Evolution, Genetics, and Man

By Theodosius Dobzhansky | Go to book overview

7
Individuals, Populations, and Races

Experience shows that every person we meet is different from any met before. Individual differences exist also among animals and plants, and for that matter no two material objects are completely identical. Yet human language forces the infinite variety of experience into categories symbolized by words--man, horse, dog, pine, etc. It is easy to mistake words for actual objects, and to conclude that each word refers to some metaphysical entity or "idea." Plato, the greatest philosopher of antiquity, actually taught that individual men, horses, pine trees, etc., are imperfect and temporary expressions of the eternal and unchangeable ideal Man, Horse, and Pine.

Although few modern philosophers and still fewer scientists take Plato's "ideas" literally, his way of thinking is deeply rooted in many minds. It is common to hear people speak glibly of a "typical Frenchman," or "real American," or "ideal horse." Such expressions are legitimate only so long as the speaker realizes that the "type" or "ideal" is a composite image which he endows with properties commonly met with in actual individuals or considered desirable or pleasing. The trouble is that people are frequently tempted to think of these abstractions as though they were real entities. This "typological" thinking may even be carried to the point when the imaginary Man or the imaginary American is substituted for real men and for living persons who compose a nation as objects of sympathy and affection.

Types and Classifications . The typological approach is convenient in the branches of biology which deal with description and classification of animals and plants. Just as a large library must be systematized and catalogued to be usable, so living organisms have been divided into phyla, classes, orders, families, genera, species, and sub

-134-

Notes for this page

Add a new note
If you are trying to select text to create highlights or citations, remember that you must now click or tap on the first word, and then click or tap on the last word.
One moment ...
Project items

Items saved from this book

This book has been saved
Highlights (0)
Some of your highlights are legacy items.

Highlights saved before July 30, 2012 will not be displayed on their respective source pages.

You can easily re-create the highlights by opening the book page or article, selecting the text, and clicking “Highlight.”

Citations (0)
Some of your citations are legacy items.

Any citation created before July 30, 2012 will labeled as a “Cited page.” New citations will be saved as cited passages, pages or articles.

We also added the ability to view new citations from your projects or the book or article where you created them.

Notes (0)
Bookmarks (0)

You have no saved items from this book

Project items include:
  • Saved book/article
  • Highlights
  • Quotes/citations
  • Notes
  • Bookmarks
Notes
Cite this page

Cited page

Style
Citations are available only to our active members.
Sign up now to cite pages or passages in MLA, APA and Chicago citation styles.

(Einhorn, 1992, p. 25)

(Einhorn 25)

1

1. Lois J. Einhorn, Abraham Lincoln, the Orator: Penetrating the Lincoln Legend (Westport, CT: Greenwood Press, 1992), 25, http://www.questia.com/read/27419298.

Cited page

Bookmark this page
Evolution, Genetics, and Man
Settings

Settings

Typeface
Text size Smaller Larger
Search within

Search within this book

Look up

Look up a word

  • Dictionary
  • Thesaurus
Please submit a word or phrase above.
Print this page

Print this page

Why can't I print more than one page at a time?

Full screen
/ 406

matching results for page

Cited passage

Style
Citations are available only to our active members.
Sign up now to cite pages or passages in MLA, APA and Chicago citation styles.

"Portraying himself as an honest, ordinary person helped Lincoln identify with his audiences." (Einhorn, 1992, p. 25).

"Portraying himself as an honest, ordinary person helped Lincoln identify with his audiences." (Einhorn 25)

"Portraying himself as an honest, ordinary person helped Lincoln identify with his audiences."1

1. Lois J. Einhorn, Abraham Lincoln, the Orator: Penetrating the Lincoln Legend (Westport, CT: Greenwood Press, 1992), 25, http://www.questia.com/read/27419298.

Cited passage

Welcome to the new Questia Reader

The Questia Reader has been updated to provide you with an even better online reading experience.  It is now 100% Responsive, which means you can read our books and articles on any sized device you wish.  All of your favorite tools like notes, highlights, and citations are still here, but the way you select text has been updated to be easier to use, especially on touchscreen devices.  Here's how:

1. Click or tap the first word you want to select.
2. Click or tap the last word you want to select.

OK, got it!

Thanks for trying Questia!

Please continue trying out our research tools, but please note, full functionality is available only to our active members.

Your work will be lost once you leave this Web page.

For full access in an ad-free environment, sign up now for a FREE, 1-day trial.

Already a member? Log in now.