: Don Winterstein <>
Date: Sun Nov 01 2009 - 01:07:50 EST

Evolution is development over time where later stages are related to earlier stages.

Neither "process," "species" nor "millions of years" belong in a general definition. Just time, change and connection. "Connection" can imply "derived from" or "descended from" in a figurative (e.g., not necessarily genetic) sense.

IOW even those who believe in nothing but special creation should accept biological evolution if they are acquainted with the fossil record and accept geologic times.

Common descent and all other interpretations are special cases.

This definition accommodates not only those you mention but also people outside biology such as sociologists, astrophysicists and automobile manufacturers. It still won't do anything to attenuate the disagreements.


  ----- Original Message -----
  From: Bill Powers<>
  Sent: Thursday, October 29, 2009 8:42 PM
  Subject: [asa] Definition of evolution

  Some time ago I requested a definition of evolution, broadly construed.

  What I am looking for is a definition that would encompass all brands of
  evolution, including neo-darwinist, materialist, TE, ID, and perhaps

  Here is one you might try on for size:

  Evolution is a temporal process, taking place over millions of years,
  whereby species arise in such a way that later species are correlated to
  earlier species.

  The definition is intended to describe the evidence with the least amount
  of theoretical baggage.

  What do you think?



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Received on Sun Nov 1 01:08:14 2009

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